It’s a little after 4am on January 20th. I believe it was the cat puking that caused me to wake up. Getting up and stepping in said cat puke on the way to the bathroom only confirmed my awake status.
I apologize in advance for the below rambling note but I have to get this hairball of thoughts out of my system. Read or read not.
I heard that today, January 20th, is an important day for a lot of people. A start of an important weekend in our history. Good and/or bad.
I lay here typing this rambling note in my bed, in my warm house, with a mug full of coffee, on my computer and for all that I am thankful. I am also thankful, although there are plenty of days that I curse it, that I have a great job that pays me well, that allows me to do a little good in this world and that covers most of my health insurance.
I am lucky.
I am also a white, American male. I can’t help that and since I have no desire to change that status I am who I am. I make no apologies for my status.
That said, I am confused by our world these days. I am confused about what I read. Is it real or is it not. We live in a world in which, in my opinion, the majority of external communication and stimulus is driven by the negative.
Because of this I have developed a particular disdain for people. Heck, in my own little electronic community I’ve seen a dramatic increase in the rhetoric of hate and violence from otherwise sane, positive people.
Somewhere we’ve lost the art of the compromise. Somewhere along the way we’ve lost the ability to communicate in respectful terms when we disagree.
It’s okay to disagree. It’s okay to compromise. It’s okay to have divergent opinions. It is critical to have open, respectful discourse with one another.
Spewing hatred and violence is not okay in any circumstance. All it does, in my opinion, is help drive the negative energy in today’s society. A quote I love from Dr. King, “Hate begets hate; violence begets violence; toughness begets a greater toughness. We must meet the forces of hate with the power of love.” Ah, the power of love.
I wish I had answers. For example, I wish I could tell you how to make healthcare work for everyone. Don’t be fooled, healthcare is a business. It’s a business that for a lot of people today, doesn’t work well. Don’t kid yourself, the delivery of healthcare is a business. Big business. A business driven by profits. A business driven to bring value to shareholders first and patients second. A business laden with administrative processes that strangle the ability to deliver quality care to people when, where and how they want it. A business that delivers a health premium to employers characterized by double digit percentage increases in expenses year after year. At this trajectory employers will ultimately not be able to subsidize healthcare for their employees. It’s already happening. A business that needs to put the patient first not profits.
Whoa, that was quite the tangent.
My wish for the nation today is to embrace the three E’s: Educate, Engage and Empower. Don’t sit back and accept the rhetoric. Be an agent of positive change. It is in your power. It is your responsibility.
Let’s do this together