Sunday, October 25, 2009

24/7 Behind the Tussle for the Texas Instrument Pt. 5 - Larry's Final Thought

How do you know when talk is no longer effective and the time to roll up one’s sleeves and politely ask someone to dance is in order? I am a peace loving man and have never been one to actively seek out violence, even when threatened. Part of it is fear. Part of it is just not wanting to be bothered with the fighting process. The punching of the faces, the scraping of the knees, and the bruising of the egos. It’s just not my cup of tea. The one thing I cannot tolerate however is injustice as I see it, and especially directed at me. Not privately and definitely not in any public arena like high school (population 3,000 plus on any given day). It was just a calculator after all. Had I been sliced in the throat, would it have been worth it then? Had I stabbed him and been arrested, as I most certainly would’ve been, then what? What set of principles are truly worth risking one’s life for? I don’t have children but I can’t imagine telling my kids to fight to the death for a calculator. I also can’t tell my kids not to stand up for themselves. I guess all I will be able to do is create an environment where they don’t feel like they don’t ever have any options or that they can’t come to me with issues. But why should I even wait for my unborn children to start creating that kind of environment?

My tale is not extreme by any stretch of the imagination. It pales in comparison to many war stories from other’s who grew up in that era and who attended schools much much worse. I’m sure it pales in comparison to Palestinian, Haitian, or any other teenager’s plight growing up in first world countries with third world circumstances. I am not oblivious to the world around me but I do reside in a select part of that world for which I posses a territorial allegiance. Although I am quick to yell “Brooklyn, “Queens”, “NY”, and state my loyalties to any other slab of real estate I call home, I have yet to accept any social responsibility for that jurisdiction. Judging by the rash of recently publicized incidents in and around urban neighborhoods, I would say circumstances haven’t gotten much better than when I grew up. What is crazy to me is that random violence still takes place and that the value we place on our lives remain readily exchanged for material goods. What’s crazy to me is that some of us that have made it out, literally left and never looked back. We wanted to get as far away from that environment as possible and who can blame us? What’s crazy to me is that no one even considers that to be crazy anymore.

Sidebar; No one should have to evolve in the midst of chaos and certainly no one in their right mind would choose to remain in dire conditions after gaining the ability to select otherwise. Fearing for your safety constantly is not normal. It may be the norm, but it is not normal. Not realizing the after effects and attitudes towards yourself and community as a result of your upbringing is also not healthy however. When fear is your motivator, you learn to operate only under duress. If there is no strife, you will either manufacture it or cease to function with a heightened degree of effectiveness. For those of us that haven’t graduated to confidence as a primary catalyst for governance but have removed ourselves from harms way, there could be sense of emptiness in our accomplishments for they are no longer a matter of life or death. The thrill is gone so to speak. I wonder if we should put some of those fears to good use and concern ourselves with the well being of others? Who knows how many fights, deaths, jail sentences, and long-winded blogs could have been averted if there were more after school programs or mentorships in place? Sidebar complete.


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