The anger is everywhere. Why? I understand that our Protect and Serve departments need an overhaul, but it seems to be going far beyond that. Shouldn’t simply being a decent human being toward another human being be the top priority?
I have been around since 1959 and have seen a ton of protests and riots: the good, the bad, and the ugly of them. One of my most memorable was the Martin Luther King political march of 1965.
I also remember the bra-burnings going on in all different places after the Miss America protest by feminists and civil rights advocates. I, myself, did my own bit when I was a Freshman in high school by streaking. (FYI: Fun but not the next day and someone got photos, and my dad was not happy.) Right this moment, I cannot recall the reason we girls did it. This was in 1973, which was still a time of equal rights for women (it seems like we are still fighting this battle today). Thinking back, streaking was probably not the best way to get our message across.
Just what is the best way to get critical human messages across to the world? In my opinion, it would be passive mass protests. Once they become violent or angry, it gives the whole message a sour meaning. The world initially saw the inhumane treatment of Police officers against a black man. Now, what do they see?
- More police brutality?
- Not enough being done to fix the problem?
- Too much being done to fix the problem?
- Protests turning into riots and looting?
- Loss of police protection (Yes, I have been reading articles on this very subject – sad but true they are quitting and fewer recruits now.)?
- More anger and violence?
What if we pushed a bigger agenda? OK, I may sound a bit like Gandhi here:
*To call woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man’s injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then, indeed, is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then woman is immeasurably man’s superior. Has she not greater intuition, is she not more self-sacrificing, has she not greater powers of endurance, has she not greater courage? Without her, man could not be. If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with woman. Who can make a more effective appeal to the heart than woman?
I am not perfect (not even close). I am female, old, white, and love a perfectly cooked steak. There is no way I will ever come close to the path that Gandhi led, but I do strive to be better than I was yesterday. I have had lots of bad stuff happen to me in my life, more than many others I know, but I still try to remain optimistic. Somedays that is a really tough decision to keep. Maybe it is a bit ridiculous to believe, but I think we need to take a few steps back, starting with our kids.
BRING BACK THE IMAGINATION CLASSES!
This may sound like a stupid-simple idea but hear me out. I grew up with art, music, crafting, and if it was not taught in school, it was found in my 4-H group. I believe that when we are encouraged to use our imagination, we understand the things around us better. I also think that it is the perfect way to express feelings. If sad, I go to create something. It instantly brings me a sense of self-worth and pride in accomplishing something all on my own. If angry, go gardening. When I am most upset, I can rip out weeds at a massive pace. I also like to build things with wood when I am upset. Ramming a drill through a piece of plank or hammering the snot out of a nail is a great release for me. If happy, I SING!! At the top of my lungs, off-key, and as much as I want. I don’t care if anyone hears it, but if they laugh along with me and my lousy singing, all the better.
I like to believe that to be creative and imaginative is to be human. When we encourage more of those ideals, we encourage many more ways to resolve issues peacefully, I hope.
Maybe if we push more on “everything” matters, especially being humane to each other, things will change for the better without all the violence in the process. A simple difference of opinion will NEVER make me give up on my friends. Our differentiation is what brings us together.
You can also check me out at: https://helbergfarmstories.com/ for fun stories from our farm.
Paraproskodian sentence for this post:
“I always take life with a grain of salt, plus a slice of lemon, and a shot of tequila”