One of the objectives of this blog was to dress failure up in a little humour and invite her to tea. A reminder that if at first we don’t succeed, write a blog post about it and try again. A safe place to admit you made mistake and share a few laughs before getting back to the business of making the world a better place.
In the last few weeks, it has been getting harder and harder to laugh when all I want to do is cry. The digital world has launched an assault of negative news and cutting comments. An inescapable barrage of venomous words painting an ugly portrait that hangs over our heads. Social media has become a contradiction of bringing people from across the continent together while simultaneously driving neighbours on different sides of the political spectrum apart.
As I get older I can appreciate the importance of balance. When I was young and people described my idealism as naivety I was frustrated. When my passion was thwarted as drama, I was embarrassed. When my kindness was mocked as weakness I was outraged and like any typical rebellious teenager I showed them all by revelling in it. Beware of the kind passionate idealist! She will become a Social Justice Warrior, a NDP supporter and the bane of her Conservative family’s existence.
I also became a person who didn’t know how to say no. A person who at one point during the heyday of her rescue experience, had 2 dogs, 4 puppies, 3 cats, 5 kittens, 3 children and 1 husband and zero time to care for any of them. I can tell you that even the best intentions can go sideways and there are times I need someone to center me (even if I do fight them kicking and screaming). Sometimes, you can’t be allowed to run back into the burning building. Sometimes the hero, is the person holding you back.
I get that we can’t save everybody. Moderation is the key to success. I can appreciate that there is a time for tough love but it’s important that we don’t allow that to be confused with hate.
Here in Canada if you find yourself discouraged during a debate on carbon tax remind yourself that both sides are looking out for what they feel is best for our country. Some people might be more educated on certain points and it is up to them, to calmly and respectfully, inform those that are not. Those that are not, feel free to use ignorant language and name calling so that those that are have an easier time picking you out of the crowd. Be open to new ideas but at the end of the day remember that we might just agree to disagree and leave it in the hands of the person we chose to be our leader. A person elected because their ideals and values coincided with the majority of the population. If you are part of the population that does not feel that your leader represents your voice, then by all means, write letters, organize marches, or find other ways to get your opinion out there in order to convince those with the power to make change, that you have something to add to the conversation.
If you are in the States, you’ve got yourself a bigger problem. I can see how you got there. As I said, there are times when I pull left and I need my husband to pull right. Times when I might be too soft in my parenting style and I need someone to step in and say, “No! Owning chickens is not a way to teach our children the importance of reducing our carbon footprint, it’s just a way for you to sneak more pets into the house”.
Sometimes though, even Mr. Cractpot needs to realize trying to be right, can leave you in the wrong. When we were new parents to a toddler who was perfecting her starfish impression by having full out tantrums on the floor when we asked her to pick up her toys, we had different views on how to deal with it. Mine involved lots of literature, and hugs and exploring ways to make cleaning up fun. My husband’s involved me coming home from work late one night to a three year old camped out in the living room. She explained that Daddy said that if she didn’t clean her room, she didn’t deserve one, so he took it away. I can tell you that neither of these approaches worked but at least mine didn’t involve a toddler living out of a cardboard box in our family room.
Another time I left the children to work on Belated Birthday messages for a friend. When I returned home, my middle child had used mixed media to create a glittery, eye catching card that had a big plate of spaghetti and meatballs on the front. She wrote, “I know it’s pasta your birthday, but I still love you.” My youngest had used a scrap piece of paper and a pencil to sketch a stick man knocking on the door of a frowning person with a bubble over his head that read, “Crap. I forgot your birthday”
I couldn’t help but laugh which of course made my son very defensive. He explained that his work had suffered because Mr. Cractpot had said he wasn’t allowed to use pens. I tried to give my darling husband the benefit of the doubt. Maybe the pens were being used on the rug? Maybe they hadn’t been put away properly and this was the consequence? Mr Cractpot clarified that he hadn’t taken away pens, he’d banned puns. PUNS! Now I think we can all agree that this is taking things a little too far.
No matter how frustrated you get, you cannot take away a person’s basic rights or their freedom of speech. A person who does this needs someone to remind them that these things are non negotiable.
Women standing up to march against Trump are not delicate liberal snowflakes having an emotional reaction; they represent the half of the population that recognize that their leader has no respect for half of the population. This is not rhetoric, or fake news or alternate facts. In his own words, the president of the United States made his opinion on females and their corresponding body parts very clear. Unfortunately for whatever reason, he was still elected to be one of the most powerful men in the world. He spent his first day at this very important job debating crowd sizes. That is how he felt his time was best spent. Which I suppose is a blessing because the next day was spent reinstating a bill that prohibits the US from funding any international agency that is pro choice.
Even if you are pro life, you can’t really believe that a man who cheated on his first wife and got his mistress pregnant before allegedly suggesting abortion really possesses the moral high ground that you’re looking for? Regardless of where you stand on the issues it’s time to face the fact that you’ve elected a bully that is using political policy to punish an entire gender for daring to voice their concerns. It’s ok, I’ll still invite you to tea and maybe you can clear up a few things that I might be missing. I want to believe that America can be great, but attacking the press and denying women the right to choose, is not a strong start. It’s not a sign of weakness to admit you made a mistake. We’ve had a few laughs but now it’s time to stand together and get back to making the world a better place. Feel free to leave your opinion in the comments. Just remember, no FOWL language 😉
Majority rule only works if you’re also considering individual rights. Because you can’t have five wolves and one sheep voting on what to have for supper. ~Attributed to Larry Flynt