Thursday, February 15, 2018

Getting Political - about the value of human life

A wise friend, a lawyer no less, wrote this the day after a tragic event. She compassionately brings up a cultural lack of compassion, anger, disenfranchisement and dismissiveness, and in the face of the natural urge to place blame, speaks of trying to make a difference to help us move forward.

I quote her directly, and with honor.

I will tell you with 100% certainty that our schools are not equipped to deal sufficiently with the mental health well-being of our children and their classmates. And, early intervention is crucial. How about instead of funding a wall and more weapons of mass destruction, we prioritize our schools - the place our children reside 35+ hours per week - the place that is very often the only surrogate for a child's missing stable home? How about instead of pumping money and energy into our prison system, arming guards, and adjudicating criminal behavior post-event, we pump money and energy into bolstering compassionate care for troubled children and their families (who are often beyond desperate for resources and help)? So many of these young people are written off as bad, crazy, damaged, etc., when they actually are suffering horribly - often in silence - often unaware of it themselves - mental illness, early childhood trauma, attachment disorder, PTSD, you name it. How about applying early compassionate care in the form of emphasizing reparative health and training instead of emphasizing punishment and judgment? Instead of ignoring suffering children who are walking time bombs, how about believing in our ability to assist them and invest in them - hey, if we don't care about them, well then what about the lives of their future victims ? How about taking, dare I say, a more matriarchal approach? Think about how difficult life is for YOU, as an adult, with presumably developed coping skills. Now imagine life for a child with little support.

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