When Does the Pain Stop?

Week 71

When Does the Pain Stop?

The receptionist at my job told me a dear friend asked her this question in light of last week’s disaster. The sound byte answer is, “In four years.”The real answer takes a bit more time.

I’ve written this post several times over in my mind and in notes. Each time, I could not hold back the anger and disgust I still feel for the results, and the shame I now have for my country, my state and those who share my epidermal pigmentation. But that does nothing. Others have written more words with more eloquence than I can. Still others have taken to the streets in fine USA fashion to protest and try to get their voices heard (in spite of that deplorable all-noise-not-news channel calling the protests “Temper Tantrums,” as if they didn’t have their own ongoing hissy-fits starting in November 2008). The fact that we have elected an unqualified person who surrounds himself with bigotry, even greater ignorance than his and a bevy of haters (as if to make himself look better) has come from better-known and more respected mouths than mine. Even if it bears repeating.

And repeating. And repeating, until we as a country learn.

If we can learn, that is.

My income-paying job is teaching. English/Language Arts, Social Studies, basic Science and maths, these are all on my agenda for GED and dislocated worker students. Most will “get it” and learn what is required for their next steps in life. However, there are a few – statistically about 20% - who will never catch on. Most of those won’t because they refuse to try.

That is what hurts the most. I cannot teach those who choose to fail anymore than I could drill a hole in their heads and pour in tolerance and goodness. The lesson seems to be too hard for half our country. It involves change. As someone who often refers to Change as an Itch with a B, I can understand. However, as a teacher, I have to point out that Change is LIFE. If we do not change, if we do not grow, if we do not expand our thoughts, .

Perhaps that’s the idea: these people who wish to now be our face to the world are of the sort that would rather kill something than let it live outside their narrow visions. With this election, they’ve declared that for all of us: the United States of America, with liberty and justice , must die if they have to tolerate “others.”

Well, they have that in common with ISIL and any number of totalitarian states around the world. I guess, then, these folks simply want to fit in with China, Russia, Iran and more countries in Africa than I can name. That’s their global awareness. Hate the other and celebrate the inflexibility that will inevitably break the country.

It may only take four years to do it, too.

I’ve said to the point of cliché that I always hope. I do. I don’t know yet how to counteract this poison bubbling to the surface, but I am willing to learn.

I expect it will be painful. I’ve had several sleepless nights since the 8th, and I expect several more, as the announcements of the unqualified appointments continue, but pain is part of growth.

So, how about you?

Tá súil agam i gcónaí!

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