Sunday, December 16, 2012

A Grumpy Bulldog Holiday Message

After the massacre in Newtown (the latest massacre this year), there are a lot of things I want to say.  Many of those things are negative, especially concerning gun nuts and religious nuts.  But I'm going to keep thing slightly more positive, though to gun nuts and religious types it might not seem that way so much.

The gist of what I want to say is this:  stop looking for deus ex machina solutions to problems.  There is no Superman or Batman or yes not even a Scarlet Knight who can single-handedly save us from evil.  There are no wizards like Harry Potter or Gandalf who can wave a magic wand to make things better.  No deity is descending from Heaven or Mount Olympus or Asgard to save us. 

It's time to put the onus on us to solve our own problems.  I don't believe in God or Allah or Odin or Zeus, but I continue to believe that when we work together we can overcome any problem.  If we truly want Peace on Earth this holiday season and every season to come, we have to work together instead of against each other.  Every problem from gun violence to the fiscal cliff is because of us and it's up to us to fix it.

Over two thousand years ago when the first Christmas happened, the world was a much different place.  Much of the world's population were slaves.  Pedophilia and other barbarous acts were rampant.  Women couldn't own property and were sold into marriage for livestock.  In many places these are still problems, but overall they aren't as prevalent as they were when Jesus was born in the manger. 

How did things change?  It wasn't because a guy died on a cross.  It wasn't because people sat around praying to their gods.  It happened because ordinary people banded together and made change happen.  Look at the Magna Carta, the American Revolution, the civil rights movement and so forth.  None of that happened by a miracle from above.  It happened because people just like you and me were willing to give their lives if necessary to make happen.

I'm not saying we need to die to solve gun violence or the fiscal cliff or anything else.  But if we really want things to change then we need to DO something.  Write the president and Congress by email/snail mail to tell them you're fed up with the status quo.  Donate and volunteer with worthy charities.  Edmund Burke was noted for saying, "All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing."  Or as Batman said, "Anyone can be a hero."  So get out there and DO something if you're tired of the state of this world.

Happy Holidays...

9 comments:

  1. Good point. If we all sit around waiting for the other guy to to something, nothing will ever get done. TACAMO! (TAke Charge And Move Out!)

    S

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  2. Yeah, there's a lot that could be said here, but I'll just bring it down to people waiting in line for hours and hours for a new igadget but being unwilling to help someone buy food.
    We've just got the wrong priorities.

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    1. Agreed. Some people want us to believe that the government and/or shadowy organizations support these misplaced priorities, but we set those things ourselves. Every time we choose to believe one thing is extremely important that is in fact extremely trivial, we let civilization down. Sometimes it seems like even the entities that we allow to be the watchdogs of culture are the very things promoting our culture to wallow in its worst impulses.

      As strange as it seems, the success of someone like Seth MacFarlane is something to cheer. "Family Guy" is about ridiculing false pretenses, and the more mainstream it gets, and the greater success and awarness that MacFarlane gets, perhaps the closer we get to admitting that there are a lot of things we need to take a second look at. Maybe I like MacFarlane because he's an obvious Star Wars geek, but the stuff he does, along with "The Simpsons," "South Park," "Dilbert," this is the kind of commentary we need.

      With all apologies to Mr. Dilloway, it's not supporting existing institutions that creates massive change, but rather breaking from them. I am not advocating revolution. I'm simply asserting that we're already chipping away at the notion of sacred cows. In the Arab world today, people can and will riot because of their sacred cows. We don't do that, and that's great, but we've got to get past the point of simply saying "nothing's sacred" and realizing WHY.

      (Yes, I'm droning on.)

      If you don't like the status quo, figure out what the new status quo needs to be, and then start working on THAT.

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  3. You said it well. People make things happen. Perhaps it's time for a few changes to the laws of the land. Certain rights deemed suitable in the Colonial days, should definitely be revisited.

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  4. Although those who wish to commit atrocities will always find a way to access weaponry. What concerns us in other parts of the world is why it seems so damned easy to purchase a gun in America.

    In peace and hope, a concerned dog, Penny

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  5. Strong and powerful words. It is up to us to find solutions to these problems. The first thing we need to do is elect leaders who understand that politics is the art of the possible. Anyone entrenched in a personal ideology must go. We need people who can work together or things just won't get better.

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  6. I absolutely agree. I wrote letters to my senators and representatives this morning and planned to post about the same thing tomorrow. Enough already.

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    1. Correction - representative. Apparently our state has several, but I only have the right to email one.

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