Several months ago I wrote an opinion piece entitled "What Are We All Whining About?" Some people have expressed interest in more on that topic. So, I'll try to expand a bit here – and will probably need to write more posts in the future.
This whole issue is like the tendrils of an octopus.
Let's take, for example – politics.
In 2008 we voted for Obama to be our President. It was a daunting task he had ahead of himself. But he promised to bring about change. We all remember those speeches. But, how many of us recall the rest of his promise….He said, he would do his part but it would be up to each and every one of us to do our part as well. He told us we would need to hold his feet (and by extension the feet of all our elected political leaders) to the fire.
What did we do? We let him take on the near collapse of the country by himself. When he didn't do everything he had promised in the first two years — things that we individually decided was most important – we voted out his Democratic support system in the Congress and started looking for ways to victimize Obama. You know how it went…of course, he's a black man, he wasn't born in the United States, he didn't do what I want. We have fought him every step of the way. Many in this country have made scapegoating the President a never-ending agenda. They have declared that they will get rid of him – no matter what it takes – even if it means destruction of this country. It's become a personal vendetta for them.
Now I'm not saying we shouldn't be evaluating what he's done and his achievements. And, I'm not saying he and his actions are above reproach. But, what I am saying is that we forgot our side of the contract. We forgot that change is a very, very slow process. Nothing happens overnight…unless you're God and you are all-powerful. Obama was tasked with accomplishing near impossibilities – and doing it in a democratic framework where everyone has an opinion and a personal agenda.
So now Obama has delivered on the vast majority of his promises…but we've tied his hands now that he's focusing on helping to get the economy moving and the vast unemployed numbers of citizens employed. He can't just wave a magic wand and make this happen. He has to work within the framework of the democratic framework that our founding fathers put in place to ensure the best interests of the country. He has to work with Congress – a congress that refuses to work with him.
It's ever so much easier to criticize…he's not American-born, he's black, he didn't do what I want..it's Obama's fault that America is becoming more and more polarized.and the list goes on. And we all play into biases of media and others instead of giving credit where credit is due….instead of doing what we can to help alleviate the problems.
Where is this leading us? Well, let's think. When was the last time that you gave credit to another person for their efforts? When did you last say "Thank you" when someone did a good turn? When did we recognize that another person might be having a bad day? On the other hand, when was the last time you cut another driver off in traffic, ran into another person who just happened to be in your way? How many times today did you criticize another person – for the cut of their hair, the clothes they were wearing, the way they did a job? Just saying.
And what about all those companies that claim that they are doing all they can to create jobs? Have you looked at their offices lately and taken note of the scores of empty desks? How many of those companies put applicants through the paces – expecting as many as six interviews for the privilege of filling one of those empty desks – I'm not talking about obviously unqualified applicants but applicants who have unbelievable skills experience and/or references?
Condominiums and People Who Serve
If you live in a condominium where you have a board of directors tasked with care of your common elements, when was the last time you stooped to pick up a piece of paper haplessly dropped by someone else? When was the last time you thanked your board members for going above and beyond the call of duty with no compensation or hope of recouping lost time or money?
Instead of whining, let's cut others a little slack and give credit where credit is due. Let's give a helping hand to others instead of looking for ways to devalue them and their efforts. Let's each look for ways to make our little piece of the world just a little bit more civil and pleasant than it was yesterday. It's really not that difficult. We're all in this together.Together we thrive – divided we fall.