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May 27, 2022 – The Sixty-Seventh Official Friday Night BeerBlog
My friend Bob Brown and I were out delivering food on Wednesday and I was talking to him about this week’s blog and what I was planning to write due to what had happened the day before. His response was “which thing?”. It took me aback. Of course I was referring to the shooting rampage and murder of 21 people at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. But he was right. There are so many bad things that happen on a daily basis across this country and around the world, that unless you are specific, there isn’t a reference.
There are so many bad things happening daily that it can become overwhelming and leave us to wonder what we, little ole us, can do to make a difference. Surely one person can’t make a difference. You may feel that you have no power, but what you have to realize is that you have ALL the power and just give it up too easily. I say what you can do in days like this, is to begin the work to take that power back.
How many of you saw the statement made by Coach Steve Kerr of the NBA Warriors? After the shoot around of his team in the NBA playoffs, he used his platform of the post-practice press conference to let everyone know exactly how he felt about what had happened in Texas, why he felt it had happened, and what he feels needs to happen to make it NOT happen again.
It was an empowered speech about the atrocities of the killing of actual babies, whose parents dropped them off at school that morning with the belief that they were safe, taken care of, and would be coming home that afternoon. In the moment, he knew that talking about basketball didn’t matter. That it was more important to use that opportunity, of that press conference, to discuss the fact that over 85% of Americans believe there needs to be a universal background check for the purchase of arms and that 50 members of Congress are holding that vote hostage in order to retain the power they have.
Does this type of statement leave you confused? Are you aware of what is happening in the larger world around you? You somehow feel that it doesn’t affect you personally, so you are disinterested? Well, these things, this issue and many, many others don’t affect us until they do. And then we can become overwhelmed at how we’ve let certain people lead us, even though they may not be representing how we, as a people, feel and believe.
I know there’s enough to keep up to date on, but at some kind of minimum, we need to educate ourselves on issues of importance in our lives. Because when something DOES happen – and it more than likely will, we can help others understand what has happened and what they can do and how they can use their own voices to affect change.
I know you’ve heard this one a million times. And it seems so elementary. You may even feel that your one little vote doesn’t matter. But you would be wrong. How do you think the people in power got to that place? They had enough people vote for them to put them there. How do they get voted out? You work to get yourself and other people to the polls to vote for another candidate. Simple.
It’s called “Get Out The Vote”. And it’s why and how this country became the country it is. Our foremothers and fathers fought the revolutionary war for the right to NOT be told what to do or how to live. And we find ourselves in 2022 allowing a group of elected officials to go against what we want as a majority. We are allowing them to dictate to us what they think is best for us as a people. How are they doing?
It is not up to everyone else. Yes, there are bad people in the world. And there are sick people in the world. And there are money and power hungry people in the world. But when you are overwhelmed by all of the these, it’s up to you to do something good. If there are lots of bad people, be one of the good people. It starts with you, right where you stand. What are YOU doing to insure that there is good in the world? It doesn’t take a lot, because the accumulation of good deeds are much more powerful than then accumulation of bad.
Give money to charity, but more importantly, give time to charity. Be a mentor or role model to young kids to let them know how much they are cared for and loved. Listen to others with no judgement – really listen to how an issue affects them. Get involved for good change, ask questions, be the voice for someone who doesn’t have one, and don’t just accept something as truth when someone in power tells you it is so.
I end each of my “The New Old You” episodes with the line “Show as much compassion for others as you yourself need today and if you do, you’ll be making the world a better place right where you are.”. And I am very proud of this sentiment. We are all fragile, but everyone around us is fragile as well and they need us to recognize that. Life is hard, but when we try to make it easier by turning all of the decisions over to others to make, we end up making it more difficult on ourselves.
Be present, use your voice and platform like I’m doing here, educate yourself and others, vote, find your place to show your good, and be compassionate to yourself and to others all around you. If you do all of these things, you will have done your part to change this world for good.
I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples. – Mother Teresa
Tonight’s Podcast Version: