There is a certain vibe happening in the world now that is reminiscent of the riots and the sit-ins of the 1960’s – and it is unsettling. I’ve been trying to wrap my head around this whole Occupy Movement and it’s difficult. It’s difficult because it changes everyday and is becoming more massive. Statistically, I’m part of the 99%, but have a hard time backing the movement in its current form.
Recently, I fell victim to an Occupy Movement when my daughter built a fort in our family room and lived there for six days while she recovered from being sick. She made a picket sign calling me a nag, yet I was the one who had the responsibility of making sure she took her medicine, stayed hydrated and got enough rest. I gladly met her demands that included the Disney Channel, Bop magazine, a new pillow pet and three types of Gatorade because I wanted her to feel better. And of course, it’s hard to say no when you see your child suffering.
Does all this coddling do her any favors? Does it create a sense of entitlement every time she is sick? I don’t know. To me, it sounds more humane than throwing a can of Sprite in her room and telling her to sleep it off. Or would the later teach her perseverance?
The one thing I do know, is the older I get, the more I say, “I don’t know”.
I don’t know what the protesters on Wall Street are really trying to achieve. The irony is, their cause is reminiscent of a thousand page Congressional Bill. Inevitably, the Bill ends up getting so diluted by riders from different interest groups that the message is completely lost.
I don’t know if the 99ers have chosen the right playground. Are the folks on Wall Street really the bullies or should they be playing in front of the White House where the rules are made?
I don’t know if the 99ers are playing the right game. What is their real cause? What is the specific response they want from Wall Street? Is protesting the most effective mechanism? Wouldn’t it be more effective to turn an ideology into an idea by actually getting involved in the related process? Join a school board. Choose an alternative source of higher education if the fees are cost prohibitive. Aspire to be a great leader, not just a critic.
Children learn by example. There are some new kids on the block. They call themselves the 53ers, referring to the 53% of Americans who are paying federal income taxes. Wouldn’t it be a novel idea if the 99ers had a play date with the 53ers? How can you not be inspired from people who have a positive outlook on life and take pride in being self-made?
What is their secret? I don’t know, but I’m guessing its ingenuity and hard work. Maybe their parents didn’t wait on them hand and foot or micromanage their lives. Maybe they learned to think on their own. Or, maybe they had cans of Sprite thrown in their rooms when they were sick? I don’t know.
No matter what side you fall on, check out these blogs for some inspirational and not-so-inspirational stories of the 99ers and the 53ers. Don’t you think that blogging is so much more peaceful and effective than protesting to communicate a position and invoke change?