I wish that we would stop referring to anyone as "just a ... "
I remember many years ago I heard someone say "It's just a dog" and it utterly shocked me. I couldn't understand how anyone could think that, let alone voice such a thought. Since then sadly I have heard it many times in reference to different types of animals and plants too. Sometimes people grieving for their beloved companion animals come across insensitive remarks like this and it makes them feel like their mourning is somehow less valid.
No living being deserves to ever be referred to as "just a thing." It diminishes their worth and can be used as justification to deny equal status to that being.
This photo I took today of a dandelion in my garden represents my wish that we will move past saying and thinking "just a ..."
Dandelions are often referred to as "just a weed" and many try to eradicate them with harmful pesticides. I dislike the pesticide commercials where you see a cartoon gardener spray the dandelion as if he is shooting a gun (with the music of an old western type movie playing.) He is depicted as a hero for defeating a small flower. Meanwhile dandelion greens are a nutritious food source for us. (I just saw them at the store next to the arugula.) Dandelion roots also have many health benefits. We could harvest them instead and enjoy the flowers, which start off as pretty early signs of Spring and later become the beloved puff balls that are powerful symbols of making wishes and wishes come true.