My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Sunday, October 16, 2011

My opinion about the Occupy Wall Street and other similar movements...

I've been sitting and simmering over this post... and I'm finally going to share with you my thoughts on the "Occupy Wall Street" crowd.

I used to tell my boys when they were younger that if they couldn't accept responsibility for their problems that they were powerless to change their situation. You have to know where you went wrong. That's not to say that there are no victims in this world... certainly, there are. There are people who are less advantaged. There are people who find themselves in situations or circumstances that are difficult to overcome. Difficult does not mean impossible.

Are there people in this world who are obscenely wealthy? Yes. Is it their responsibility to share their wealth with you, me, the guy on the street? Maybe. Does the government have the right to Robin Hood mentality - to take from the rich to give to the poor? I don't think so.

Where did we as a society go wrong? Well. Take my life for example... if everyone in my life, including myself, had done what we should have done, my economic situation would likely be very different. If I hadn't gotten pregnant in high school, if I hadn't married Robert, if we had been more financially responsible, if we had worked harder at our marriage, if we had gone to college... see, all those things were ME. My choices, my path that I took in life. Having to depend on someone who is undependable... that was my mistake. If he doesn't pay child support... well, that's his fault... but the fact that I picked someone like that to be the father of my kids... my fault. The fact that I didn't get child support set up to be collected by the government... my fault. The fact that over all these years apart that I have only once taken him back to court... that's on me. So when I look into an empty pantry today, that's MY FAULT.

There are as many different sets of circumstances for the Occupy crowd as there are people. There are people going down to the protest site that are themselves obscenely wealthy. Kanye West went down there draped in gold jewelry. I think the rich... no, I think everybody who has anything in this world has an obligation, a moral obligation, that is, to help their fellow man. But I also believe we have the freedom of choice. My disadvantages, my poor choices don't entitle me to a crumb from anyone else... but there is a moral obligation and I believe that we are spiritually enriched by sharing with others.

Since I left Michael I have had several thousands of dollars of assistance from various friends and family members. I have had help with car repairs... car payments... house cleaning... decorating... hanging pictures... organizing my kitchen... meals brought to us... transportation to the doctor... I have been richly blessed.

I have also been sued by a creditor who I didn't pay.
I have had my house struck by lightning.
I have had my car repossessed. (and returned, thankfully)
I have had my water cut off. My power cut off. My satellite cut off.
I have bounced checks.
I have run out of money long before I ran out of month.
I have had many, many, many situations that were difficult.

But I don't blame the creditors. I don't blame the bank. I don't even blame the lightning that came from the sky. Seriously. If I hadn't moved to a cheaper place this time of economic difficulty would be a much greater crisis. I was BLESSED to be struck by lightning.

These are my choices. I made a choice to marry Robert knowing that he had some character traits that were less than desirable. I married Michael knowing that he was the kind of person who would be difficult for me to stay with. Could I have predicted the Pandora's Box that Michael hid with the unpaid bills and the infidelity, etc? No. But I knew he was not a good man from the moment that he disallowed my children to bring their pets to live with us.

The protesters, those were their choices, too. Anyone who isn't employed right now made a choice or a series of choices that led to that situation. Can I empathize with them? Absolutely. But for the grace of God, that could be me. I don't take for granted anything I have. I don't attach. Health and wealth are not guaranteed in this life.

I don't think anybody has the right to take over private or public property for an extended protest. They are denying others their liberties by supposedly fighting for their own. I don't believe that all those people are there for a legitimate reason. I think a lot of people there don't even know what they are fighting for... because if they did, they wouldn't be Occupying Wall Street... they would be occupying the White House.

I've said it many times... you can't support a socialist agenda in a capitalist economy. One or the other has to give and obviously, with this administration, it's the economy.

What kind of difference would it make in our country - or our world - if everyone gave out of their abundance of what they have to a friend, family member, person in their community who was in need? What if we voluntarily made an effort to make someone else's life better? What if we kept the government and all those pork barrel spending projects out of the equation and each of us took up our moral responsibility to help our fellow man? Each one reach one. Each person investing in the lives of someone... because no matter how much or how little we have, there is no one reading my blog who doesn't have an abundance of SOMETHING that they could share... whether it was financial assistance or encouragement (that's free, y'all!) or lending a hand with something or helping to connect an unemployed person with a job... are we really doing all we can to help our fellow man? We all have something we can share.

To the protesters I say, pack up your signs and clean up the area that you have trespassed on... go out into your world and make a difference. Stop sitting around demanding change... make that change happen.

That's what I think, anyways.


Janis said...

yay! Excellent post! :)

bein_me said...

excellent post! I shared it on my f/b wall