Acts Of Love

A month ago, Jeb Bush sympathized out loud with illegal aliens. He said April 6: “Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony. It’s an act of love. It’s an act of commitment to your family.”

Love is just as often creepy and horrific as it is beautiful and warming. I don’t regard illegal immigration as an act of love, and I don’t automatically regard any act of love as a good thing. Same-sex marriage could also be described as an act of love and according to the Torah, same-sex sex for men is an abomination.

Jeb’s sentiments reminds me of another speech about acts of love. This one was written out by John Hinckley in 1982 just before his sentencing:

”From the start, all I wanted was for someone to love me. I desperately wanted to be loved but I never could give appropriate love in return. I seem to have a need to hurt those people that I love the most. This is true in relation to my family and to Jodie Foster. I love them so much but I have this compulsion to destroy them.

”On March 30, 1981 I was asking to be loved. I was asking my family to take me back and I was asking Jodie Foster to hold me in her heart. My assassination attempt was an act of love. I’m sorry love has to be so painful.”

I’ve watched documentaries about losers Lee Harvey Oswald, Mark David Chapman, John Hinckley and I feel like I understand what was driving them. They were failing at life. They were failing in their relationships. So they retreated to their fantasy world and desperately wanted to be important. I get that. Luckily for me, I was raised with a strong sense of right and wrong and so I would never do anything like what they did, but I get their frustration, their failure and their yearning to matter. When you consistently blow it at real life, you’re going to face strong temptations to retreat to dreams and to addictions and to discount other people’s reality. When you’re closely bonded with others, you’re much less likely to do this. Losers, on the other hand, often become True Believers.

I dealt with my feeling of failure by embracing a hero, Dennis Prager, chasing women, converting to Orthodox Judaism, writing my heart out, enrolling in a decade’s worth of psycho-therapy and 12-step programs, and pursuing the Alexander Technique.

Amalek: “You are too old to win sympathy based on your emotional needs.”

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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