Random ThoughtsPosted: Updated:
How are you? I hope you're fine. No I mean it. I really do. In the past couple of years, how you are doing and how our world is doing, has taken on greater significance for me.
As many of you know, I've had some health problems the past couple of years. That alone is enough to make you inventory your priorities. But more importantly, my family is in the midst of a "cycle of life." In the past three years, we have been blessed with the arrival of three more grandchildren. All of whom are little girls. My wife and I now have two grandsons and five grand daughters. And, God willing, there will be more coming in the next couple of years.
What kind of world will they be a part of? I think about that more often now,and to be honest, I'm worried. I know life is cyclical. In political terms, the word is "realignment." The Reagan landslide of 1980 was a political "realignment" of America from liberalism to conservatism.
We, I believe, are going through a thought realignment. A period where, in the name of national security, we can unleash hateful rhetoric. Political labels are immaterial. Republicans and Democrats are equally guilty. In some cases, the immigration debate for example, the hate intensifies regardless of political affiliation.
How did it come to this? What happened? Sadly, when did we Americans forget who we are? We used to be the country the world envied. So many suffered so much just to come here in hopes of one day being able to say, I too am an American.
Many say 9-11 changed all that. They say the world changed that day and we have had to change with it in order to survive. Yes the world changed that dreadful day. The world also changed December 7th, 1941....and we changed with it. We defeated the evil that threatened to engulf the world then and, I believe, we will eventually emerge victorious in this current endeavor. But just as in the past, we must acknowledge our mistakes in accomplishing victory.
In World War Two, it was national policy that Japanese Americans should be held in concentration camps in the name of national security. Thank God, we have acknowledged that horrible error and tried to make amends.
I believe we are repeating many of the same mistakes today. To be sure, we are still locking people up without due process, but even more insidious, is the growing evidence,that the lack of due process extends to how we think. It seems we can't help but demonize those with whom we disagree. As a result, we can't engage in the kind of verbal give and take that is required to solve many of the problems we face...and that has profound implications, not just on the United States, but on the rest of the world as well. For we alone are the world's superpower.
We should remember that, because in so doing, we also remember what is good about us as a people and there is much to remember. Our country is based on the sanctity of the individual. It is that fundamental trust and respect of each other that I find missing in much of our culture today.
We need to remember that each of us deserves to be treated with respect. A part of respecting one another is listening to one another. When we listen we learn and we grow in knowledge. Eventually, we will have enough knowledge to adequately deal with the issues confronting us. The end result, God willing, is a better world.
So, I ask you. How are you? I really hope you doing fine. Would you like to talk? I'll listen because I know you have something to say. I hope you listen to me, because I feel I have something to say. Who knows, together, we may be able to solve global warming! At the very least, we may find out just how much we have in common and we might even become friends. It's worth the risk...not just for ourselves, but for Sara, Emily, Melia and Mia and for your children and grand-children. They deserve it.