Tune Out and Tune In

22 01 2017

pears

I have two pears sitting on my counter. Seeing fruit outside the fridge, in a bowl, a plant near a window, a photo from a trip hung near the piano – these are all signs that things are going to be ok. They are connections to life that exists beyond these four walls – whether in an orchard, a nursery or a vacation destination. They are things that will remain constant in what increasingly seems like a life uncertain.

A pear. A houseplant. A photo. They are not dependent on the size of my kitchen nor whether my piano is a grand piano (it’s not) or a traditional upright (it is). They are just layers of a life; proof of an existence – even if for a moment in time.

And perhaps that is what this divisive period in our nation’s history is, as well. The inauguration, the marches, the tweets – they are layers in a moment in time. Or I hope. If this nation is our “four walls” right now, then we may be looking at those things that are there to give us what we need to remind us that things will be ok.

For some, that is voting an unconventional candidate to lead our country.

For others, it is raising voices and signs in solidarity to not lose the progress that has been made so far and over so long a time.

I would be disingenuous if I didn’t admit that I am very unsettled about the direction our nation is going. Regardless of the President, I have been awoken to both the plight of fellow citizens and the reality of the real thread of bias, racism and apathy that is overlooked by many good people in the name of “change”. This disheartens me greatly yet it is not for me to judge. It is only for me to recognize what is at this moment and allow it to pass so that we are not defined by party, nor by our social security number but rather by the more complex nature of what makes us human.

That’s why those pictures and plants, children and pets, songs and favorite shows are so critical right now. Tune out of CNN and FOX and tune into YOU. That station is a lot more interesting and a lot more fun for others to watch and without all the side effects.

Until next time,

Marc

 

 

 

 

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The Continuing Tragedy of 9-11

11 09 2015

We have wasted a terrible tragedy.

We have wasted a terrible tragedy.

Today, on Facebook and all forms of media outlets, people will commemorate those horrific events that changed people forever on September 11, 2001. It is not difficult to believe that 14 years have passed as much as it is to believe that, for the most part, we are a less unified and, in my opinion, a more shallow nation than prior to that fateful date.

I remember reading an article not long after that day that had basically said that we, as Americans, had enjoyed unparalleled peace and nothing was more indicative of this than the “feel good” and “newsworthy” stories that infiltrated the nightly news and the covers of Time and Newsweek. That all changed, of course. However, what did not stick was the sense of patriotism and connectedness that was fostered in the next few months to follow.

It gets tiring to hear about the “lessons” learned from September 11th because, for the most part, they are used for negative, not positive, means such as to promote xenophobia and help boost electoral polling. No doubt, a big lesson is to not be asleep at the wheel. We have to be awake to the very real threats that surround us, our nation and as such, our futures. However, that is often used to create division, not unity.

What about the lessons about the importance of shutting out all the background noise that is not only distracting but also reflective of the worst parts of who we are? For all the issues that plague our country, we continue to soak in the Kardashians, Trump and jerks who refuse to issue marriage licenses to gay couples.

I know this sounds preachy but if we had as many outraged posts on Facebook about what we are doing to ourselves as a nation (reduced commitment to education, the disgusting impasse that we can not seem to overcome regarding gun safety and mental health, the inability or apathy associated with holding our leaders accountable to facts and not soundbites, etc), we would rise as a much stronger and proud nation. 

You may have heard the saying “don’t let a good tragedy go to waste”. I don’t know what a “good” tragedy is but I do know that is hard to think of one that has impacted so many people and will for the rest of their lives – and rocked an entire nation -like that of 9-11. We owe it to every single person lost that day and as a result thereafter, to not waste the sacrifices that were made. We owe it to do better than posting angry rants and looking to blame people who are different from us so that we can feel better about having a direct enemy. It just is not that simple.

We owe it to them to face our fears of having less than our parents and creating a next “greatest generation” that holds the future of our nation as more of a priority than the present. It makes me sad that we have devolved more into a nation of shallowness and second rate priorities. Maybe it is just me but this is a continuing tragedy – not only because of the events of September 11 but also due to the opportunities that we have seemed to overlook to come together and do the hard work.

Until next time,

Marc

Thanks again for reading. I appreciate it. If you haven’t already, please consider enrolling to get my blog posts delivered straight to your inbox through this site, email me at marckaye91@gmail.com or follow me on Twitter @marckaye1. (Better yet, how about all 3). Also, through October 15, for every new follower I get, I will be donating $1 to Nechama, a disaster relief agency, in honor of my daughter who is raising money and awareness for this great organization for her Bat Mitzvah project! Thanks again, Marc








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