Weight of the world
Sometimes I can feel the weight of the world. It is so very, very heavy. I know I am not the only person to feel this weight, nor will I be the last. Along with the weight come the terrors of hopelessness and dread of what is approaching us all at an ever increasing rate of speed.
We all want to raise our children in a healthy, safe, and nurturing way. We want to give them at least a fighting chance to survive, yet we tolerate policies that are exactly the opposite of what we wish to do with society.
Our young men and women of this society, and others like it, have been sent into battle, often under illusions of national glory and a false sense of patriotism. Many of these young men and women do not return home; others return with wounds that leave them and their families ruined and scarred for life. Generations are needed to repair the family structures they so desperately need.
Almost from birth, our young are inundated with violence. In the US, our media is greatly responsible for this. When looked at with open eyes, it is obvious the greatest social cause of violence – poverty and racism forced upon our children in this day and age. I fear to think about what our youth will face 10 or 15 years down the road.
The USA Patriot Act was rushed through Congress with little critical thought about the extent to which it dangerously added to government’s intrusive powers. With it, our government has run amuck to the point that no other nation on Earth will believe anything we say or will ever want to say. I don’t know how to repair that and I see violent protest on the horizon that none can escape, for it will encircle the globe.
To use the words of George Orwell, “Political control has become personal freedom; government intrusiveness becomes security in one’s person and property; violations of the writ of habeas corpus is now protection of civil liberty; and trampling on constitutional restraints is preserving the American way of life.” On this Earth there is no gender equality, no racial equality, no equality of education, and no social search for global justice and peace. The Earth is a global sweatshop for violence and child labor is its fuel.
Now killer robots enforce the ways of the world. The poor sometimes pay 5 to 10 times more for water than do the rich and powerful. Food production in some regions has fallen behind population growth and you know what that will mean. Food production is growing at only half the rate of the population, leaving an estimated one-third of the world undernourished. It is only a matter time before it spills upon your lap.
There cannot literally, actually, be a place called Hell, any more than you can be a place called Love or Disgrace or Despair. In my eyes, Hell means not perpetual punishment, but absolute extinction. Mankind has been unable to destroy the Earth. Mankind has the knowledge now to destroy it with less skill than it takes for one person to commit suicide, so why are we still here?
The decisions we make or don’t take will widen or narrow our options for a century to come. They could decide the fate of the Earth as a home for humanity. Without family support, parent education, and specific violence prevention programs, we will soon be doomed. The last time I looked, our decisions were being made for us without our input. I’m not happy with that. Are you?
There are those among us who give me reason for hope, for they lift some of the weight from my shoulders. There is Rich Marovich, a Stream Keeper of nature and peace. He is capable of replacing concrete with nature and doing it right through sheer mental fortitude. Libby Earthman, a woman of the Earth, who can entice others to help her restore all of nature to a point where she can be assured of its health. Jan Burton, a mother. She has shown me the strength behind good parenting and her never-give-up-on-love attitude. She has brought me home to where I should be.
Then there is my wife Therese. I don’t know what to say about her, for words will not do her justice. She is the embodiment of love as I know it. Joe Tomlinson, my good friend struggling with cancer has taught me how a man should carry himself in times of difficulty and he showed me that I must be honest and up front with myself before I can be honest and up front with others. John Pickerel, a local businessman with a global heart and a “Citizen of the Year” attitude is teaching me about social duties and how to carry them out like a man.
Together with others that I don’t have words left to mention, they are teaching me to fight my wars for all the right reasons. I’m beginning to feel like Alvin York of Tennessee, another man of a different age who knew the weight of the world. Together they have shown me ways to win the small battles while chipping away at the large. My friend Debra has so graciously given me the tools to voice my opinion on everything. She is the difference between having a mentor and not having one.
Well, things feel lighter already!