Saturday, July 9, 2016

I Am Tired.

I was sitting stopped for a train today and I got to thinking what an amazing thing it is that Americans built all those tracks that connect us to one another, and that the train tracks in a sense belong to all of us,. What an accomplishment it was to lay those tracks! Then for some reason it hit me that I am very tired. What happened to the days when we did big things in our country and most so many folks pitched in and from which everyone benefited? This made me sad.. I am also worried. I am sad, I am tired and I am worried.  These things keep me from fully appreciating all the great things about our country.

I am tired of all the hatred. I am tired of so much violence. I am tired of the news cycle that serves up a constant stream of bad news. There is always bad news. If we don’t have big horrific events like the ones last week, we are still bombarded with bad news like some local story about a troubling event states away from us, or how some movie star talked trash about some other star. These days we are hooked together by media while we let our train tracks sink into disrepair. I am tired of bigotry currently in vogue so that people who once kept their dark sides to themselves now think it is OK and maybe even patriotic to speak and act with hatred. I know much of this comes from fear, and I am tired of the fear that is all to often whipped up by the media and shamefully by people who hold or seek positions of leadership. I am sick and tired of politicians putting their spin on terrible news before the bodies have even been identified. I am tired of all of it. I am tired of all of this and more. There is always more.

Also I am worried. I am worried about our country and the way people have been misled and encouraged to act out their anger and fear with words and all too often with deeds. I am worried about the safety of my daughter and all the family of GLBT folks . I worry that she will  get yanked out of some public ladies room because she has short hair and does not wear dresses or bows . I worry about people who are black or brown or who wear ethnic clothing that sets them apart  from stereotypes of how we “should” dress and act. Why are we fighting about who get so pee and where? Most of all I worry about this generation of children and young people.  I worry about the  violence. I worry about kids who are bullied and also about the bullies. I worry about kids who live in fear of their parents being deported. I am tired of kids who have to live in neighborhoods where hearing shots outside their homes is a common nightly experience. I am tired of all the guns and how they are used all too often for violent means. How can we expect kids to grow up to be kind and respectful and tolerant when they see the same news that adults see and also encounter violence and hatred in their own schools, families and neighborhoods?

I am sad because I don’t have any answers as to how to ratchet down all this discord. I am tired and worried and sad. Is this the new reality? I don’t want to ever get used to that notion. People need to get themselves under control and then help their neighbors, kinfolk, and even strangers. We all need more love and less hatred. But how? That is a question without an answer. But maybe Merle Haggard was on to something when he wrote this song:

Maybe could try to do that.