Thursday, December 16, 2010
I'm finding it extremely hard to get into the Christmas spirit. Oh, I'm excited for my grandsons (two more get added at Christmas), but saddened for those with less who search for some shred of happiness. It's easy to say count your blessings when you have them, but when you are watching your belongings and feelings of safety slip away, how do you find the energy to count the good that remains? I'm running out of positive things to say to my friends.
If someone told me I could make a wish on the Christmas Star this year, it would be that our dear friends and neighbors, people who have gone out of their way to help others and have been so good to us, would find jobs and gain back the self-respect and integrity they had. I would add in a special request that my sister find an employer who accepts and realizes what a wonderful and productive worker she is, and appreciates just that. It's a shame when you have to swallow your pride, bite your tongue, and submit to the wishes of management just to keep a roof over your head. I don't know which is worse...a crappy job that beats you into a ball of depression or no job at all which plummets you into depression's depths.
Our friends had jobs for quite a while...until the company was bought by a bigger company and the owner felt threatened by two people so close to management. So, both were fired although they were fully qualified to continue to help the new company benefit. Tennessee is an "at will" state, which pretty much means you can be screwed at any moment without any provocation.
Now, the husband's unemployment has run out, and the government, who has the power to extend those benefits to keep them clinging to a thread of hope, is engaged in a pissing contest over the Democratic versus Republican viewpoint. Isn't this just more of an indication that the two-party system continues to fail us...divide us as a nation?
In a time when so many are homeless, hopeless, and bordering on suicide to escape the stress, how can over 6000 earmarks totaling over eight billion dollars get anywhere near a bill to be passed? When I watch my friends belongings disappear through sales or repossession, I get fighting mad. Do we really need a Nikita Khrushchev memorial hiking trail? Do we need money allocated to a memorial for the biggest pork-barrel spender ever--John Murtha? I'm sorry that he passed, but he should have retired years ago like all others reaching retirement age. Congress has become a place where elected officials stay until they gasp their last breath because God-forbid they have to live the life without their white-collar benefits.
My friend had a wonderful idea. There is so much reality TV happening these days...shows like "Wife Swap." How about developing a show called, "Life Swap." An elected official has to switch places with someone suffering at the moment because of the economy. While the "sufferer" goes to Congress and engages in useless rhetoric, the Congress person or Senator has to come live in the "sufferer's" shoes, try to eak out an existence on unemployment benefits...not counting when the benefits cease to exist. I wonder how large the viewing audience would be for that?
So, now that I've expressed my feelings, I'm going to continue to search for a way to help my friends. I'm not a wealthy person or I would give them the moon. I'm a senior citizen so my time on earth is limited in years, but I fear for my children and grandson who have already been living life under the thumb of a government who cares more about who's right and who's wrong over what is human and real.
I pray that everyone reading this can find the real reason for Christmas, as I've just reminded myself. It's only one day, set aside to be thankful for the gift given us so long along by God. Somewhere, someone came up with the saying "God will provide," but I think we eventually have to learn to take care of ourselves just like our children do. We can't rely on God for everything...support, strength, yes, but we have to become responsible for our actions or lack thereof. Grow up America, and take a little off the Lord's shoulders. If we all turn a blind eye to what is happening outside our cozy little piece of the US, then something is wrong.
Help someone else have a Happy Holiday. I plan to, although I'm not quite sure how at the moment. I wish you all God's blessings...because yes, I do believe.