Sunday, December 16, 2012

Don't know what to think

There are no words for the tragedy. It's unimaginable. Every adjective in the English language over the past few days has been used to describe this horror, so I will not add to the list.

I do not presume to have the answers like many on TV or Facebook have. Every social matter in this country is so intertwined with a million other issues we will never gain a consensus on what is good and decent. Everything is polarized. If you need to raise taxes to help others, one group goes nuts and if you take away funding for anything, another group goes nuts.

Since no one can be apeaised we go into blame mode. In this case the blame has run the obvious gamut: guns, parents, schools, society, mental illness, media, etc. What becomes noticeable is if you listen to the pundits, message boards or other social media is that there are always a few "blame-ables" that seem to repeat themselves. If I were a classroom teacher I might even draw a venn diagram to see what shared opinions are voiced after each tragedy.

If the answers are so obvious why are they not addressed? I'm not talking about knee jerk reactions that are short term solutions i.e. maximum security schools or for everyone to live in fear of their neighbors. What is the reasoning to not addressing societies ill's?

Many leaders will tout Christian values but enact policies that hurt many people and benefit a select few. I can't understand why we have to have winners and losers. And before anyone calls me a socialist, I am not against someone with initiative making a lot of money, but rather in favor of policies that don't create an unequal playing field.  If we looked after everyone and not a lucky few I wonder what our society would look like.

This clip is what I believe our society could be. Many winners few losers.

This is one area where teachers thrive. This is why I believe the teachers who perished are heroes. During their careers, they juggled all the factors that would bring each student down and managed to address them so that they might become a viable member of the classroom community. They understood, just like every other teacher in the world, that when everyone in the class succeeds individually, the classroom community thrives as well. Just like when a factory employs the entire town, everyone wins. Low unemployment, dedicated workers for the factory, many winners.

 There is little doubt that once the mourning period is over, everyone will go back to life as usual and nothing will be addressed to prevent the next tragedy and it will be second verse, same as the first.

Two questions that frequently cross my mind when it comes to our society.

1. Why does it take the death of a teacher, EMT, police officer or firefighter for people to take a step back and realize how valuable they really are to advancing our society?

 2. Why do we feel the exact opposite about many of our country's political and corporate leaders yet, as a population we give them so much influence?

As a member of this American society who feels as though I have very little say, I guess I am looking to be inspired by our society. I am not sitting around waiting for something to happen. Being a parent, teacher and coach I play a role in our community but I don't feel our leaders care to know what affects our communities (good or bad).

I think this song really sums up my thoughts, questions, and hopes for the future.

RIP to the heroes. Those who sacrifice themselves for the benefit of others
RIP to the children who undoubtedly were able to light up their parents hearts just by smiling.

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