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  • Hmmmm....

    Well, I suppose I should say something about the New Year, but I am wondering exactly what that should be? Having just published my first book, I am hoping this coming year brings success for that, of course, but that seems a little petty when I think of all the other things that are happening on our planet.

    Gun Control

    I've actually gotten some comments and extra love on a piece I've posted here on Cowbird about guns and irresponsible people. My prayer for the New Year would be that people who advocate gun control start to realize that guns are not the problem. Look around at countries where guns are banned or at least very difficult to own and you will find heinous crimes against other people committed with bats, cars, knives, and all sorts of alternative devices. Human beings are extremely creative when it comes to creating mayhem and havoc. Guns are machines, nothing more than metal and wood or plastic. They have no anima, they have no agenda, and they certainly are not sentient.

    Compassion

    Throughout the world, people are going without the basic necessities of life: Food and Shelter. Now I happen to agree with Maslov, when a human being is reduced to making these their primary concern, they regard things like socialization and other higher order intangibles as secondary. When you relegate an individual to a dog-eat-dog world, you force them to be less that human. And please do not misunderstand me. I am not calling them animals by choice. I am saying our disregard for their welfare has reduced them to living like animals. Perhaps it is time the “civilized” nations of the world start acting like they are civilized. Perhaps it is time for “humanity” to live up to its name.

    Unity

    Closely tied to the paragraph above, isn't well past the time to differentiate ourselves? Regardless of race, religion, creed, ethnic background or sexual orientation, aren't we all human beings? We all have histories, some parts to be proud of, others to be ashamed of. Would it be so difficult to write a set of basic rules from the things we did right, and denounce the things we did wrong? If we are to advance beyond the 'sins' of our past, we must first learn to acknowledge them, and then to forgive them. If we are to become truly enlightened as a race, we must put away our petty quarrels and respect one another based on what we do now and in the future. The past is the past. We cannot change it, we cannot correct it. We can only move forward.

    Community

    Also closely related to the two paragraphs above. We have become isolated to the extreme, shuttering our lives into the walls of our houses and homes, afraid of the media's constant insistence that our world has suddenly become unsafe, consumed by evil. We are content to remain lost in our virtual worlds, where confrontation is easily diffused by the click of a mouse. Even our children are so consumed by their smartphones, they will pass another person they know and text them rather than say hello. We have become comfortable with isolation and personal autonomy to the point of ignoring our neighbors and community.

    While I know that description does not apply to all nations, it is rapidly becoming the norm instead of the exception. And the more isolated and paranoid we become, the more we ignore the needs of the people at the fringe, the people who most need our attention and our help to realize they are not alone, they are a part of our community.

    Commitment

    Above all, I would hope that 2013 brings forth a new commitment to the principals upon which this nation was founded, the principals that have served as a beacon of hope for the planet for more than 200 years. The principal of the sanctity and value of the individual to allow him or her to become the best person they can be.

    In other words, I pray that each and every one of us will be filled with hope, compassion, and love for our fellow human beings.

    ~Fred~
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