Remembering the Past 8-4-2019

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This is a noble statue, but not everybody agrees with me. There is a movement in the United States to tear down and destroy monuments honoring the memory of who we once were. Some claim the statues are racist because they honor the heroes of the Civil War, but whomever the man on the horse is, he gave up his home and family to support the beliefs of his Country.

This statue happens to be General Lee, but it could represent Everyman. Whether or not, Everyman wore blue or grey, he was a hero and he should be remembered, and honored, as such.

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Slavery is horrible, and that doesn’t change just because it was a hundred years ago. But, we have to remember, slavery has been around as long as man. Every race and creed has probably been subjected to slavery at one point or another. It was not right, but it was who we were. It is also not right for us to try to destroy and hide the actions of the past, no matter if we agree with them or not.

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The issue, though, isn’t really past slavery as much as some people would have us believe. Every man, woman and child has the right to defend their beliefs. Some people still carry the Slavery Badge, but I can’t help but think it is no longer about slavery but entitlement. Slavery was wrong, but dwelling on the past is a sure path to destruction.

Blacks were considered less than human. So were the Jews in the Holocaust. The mentally ill. Should we tear down all the memorials to the Holocaust? Should we forget what happened?

What about the America Indians? The memorials to Rome? After all, Rome embraced slavery.

If we tear down the memorials and reminders of the past, we will also forget the horrors of the past. And, if we forget, I guarantee you we are bound to make the same mistakes in the future.

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There is still slavery in this world for men, women and children. Why is this less horrendous to the modern us than the men and women of yesterday? They fought. Are we? Are we standing in line to save the women and children being trafficked as sex slaves? The men smuggled into our country to spend the reminder of their lives working to pay off the smugglers.

The Civil War is part of who we are and who we will be tomorrow and in a hundred years. Trying to wipe it under the rug doesn’t change the facts.

If we hide the past, we will forget the past. If we forget the past, we will relive the past. If we relive the past, how many more will die?


“A Virginia judge has ruled that statues of Confederate generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson in Charlottesville are war monuments that the city cannot remove without permission from the state.

In a nine-page ruling obtained from the University of Virginia School of Law website, Circuit Court Judge Richard E. Moore said neither the intentions of the people who erected the statues nor how they make people feel change the fact that the statues pay homage to the Civil War. Moore cited state code in his ruling that says it is illegal for municipalities to rove such monuments to war.”

(Written Memorial Day 2019)

 

War and Solving the World’s Problems

“Dad, how do soldiers killing each other solve the world’s problems?”
Bill Watterson, Calvin and Hobbes: Sunday Pages 1985-1995

 

I was looking back through my blog today and ran across this quote.  It stopped me in my tracks the first time and it did again today. The world is rife with War. Every day some conflict seems to break out somewhere in the world, ending with more innocent people killed or maimed, their lives and homes destroyed.

Are we thinking about War wrong? Might makes right. The winner writes the history. The strongest survives.

But, as Calvin wisely asked his Dad, how do soldiers killing each other solve the world’s problems?

How indeed? This is one of those questions parents dread. How do you explain war to a child whose innocence you wish to protect? Should we even explain this nasty business to a child or is this one of those times for ‘you’ll understand when you get older?’

Okay, so no, we shouldn’t terrorize children with the concept and reality of war. But if we don’t start teaching them better ways to solve the world’s problems, nothing is going to change.

Man is a violent species. We’re not so different from lions or wolves or alligators. We protect our species from any perceived threat, whether real or not. Every species protests its own, even rabbits. Mice. Maybe amoebas for all I know.

The reality, however, is that we no longer consider ourselves one species. Humans have gone off the scale. Male lions fight for dominion over the pride, but they don’t go killing every other male lion on the plain just because they are male.

Why do we go that extra mile to kill everything which gets in our way, doesn’t think our way, or lives, believes or looks differently. Why have we separated our species into the right and the wrong, the weak or the strong, the human or the non-human.

We’re at war with everything. Ourselves. Our neighbors. The others just across the boundary line. Pollution. Melting Icebergs. Who controls the wealth. Who goes hungry or homeless or without medical care.

How are soldiers killing each other solving these problems?

Truth is, they’re not. We’re not. We’re not solving the problems which matter. We are just creating more division, more dividing lines, more conflict.

War never ends war. Violence only begets more  violence.

Turn that around and peace only begets peace. Living in harmony makes us one again; makes us whole.

Don’t get me wrong. I honor and respect those men and women who willing sacrifice their lives and limbs and days to protect baseball, mom and apple pie, but don’t be fooled. We are no different from the rest of the world. We’ve separated our selves into the American species and might does make right.

How are those soldiers dying and suffering for us solving the world’s problems?

We try, of course we do, but one narrow opening for peace doesn’t defeat war.

War will only be defeated when we, all of us in every town and house and country, rich or poor, homeless or living in a huge mansion, stand together and say ‘Enough.’ When collectively we say nobody should have to fight or die because of our differences.

When we declare we will no longer fight. We will honor our species – every single member of our species – with the basic needs of life. Food. Water. Shelter.

How are soldiers killing each other solving the problems of food, water and shelter?

I am an American and I love my country. I don’t know anything about being Chinese or Russian or French. But you are all my species. These difference don’t make us different. They make us human.

So, next time your neighbor pisses you off, somebody cuts you off in traffic or breaks in front of you in line, ask yourself, “How do soldiers killing each other solve the world’s problems?”

It starts here.

Let’s make history.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Am Brave 30-Day Challenge – Day 1 5-23-2017

I am Inspired.


Today’s Brave Act.

Choose a physical object to serve as a reminder of why you committed to this 30-Day Brave Challenge.

Embed your intention in this object. Strategically place it where it will be seen/used every morning during this short, powerful exercise.


TODAY’S JOURNAL PROMPT

What was the seed that inspired you to start this 30-day challenge?
What does it mean to be inspired? And, by that, I mean what does it mean to me, deep down, to be inspired. I know I haven’t felt inspired for a long time. At least I haven’t felt inspired and remained inspired. Inspiration comes like the ocean waves, washing in one moment and out the next.

I get scared. What am I doing? What am I trying to do? What do I think I can do and why do I think I can do this? I can’t, you know.

I don’t have the inspiration or courage to fully commit.

Sadly, every time I back down, I dishonor myself. I feel that dishonor and yet I can’t force myself to move forward. It is easier, by far, to just let things happen, to drift through life as it comes instead of attempting to mold itinto what I want. Who I want to be. What I want to do. How I want to let my light shine.

As I said, I dishonor and disappoint myself every time I open my writing file and am paralyzed with fear. I can’t do this because nobody will care. Or read it. Or like it.

On the other hand, what does that matter? I am, after all, simply telling the lives of the characters who live inside me. I am telling their stories for me, and so they will quit bugging me to be heard.

Today’s brave idea is Inspired. I know how I’m not inspired. I’m afraid of being inspired. But what would happen if I was inspired. How can I be brave about being inspired.

I am brave because being a writer is all I have ever been. I can never not remember when I wasn’t a writer. And, corny as it might sound, I have always felt a presence leading me forward. Encouraging me to just take one more step and then another and another. Telling me that all my dreams will come true if I just keep trying. Moving forward.

Remembering to be inspired.

For my brave act, I am choosing a candle to remind me of the flame of desire living inside me. It can’t die, this flame, unless I let it go and stop believing in myself. So I light this candle (its pumpkin, by the way) every morning to remember me of my promise to myself.

I can be brave.

I can find my self again.

I can take a leap of faith and trust I will land safely.

I can overcome my fears.

I can plant the seed of bravery inside my heart.

I can know – I do know – I can be brave.

Can you?