The experience I had the last 3 weeks working with this particular insurance company, although brief, had a very powerful influence on my thoughts.
The families we visited were mainly lower middle class, blue collar and hardworking but the one thing missing was the belief that they could move themselves from their current circumstance to something better.
Time and time again the conversations would turn to the fact that they believed because their own grandparents, parents, siblings or relatives had always lived a certain lifestyle that it was just the way things were. They believed that they would never get beyond were they were and that their children would end up the same way.
It was almost like they had no hope. I found this ironic since almost every household we went to were these “God fearing Christian Americans”. This was evident in the Holy Bible sitting on their dining room or coffee tables. The Trump Pence and NRA stickers displayed on their vehicles. The boasted displays of the soldier heroes or veterans of their families. The American Flag displayed prominently on their front porches or on flag poles in their yards.
I always believed, despite my own upbringing, that Americans could do anything they set their mind to. It seems like this has been lost through the years. It’s almost like our society as a whole gave up hope or belief in ourselves. I just don’t know when that changed. I realized later that it is a state of mind that is influencing our society.
A World Health Organization article said “Depression is a common mental disorder. Globally, more than 300 million people of all ages suffer from depression…” What was surprising was in a related article from September 2016 that stated the United States was ranked 3rd behind India and China as one of the most depressed countries.
The mass media plays up all the negatives of everyday life and one has to actively seek out the positives. This has impacted not only the way we view others but the way we view ourselves.
It is one of the reasons why I just don’t watch the news anymore and hardly watch television. I still go to sites and blogs to find out information but even then sifting through what’s the truth or not is tedious and somewhat time consuming.
In our recent elections the American public believed that the only way we could “get better” was by electing a non-politician, a business person to the highest office and to lead us.
Yet everything I read in business articles, news and economic reports puts the US as still #1 in power and #3 in cultural influence. So I’m not sure why the general consensus among Americans is that we are “losing” at something? The only thing we have lost is that “Can do” attitude we always seemed to have.
It has now been replaced by a sense of entitlement and “Me, me, me”. It’s no wonder we are ranked 3rd for depression. Instead of charging ahead and initiating change we’ve become complacent.
We no longer stand together as “one nation” instead we’ve become so divided among ourselves the country as a whole is suffering. Even when people come together it has turned into this compartmentalized action focused on one specific group instead of making it about equality for every man, woman and child.
We were always considered this melting pot of diversity encompassing and accepting many people from all walks of life or cultures but something happened to that way of thinking along the way. I truly believe that what happened to us on September 11th, 2001 was the catalyst for what is occurring with us now.
That event changed how we perceived the world at large and it took away our sense of security. It put us into these now “war zones”, drove up our national debt, and plummeted our economy. These wars have sent home traumatized men and women who will never be the same again.
Our now generation “Y” or millennials, as they are known, have not known a year without war in their lifetime. They have been exposed to death and destruction most of their life. Social media has brought it to the forefront, it’s easily accessible anyplace, anywhere and at any time.
So with all of this occurring, what’s the answer? Many citizens believed it was the political system that had failed us. In reality it was always our decision to support or not support the people we elected to those positions.
We had the collective power to say “no more” but we didn’t.
We had the “voice” to demand changes but we mostly remained silent.
Now most are just existing in life because they cannot see the power they hold in their own hands; the power to change or instill changes.
Until that happens, we will continue to just live day to day, accepting our life the way it is and that light of hope is starting to dim but it’s not gone yet.
It takes the courage of many to keep the light shining and bring back that beacon of strength and unity that once embodied that “American Way of Life”.
Thank you for stopping by.
Have a good Sunday!