Today I have a great granddaughter turning one year old. It set me to thinking what kind of example am I setting for her and what will she learn from the example I Set. It opened another line of thought about how we as adults are influenced by what we saw and heard growing up. Thinking in that vain we might be able to answer the question we sometimes ask about others and how we might apply the same question to ourselves.
The question being “What makes Him or Her tick?
I am not a professional at these things but I have faced many situations where answering that question quickly was needed. Sometimes people miss an opportunity to have a real discussion. The behavior you often see is not the real person in many cases.
No, past or childhood situations don’t always mold the person in all cases but some life situations alter a persons perspective and influence decisions in some cases. Joining a cause is one example. Be it the fight against cancer, a call to a political party, or the joining of a service club.
Take the current tensions in society Canada first this time. When it comes to refugees, it has always been a negative backlash. Go back in our history. That’s only 153 years. The English did their best to ethnically cleans the Maritimes by expelling the French. At one point, Italians were the target. Then it was Irish Catholics, the Ukrainians and eastern Europeans.
The big “hissy fits” came when the Chinese, Japanese and people from India wanted to join the family. Even worse the Muslims.
Some people shout its the work of white supremacists. How can those who hate feel superior when the trigger emotion for hate is usually fear? If your are afraid you don’t feel as superior as you pretend to be.
After all this huffing and puffing, what was the result? The fact is the Muslims, nor Buddhists, Sikhs, nor Irish Catholics sought to fundamentally change the society or its laws to convert the masses to their will.
Other behaviors are influenced by what people feel facts aside. Years ago when I worked in radio before the internet, more than once I had someone on the phone being coy. From their demeanor I took no chances. We phoned the RCMP, traced the call and rescued the person committing suicide. Those three experiences influenced my thinking to ask. “What’s really going on?”
Another reaction of suspect behavior may come from depression, anxiety or fear or worse yet, the loss of a child. The latter is a club you never want to belong to. I know that all too well.
Today we have too many people with too much month and not enough money, we have people afraid to go to the store. We have too many who scoff at whatever action is being taken. The reason? In my view fear does strange things to people that create negative attitudes.
This creates division and a blame game. In Canada we haven’t been perfect it what has been done but unlike our neighbors to the south, we have done something. We have leaders who trust science and not snake oil solutions.
So what are the catalysts for all this negativity? Fear, uncertainty and a world moving to fast with too many facts to absorb, we have well meaning people who believe in conspiracies, to explain what cannot be explained. We have people who think, I am young and immune.
There are those who believe in faith alone, listening to those who have their own agenda. There are those who say science doesn’t have all the answers, and others who do not value faith. The truth is no one has all the answers or the problem would be solved. Right now Mother Nature is in charge, and she has a harsh condemnation for us all.
Our actions and misspoken words in the midst of societies troubled waters have more lessons and meaning than we realize. At present we can do something positive that takes nothing more than a bit of time. We can listen to each other, we can comfort one another and before we are quick to judge or condemn, remember the words of the old song Walk A Mile In My Shoes.
That is the first step to changing the equation that will bring us together.