There are people who inspire me each day, and they are often so different from each other. I love those differences. But there is a type of person who is so rare that I have to give credit where credit is due. There are some people who see the beauty in every person they meet. Often, it's physical beauty where most people see only plain. Sometimes, it's beauty that is hard for others to see in a given action or expression of emotion.
I've heard Oprah say there are only two real emotions: love and fear. If that is true, then maybe they're the bases of our concepts of beauty and ugliness. One part of me wants to be one of these people who sees the beauty in everyone. My sister bought my kids a book by Jamie Lee Curtis called "Beautiful Oops" that demonstrates that mistakes can be turned into works of art. I really appreciate the sentiment. But another part of me wants to be "realistic." I feel an obligation to see and acknowledge ugliness in the world, as much as I would love to only see beauty.
But not the physical ugliness. To an extent, I have hope for the redemption of people who have done evil things. Look up my politics and you will see that I call myself a pragmatic idealist. If I am going to see ugliness, especially the ugliness I fear that can infect and spread, I only want to see the ugliness underneath. This is why I try with every fiber of my being not to insult the physical appearance or "fixed traits" of people I otherwise find ugly to the core. I have no doubt that the rare gems in society who see beauty in everyone will not even notice physical flaws and will somehow see a beautiful oops in the souls of such human beings who have no apparent redeeming characteristics. I am jealous of that level of magnanimity. I am a little skeptical, too.