Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Big Picture

The bottom line is we are singularly culpable for ultimately what happens to us. Even though we may believe that either God or government will protect us from the woes of this world, if we don’t do something proactively to dictate our path there are other forces that will be more than happy to do so for you.

As an example if you don’t do anything to stop gravity from doing its thing, something will be caught in its force. If you don’t want an object to fall or be moved by the force of gravity you simply need to do something to secure the object against what gravity does automatically.

There are many things in life that happens. For instance if you do not pay your rent chances are you will be kicked out of your dwelling. Neither God nor government will usually keep that from happening.

Mind you I am not getting into religious philosophy or ideology regarding faith verses works, but merely addressing the reality that most of us face in our day-to-day lives. No matter if you are a person of faith or not, you still have to face the circumstances and/or situations that are presented to you. How you deal with them is usually based upon how you were taught or otherwise trained to deal with such matters.

What is the big picture?

As an example let us look at life as a huge fish bowl. Everyone you see and everything you know to exist is in this huge fishbowl. Not matter how hard you try or how desperately you would like to see things otherwise you cannot change what already exist before you. You are, and everything else is, in the fish bowl of life.

We might like or unlike it, agree or disagree with it, or have opinions about what we perceive it to be, but the one thing we cannot change or control is what IS already. This is in essence the big picture. It IS what it IS. You simply have to deal with what IS. On the other hand acknowledging and dealing with the isness of things is the best way to change them.

Just as I have my thoughts, ideology, philosophy, beliefs, behaviors, likes or dislikes, I also realize that others equally have such things that they consider just as important to them as I consider mine. It is with a spirit of willingness to allow others to be themselves just as much as I wish to be who and what I am that makes it all manageable.

A willingness to work with someone, to try to understand their viewpoint, or just lend an ear to listen to what others consider important to them is where a field of opportunity can be accessed. This does not mean that you should agree with others, but that you are willing to respect them as they decide to represent themselves, even if it opposes everything that you stand for.

When ones sees an opportunity to take the high road they should take advantage of what is exposed otherwise it is just another missed opportunity to achieve the greater good.

If you were to notice a weakness in me and weren’t afraid to share what you perceived with me, that might have been a possible opportunity for me to grow should that criticism or perception prove to be substantiated. But if you did not share it with me it would be my possible loss.

Since we are all in this fishbowl of life, ala “the big picture,” learning how to get along with others can be a key in developing opportunities to negotiate or otherwise come to an agreement of sorts, even if it is merely an agreement to respectfully disagree with each other. Taking the high road on matters make the entire fishbowl better.

This spirit of willingness is often overlooked when people with very firm stances refuses to even listen to the other side. Even countries and governments find it hard to open windows of opportunities to find safe ground to agree to disagree with each other. It is usually their way or no way…what does that possibly gain?

When anyone totally disrespects another without due recourse or an attempt to at least try to understand another’s right to be themselves that simply says that one party thinks they have the right to be or do what the other party does not have the same right to do or be.

In reality only the Maker or One that is responsible for the creation of the fish bowl has the right or ability to totally change what is in the fishbowl. The rest of us are mere players just as are the many different fish that swim in this huge ocean of life.

For those of you that wish to disrespect the humanity of others, I only say to you, “Do unto them as you would want them to do unto you.” If you wouldn’t want someone to treat you in a certain way, then do not treat anyone in a manner of which you would not want to be treated yourself.

Once we learn to at least give each other human respect and human decency perhaps we may learn to gain more positive ground in this fishbowl… in this ocean of life. That is how you learn to deal with the big picture. You have to be able to see it before you can deal with it.

Monday, September 5, 2011

The State of the People

When you look across this great red, white and blue nation of ours there isn’t just one thing that you are seeing, but a multitude of things. Looking at the people of America you aren’t seeing just one face, but a multitude of faces of all descriptions. As you judge at the state of people you’re not judging by one set of issues, but by a multitude of issues from people with completely diverse situations and circumstances.

It appears that we’re looking for general cures to the problems that Americans are facing. If the “fixers” are only working on the issues of their constituents then more than likely they won’t be addressing the problems of a diverse nation. Somehow the “fixers” will need to find a way to see the people as they are and not how they categorize us.

You can’t make all the people happy all the time. You can’t solve all the problems plaguing the various sects of people with a single brushstroke. You must pick a set of problems and fix them one at a time until you methodically go through the entire list. By achieving this the people will see results coming down the assembly line.

The major national problem we’re facing is joblessness. Various groups of Americans are suffering, some more than others. For example the least educated statistically have fewer chances of finding jobs than those with better job training skills.

The segments of our population with the least education proportionately include more Black and Brown faces. Looking even further you will find a correlation between the cities and towns with the highest unemployment rates and those without higher education. The potential solutions need to address both the root of the problems and where they are most saturated?

Understanding the lack of education to be part of the problem we need to come up programs that hire the unemployed to teach those who need employment. If high-tech jobs are most available then we need to hire trained technicians to train those uneducated in technology. This would attack the problems with their solutions.

The billions of dollars we spend protecting the world from itself in foreign nations could be spent hiring our citizens to train the uneducated and unskilled in this nation. In this manner we would be putting our unemployed back to work while training to get work.

We also need to invest in rebuilding our infrastructure. Our roadways, bridges, underground pipelines and gas pipes are out of date and corroded. The money we’re spending on wars can be spent on rebuilding and saving this nation.

The war budget alone could hire hundreds of thousands of citizens. Steps such as this need to be done as part of a long-range strategy where we are investing into the future of this nation for many generations to come.

We need to concentrate on moving this country forward. We can no longer be the caretakers of the world as this nation sinks into destruction and doom. In order for us to be of any assistance for anyone we must first be in a position to do so. In other words we must be a strong nation before we are able to help other weak nations.

The state of the people is not good but the state of those entrusted to lead us is just as bad. We need to look at rebuilding the system that is in place. What we’re currently doing no longer works. If we keep doing what we did in order to get here we will only dig deeper into the hole we lie.

Our elected officials need to stop pointing the finger of blame at each other, but instead start look at the root causes of our problems, unless of course their finger-pointing is itself part of the problem. Unless they learn to work together in a bipartisan spirit we will continue to spiral downward in the League of Nations.

Again, the state of the people is not good, but the cures to the issues we face are not insurmountable. We only need those in positions of leadership to look at the real problems and issues and stop pointing fingers at each other.