Sunday, October 12, 2008

Will this bring us closer together as a society, a country, even as neighbors?

During this challenging economic period for our country, I find myself listening to NPR even more than I did before. I listen to it as I prepare dinner in the evening and when making lunches in the morning. I even turn the radio on mid-day as I clean up the kitchen, or throw another load of laundry in the washer. I am spending more time than I usually do sitting with my husband and watching CNN. Until I can't take the shouting heads anymore and move on. I always notice the headlines on the cover of our morning paper. I am...tuned in.


The funny thing is that I don't feel unduly stressed by catching all of this news, most of it grim and bearing the weight of much ahead that perhaps we are ill equipped for. No, I just feel this urgent need to know what is happening in our country. I find myself slowing down a bit. Taking it in. Measuring it.

Today I started wondering if the mess that we are all in, for several, perhaps many years to come, will in fact have a silver lining. Will this bring us closer together as a society, a country, even as neighbors? Will more people make use of the many things we have available to us that are free?

Think about it. What if a large percentage of families can no longer afford to send their children to private schools. What if suddenly there was an influx of children coming back to the public schools. And those parents got involved and excited about those public schools? Imagine what we could do. How we could change the crisis that is our schools today.

What if more people started switching their radio station preference over to NPR, so that they could get the latest news on the economy. And then those people decided...wow, I get so much from this public radio station, I need to make a small donation to help support good programing.

What if...we all started planting our own gardens or sharing community gardens. We would not only be going back to the earth, but in creating composts and sharing growing methods with our neighbors we would be getting back to that feeling of belonging and connecting with others.

What if we started to look at life a little more simply. And we taught our children to do the same. What if we all come out of these tough times as better, stronger people? What if? Let your mind go...take your time.


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20 comments:

QT said...

That would definitely be a worthwhile silver lining. I'll raise my glass to that!

Kizz said...

You are a strong woman to bring such optimism to the recent news.

phd in yogurtry said...

I found myself wondering something along similar lines. What if people came back to the simpler joys of life, instead of so many high dollar entertainments (kid birthday parties held at giant arcades, one example). A decline in materialism and a return to the basics.

Thought provoking post, JCK. Thanks.

Janet said...

You should send this as a Letter to the Editor to a number of newspapers. Or an opinion piece on NPR. (I love NPR, although our particular station is probably the worst one in the country. They do at least have the news programs, everything else is classical music - morning classics, afternoon classics, evening classics, overnight classics, Saturday classics, and Sunday classics. It's always refreshing to travel and hear things like Prairie Home Companion or Fresh Air.)

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

I think one very good thing that will come out of this is that many people will have learned to carpool and plan errands to minimize driving.

A decline in materialism would be very good.

Angeline said...

somehow if all the 'what if' happens...I see chaos in the mist of harmony...its not going to be that easy I guess... some will be pleased while others will be angry... in all cases no one situation can please all, isn't it?

sonrie said...

great post! it's my first time to your blog and I find this. I'll be back. :)

Mandy said...

I feel the same way! It's a horrible time for the country, but hopefully we can all support each other through it!

Heather of the EO said...

I love this post. I've been thinking this exact same way and thinking no one else is.

There is something about hard times that brings back a bit of decency that's been missing.

Beautiful post! Thank you.

Lisa@verybusymomwith4 said...

I think if this cures our country's affluenza, we will be better off.
The 'keeping up with the Jones' has gotten out of hand :(

Lisa@verybusymomwith4 said...
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Memarie Lane said...

The school thing is a toughie. I'm a homeschooler, but I believe very much in supporting our public schools. I really don't see a way they can be fixed, TBH, but I fervently wish that that would be.

Jen said...

Well, this must be why I like you - your endearingly optimistic and hopeful nature!

g said...

How are you getting along JCK - are you in the fire area?

I'm hoping you are OK.

flutter said...

I've been thinking about you a lot.

MamaGeek @ Works For Us said...

Hey, are you in the fire area? I've been wondering whenever it's on the news.

And yes, speaking of the news, I know what you mean and it is the next great challenge.

Angie @ KEEP BELIEVING said...

This is a great optimistic post. I love it, JCK and I love the way you think.

KEEP BELIEVING

Ellyn said...

I hope our country does return to a simplier time. Let's return to a time where family is the center of our lives not our jobs, cars or houses. This stuff mentality makes me sad.

Tootsie Farklepants said...

Your optimism is inspiring indeed!

painted maypole said...

a couple days ago blogger went on strike and wouldn't let me commetn on this post - but I really appreciated your reflections on this

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