Fairness… Equality… Respect…

Originally posted Aug 1, 2013 at & moved from: http://patrick642.wordpress.com/
Change. Improve. Innovate. Be better.
~ Pressing issues, from cyber security, to strategy, to innovation, to improvements (self, others, organizations)

This piece is long, it was meant to be long due to this grouping of topics being so deeply and greatly fundamental to me.

Will we ever get to a point of more equitable fairness, in our lifetimes, for anything? Will we ever see respect accorded to each other, on a massive basis, as we go through our daily lives? What about equality, do you believe we will see that truly happen in our lifetimes?

Oh and when I say lifetime, I don’t mean in the next four or five years, I mean in the next 10 – 20 or even 30 years. Because at the rate we’re moving along, it appears these things will not be easily gained in a more equitable timeframe, will it…? Women and their right to vote (Suffragette movement) – how long ago was this? Blacks got the right to vote (emancipation / civil rights act / voting rights act) – how long ago did all these take place? After decades of fighting for and winning the right to do anything, it should mean things become easier, not more difficult. And it for sure does not mean we go backwards as we witness what is occurring in N. Carolina (the new massively restrictive voting rights issues taking place – check out The Rachel Maddow Show site (http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/) for more info, or better yet, check out the NAACP site (http://www.naacp.org) as they are squarely in the middle of it).

I was raised in the north and the south so I have a pretty good perspective of how things are for both sides of the track. I went to black grade schools (in the south & the north); then in junior high, I went to a black school but also attended a Jewish junior high (over two years) as part of an exchange program (that is before Nixon cancelled the program, for whatever reason, maybe budgetary) and then to a predominantly white high school, in the south.

All my life, and I do mean from the very earliest years (don’t ask me how I knew what I did but I did) I had high expectations of things becoming better, much better for everyone to live together – not just in America but around the world. We would all become better citizens of the planet. Effusive? Schmaltzy? Maudlin? To you maybe it is. But, it is my effusiveness and I believe it is worthy. I could never understand the hatred, on both sides, until later in life. I could not fathom why people cannot just learn to be better around each other, until later in life. Maybe I was naïve for years but it was my dream and still is, to see more harmony amongst more people – especially as the world becomes ever smaller and resources (jobs, water, etc.) start to become more difficult to obtain. Are we going to revert to an even more selfish society as jobs dry up? As clean water dries up? Are we going to see more squabbling, in our own country, as the air becomes more polluted and deadlier from all the pollutants clogging the atmosphere (name it – methane, CO2, and on and on…).

Yep, call me maudlin for wanting a better society for all to live in. One where you actually can walk down the street without hearing car doors lock. One where you see people talking to each other as they pass each other on the streets, instead of having their heads buried in their cell phones or smartphones.

Yep, call me schmaltzy for wanting to see the day when one does not patronize or cast aspersions or judge others by the color of the others’ skin or by the: a) Way others talk, b) Partner one is with, c) Gender of the partner they are with, d) Religion others believe in – or do not believe in, e) Job they hold, even if they are a sanitation worker, a mail clerk or a mom.

Yep, call me effusive for my dream, for my promised land – not in any biblical scene but one rooted in the physical, tangible world. My promised land is one where all people, men, women, boys and girls, of all races, of all religions or no religion, of all shapes and sizes, of any sexual preference can freely live their lives. One where they can: — Go to school without fear of having acid thrown in their faces or being shot. — Drive a car without having a male relative present. — Walk in public and have a good time without fear of discrimination or be shot for it. — Work and earn a good living and work their way up the company ladder and earn the same pay as all others in the company, regardless of gender.

If we continue to have persecution, suppression and discrimination – now, in the 21st century, did, we as a people, not learn anything over the past 148 years (slavery)? Or for that matter, over the last several thousand years (Christian crusade and religious tyranny / regional & global war – domination by suppression and genocide). Why does it take disasters and calamities to bring us closer together? Why can’t we be closer every day, everywhere? Are people afraid of others doing better than they are? If so, people have to work on being/doing better themselves, to move ahead. Because ultimately, it will mean some sacrifice to become better – many of us have done so.

We should not be looking at and judging others by the color of their skin (and cast that unfair aspersion on an entire race) or what gender they are! 2013 and we still have discrimination against others, for no real reason, other than to suppress and dominate the other.

We SHOULD be looking at the integrity and character of others and judging them on who they are.

But most of all, I continue to wonder who the next Martin Luther King, or Rosa Parks, or Mahatma Ghandi or even an Abraham Lincoln will be. Who will be the one to step into those kinds of shoes…?

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Political parties and our future

Originally posted Aug 1, 2013 at & moved from: http://patrick642.wordpress.com/
Change. Improve. Innovate. Be better.
~ Pressing issues, from cyber security, to strategy, to innovation, to improvements (self, others, organizations)

Politics. At some point in the future, with the way things are nose diving in politics, we may wind up with a one party system for the country (maybe even one for N. American as a continent – but that is way off in the future).

So many politicians are in office nowadays primarily looking out for themselves rather than their constituents and the country. What happened along the way to get to this point where these selfish individuals want to line their pockets while in office or once they get out of office? What happened to those folks who went to Washington to do selfless work for the people of the country rather than completely toeing the party line, even if it makes no sense to them? Yet they kowtow to their party leaders, sometimes with no self-recrimination. What happened to those bold individuals who would stick up for things that were just and right, even if it did mean they were only a one term politician? But what they stick up for just may end up paving the way for new progress and improvements for those who follow them. What they do ‘might’ break the logjam that continues to hold us back from actually being the GREATEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD.

Is it that the allure of being in the spotlight brings out the worse candidates to public office? Or rather, maybe I should say that it brings out the worse of that candidate/political member… Or is it the allure of making buckets of money while they are in office and then after they leave office? We know that a lot of individuals go in to office with a modest bank balance but at some point along the way they seem to have millions of dollars in the bank and in investments. Is greed the factor that draws so many individuals to the highest public office now. Many individuals who should be running simply cannot afford to so, what with the steep, STEEP cost of running for office and/or remaining in office. We should not need to have candidates for president raise and spend $1,000,000,000 (billion). Neither should we be seeing candidates for mayors, governors, congress or senate now be required to raise millions of dollars for their war chest to run and compete against other candidates who might be rich or well funded. We need to somehow rejigger the methodology of how we get good and decent candidates to run for office, without all this massive amount of spending…

I favor no one party blindly but I will say that I am an independent who leans heavily to the democratic party. But, I don’t follow that party blindly just because they are democrats. So if you are of a different party that is your right, just don’t hate me or respond negatively just because of the party difference. We are supposed to be one country, one where we should be able to speak our minds – but not rabidly without commonsense and common courtesy. Be passionate but not bullheaded, stick in the mud or ostrich in the sand passionate.

We have to hear what all parties say and do “our own homework/research” to get more ground truth and complete facts. Not just one side of the story. This is what is killing us, so many people listen to just one side on a daily basis and they end up with this vicious bubble filter (actually, read Eli Pariser’s book on “The Filter Bubble ” and gain some insight from that). Then these folks stay in that filter bubble and close their minds to new, fresh, different ideas – all because they may be too unsettling for them to come across something different, even if what they come across may be more true. I would say, “to each their own” but this is too important for so many people in this country to get in and stay in those filter bubbles. It is flat out dangerous.

We have too many in the different political parties that already make it more expensive and dangerous to be involved. We have states and cities around the country that are sneaking in bills that are harmful to the people of the state. Rather than debating the topic at hand, these bill sponsors rename the bill with something esoteric and stash it in another bill and then sneak the bill in at the deadline…

Maybe we do need one party in this country, one that is for the people that treats all Americans with dignity and respect. Whether they are women, people of different races, have lower educational backgrounds – the point is, we are supposed to be helping each other, not making the “have not’s” suffer as they are. All Americans should be getting a fair shot, not because they belong to just one party (‘ours’ – not ‘theirs), because for sure if you suppress someone, you are not being fair.

Do we need to change the political party system? Because to me, this bicameral one is having far too many expensive and ineffectual issues. We have to stop all these stalemates and get things moving. We all know. sorry – I mean ‘many of us’ know that the longer we delay projects, they become more expensive. And we have to start thinking of the future, strategically and put things in place now (even if they are expensive) so we can reap the benefits and rewards down the road.

Okay, enough on this for now – I just get riled up hearing all these political fights that make no sense. Conservative or Progressive – we need to be fair and help everyone up.