Sunday, November 30, 2008

Without TV +1 = Terrorism and Gratitude

It's day one without television and I was going to write about all the withdrawl symptoms I'm experiencing and how I found an unending source of entertainment dealers and pushers who offer free t.v. and movies over the Internet providing countless hours of electronic feeds to the hungry monkey on my back. But instead, I once again was reminded today of just how good I have it, as do many others in the developed USA and that the luxury of t.v. is just that, a luxury and a not all an important one to boot.

I broke down this morning and wept while reading The New York Times reporter, Nicholas D. Kristof's article Terrorism That's Personal over the acid attacks on women in Pakistan and others areas of Asia. Want to put things in perspective? Read the article. Want to know how insane and fearful we really are? Read about the senseless trampling of and subsequent death of the temporary Wal-Mart worker on Long Island on Friday. And of course, the large scale systematic Mumbai murders this past week will have you scratching your head in amazement.

"Fearful" You say? Yes, it's all fear based. Why would anyone take to the horrific act of intentionally disfiguring his wife by pouring acid on her face after the couple divorced? Why would a group of male, motorcycling marauders dowse teenage girls with the same acid on their way to school just because they wanted to get an education? Fear. I imagine the thinking goes something like this: 'if women get educated then they'll be empowered and if they get empowered than us men will be less than the women and that can't happen because then the women will be in charge and before you know it they'll want us to stay at home and cook and clean and do whatever else they tell us to do.'

Fear drives all anger and acts of hate. From the
insidious rumor mongering about a co-worker to the extreme and abhorrent operations in Mumbai. The anger that many of my business clients relay to me about being passed-over at promotion or bonus time comes from fear and it goes like this: 'That bastard got the promotion and I didn't. (Subtext: 'I'm less-than, no good, not smart enough, or appreciated enough. Soon, they'll fire me and I'll be without a job and then I'll lose my home and end up living on the street and then I'll die of tuberculosis or meet some other unthinkable fate.')

Fear is disguised in many forms and I myself am not immune to it. Let's all just stop and take a breath when frustration starts to boil over to anger. Frustration is inevitable but anger is avoidable. Just be aware. "Why am I angry? Is it because I am afraid that if "they" get more than their fair share I'll be left with less?" Take pause good people, at home, at work, at the mall and especially at the Post Office. Ask yourself, "Is it that important to be right?" Yours and my anger will not fix nor correct any problems, it will only exacerbate them. It not only poisonous to your nervous system, it also takes years off of your life and of the those around you.

This evening instead of watching endless t.v. shows all about nothing, I will be huddled on the sofa, with a roof over my head, reading a book with the knowing that I truly have it so good and prayers and hopes for a calmer less angry world. If you're experiencing unspent anger consider channeling it to the Progressive Women’s Association who helps the "acid" victims and advocates for women's rights violations. Another progressive organization that "addresses the unique needs of women in conflict and post-conflict environments" is one that my wife and I are actively involved, Women For Women International.

One thing is for sure, I'm glad that I am a Happiest.
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