I spent most of the day today in rather sad, somber thought. It was in rememberance of the struggles *everyone* worldwide have to endure just to be free to live their lives--among them a young Saudi Couple in the news recently, who were said to be married, the bride's father *DID* in fact approve of the union according to the local laws....
And yet....after the father died, the rest of the bride's family got greedy, complained and had the Saudi "police" bar the couple from living together as man and wife. This from a nation that is supposed to *respect* the union of man and woman in the eyes of the Lord Their God....
It's everywhere. The struggle is everywhere and lives in *all* of our hearts. Still. This is why today saddens me. I've struggled all my life, in spite of treatable mental illness, in spite of coming from a poor and ruined family, to make something better of the life I have. And apparently, other people *insist on* not approving of my efforts and getting in my way. It's cost me money and goodwill to the point that I'm stuck living in public housing currently, with few hopes of re-entering the local job market anytime soon, so I can *earn money* to pay my debts.
This especially hit home for me today because...I had nothing else to do *BUT* think, as my apartment building had suffered a power failure, and for some reason the lights stayed out in spite of our having a backup generator. So all I could do really was wait as the heating system slowly died down, and my apartment got colder in response to the single-digit cold outside.
All I could do was wait, reflect...and wonder what might have been, if only I had been born into a "good" family, if only I had been rich in a rich man's world, if only I had *had* other people mentor me and show me how to live properly *earlier* in life than my final year of High School.
Martin Luther King Jr. also once said, I believe: "...a dream too long deferred is a dream denied." And I see the truth of this written everywhere on the face of our tortured earth. White bigot separatists got to raise hell in Jena, Louisiana today. Only 30% of the school-aged girls in Afghanistan are *in school*, how many years after the "fall" of the Taliban? Putin dragged Russia back into *dictatorship* only two generations after Gorbachev had *liberated* his nation, *entirely* at his own expense as a leader of men.
And *jobs*....jobs American citizens *could* use to become self-sufficient, leave the welfare system *entirely*, and liberate themselves from poverty, are fewer and farther between than ever, as Big Oil, Big Banking, and Blackwater monopolize money, repossess homes, and apply the *chokehold* to freedom, respectively.
My point? The Asker is more than a bit naive in assuming that "All of our actions have consequences, and most of our actions are totally within our control. In short, we have the power to make an impact on the world. On this day of civil rights I am taking the opportunity to consider that impact and
the possibilities which the future holds.
You, like me, have been given this wonderful opportunity
to succeed in life and to find your niche in the world.
I am beckoning you to take advantage of that right.
You and you alone are the master of your own destiny.
Make it a destiny you can be proud of, make it yours."
He's being naive because he just doesn't admit that *other people* can resist your own good intentions for yourself. People can help you....but they can also lie to you, steal from you, and cheat you out of opportunities in life. This in main was *WHY* there was a civil rights movement in the first place. When Americans of African heiritage *stood up* for themselves singly, as individuals against organized whites, they got hunted down and lynched. This is *why* the display of *nooses in trees* in Jena was so deeply offensive, as it was a reminder of the bad old days when there *was* a conspiracy to keep a people down that used terror tactics up to *and including cold-blooded murder by hanging*.
Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil rights leaders were *not* so naive. They got organized themselves and stayed together for their own defense and survival. No, it wasn't racism, it was common sense back then....
And some of it is common sense now....it's common sense for workers to form labor unions. It's common sense for the elderly and disabled, for children's rights activists and women's rights advocates, to band *together* to do together what *cannot* be done separately as individuals, *because* the people who do wrong *have already organized* and have their own system working *in their favor* for it.
It is common sense dating back to Benjamin Franklin, who said: "If we do not hang together, we shall most certainly *hang* separately." Meaning from trees, by the neck, at English hands for rebelling....and keep in mind that Franklin was a white man himself.
We are all in this struggle together. And yes, "none of our hands are clean", as Senator Obama himself noted. We have all been bigots at one time or another....the difference is, most folks don't turn hatred into a *way of life* at the expense of others now....we know it's wrong. It's common sense, not "political correctness".
So why do we *NOT* stand up for ourselves, *Together*, anymore? We sure could use the mutual help. Are we scared FOX News will mock us? They have no *lives* people, it's their job to mock what they hate. This mockery protects their organizations *of hate*, some mentioned above, from *us*, by keeping us from believing that we can stand *together* and take rightful action.
And yes, this also keeps us from believing that we *can* ask for help, and rightfully expect it from our peers as fellow citizens. Not that I say we should blindly and forever lean on each other....just that *so much* of what we, the people, got done, we did not as lonely, bitter people held down, but as neighbors and communities, raising barns and orphaned families and supporting local businesses.
In the real world, helping each other is a blessing. Volunteers know this. In the real world, cooperation, not competition, is how most ordinary people *get it done*, and is NOT cheating. Teachers know this deep down inside, even if their jobs demand railing against it with their students.
My point? Martin Luther King Jr. had *people* behind him, who had his back. *That* is why today bears his name. Civil rights start with one, but have to be *won by many*. History tells us this over and over again....?
When will we listen? When will we *genuinely* help one another out of goodwill and common sense, versus doing it in the meanest, most back-stabbing and petty manner possible?
When will we let each other, and when the need arises, help each other, live our lives?
It could start today, this newborn year. ^_^ Just saying...
Thanks for your time. ^_^