It’s all too easy to gloat at the misfortune of others — especially when they’ve been critical of you in the past.
For former Navy SEAL Dan Crenshaw, however, taking the low road was never an option. When the congressman-elect saw that one of his best known critics was having a tough time, he decided not to kick him while he was down. Instead, he picked up the phone.
Recently, “Saturday Night Live” star Pete Davidson posted an alarming status on Instagram which looked to many as a cry for help. “I really don’t want to be on this earth anymore,” the comedian wrote.
Responding to what appeared to be a call for help from comedian Pete Davidson, @DanCrenshawTX with me for #HouNewsmakers EXTRA talks about his response and phone call. https://t.co/BRiFwhBjD8 pic.twitter.com/GpqlUCPXpw
— Khambrel Marshall (@KPRC2Khambrel) December 17, 2018
Davidson made headlines after he mocked Crenshaw’s appearance during the run-up to the midterm election. The former SEAL lost an eye in combat and now wears an eye patch while in public. Crenshaw took the teasing in stride, and appeared on the NBC show to send a message of friendship.
But Davidson has also been making headlines for his personal life. Davidson’s ups and downs are well known, and not long ago he went through a tabloid-fodder breakup with pop superstar Ariana Grande.
When the newly-elected Congressman Crenshaw saw the possibly suicidal post on social media, he dialed Davidson’s number and reached out to talk.
“I told him everyone had a purpose in this world,” Crenshaw told KPRC News. “God put you here for a reason. It’s your job to find that purpose. And you should live that way.”
“We’re not good friends,” the former SEAL admitted about the young “SNL” star. “But I think he appreciated hearing from me.”
The words that the war veteran told the comedian may have been meant specifically for Davidson, but they are important for anyone who might be going through tough times.
“Know you have value,” Crenshaw said. “Especially a guy like that. Sometimes he makes people laugh. Sometimes he makes people mad,
“But he makes people laugh a lot,” the veteran continued. “It was a good conversation.”
Once again, Crenshaw has shown that he has the kind of character that is often lacking in entertainment and politics. Yes, making people laugh or representing citizens in Congress is important, but there are values that go deeper.
Hopefully, Davidson will be able to lift himself out of the dark personal place he is in and get the support he needs. Whether the former SEAL’s phone call made a difference is something only the comedian knows, but the heartfelt gesture speaks volumes.
It’s very easy to allow politics to consume us, to polarize every issue and every personal interaction. At the end of the day, however, even people with very different lives have much in common as Americans and human beings.
Crenshaw seems to understand this, and has made civility part of his platform. We could all aspire to emulate him.
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