This is a subject that many before me have written about with far better writing skills and more profound thoughts. I do however have my take and wish to express it.
I am a dying breed. When I and my generation are gone, I fear there will be few that will have the stomach for confrontation and a fight for the old morals that built our North America. Being a Canadian and having spent many wonderful years as a Snowbird in the United States, I feel we are so much alike in our history that we could be considered as a close family. We were brought up with strict life and moral ethics. We had our religion whether it be Protestant, Roman Catholic, Jewish or Whatever. We did have guidelines; there were things we did not talk about except perhaps in the privacy of our family and home. Swearing was rarely heard. If you had family or personal problems, they were handled privately.
We were not without our faults by any means. Instead of smoking pot, we were caught up with tobacco: Pipes, cigars and cigarettes, chewing and snuff were not so much of a problem except there were many that were hidden away from the public with much of their faces removed from mouth cancers. Alcohol consumption was also a problem and many died including some of my relatives from cirrhosis of the liver.
My concerns are for the generation that is now coming into the world and up to the age of about 35 to 50 years old. The parents in this category are almost helpless in fighting off the evils surrounding them. They have little or no desire to buck the system and take a stand against lying, fowl language, disrespect, fornication, abortion and same sex marriage. We are told that we must look up to and respect those that are in high places in government and business and yet we give some of the most corrupt, authority over our well being. It has to be very confusing for young people to be told to respect and obey a leader that doesn’t deserve it.
Veterans have been coming home from wars for as long as this planet has been occupied by human beings. My experience as a boy of 9 or 10 welcoming relatives and friends back from the 2nd. WW was a sense of euphoria for all involved. Our warriors were so happy to be home that they just wanted to get back to a life of work, family and normalcy. Most wanted to put their past few years behind them and very few wanted to speak much about it. Many secrets were hidden never to be revealed of the atrocities that were performed during these wars. If there were problems with thousands of returnees, we in the general public did not hear about them. Was it a well kept secret?
We are told today that in the USA alone, an average of 26 veterans commit suicide a day. Why? Is war more horrible now than in the past? If anything our soldiers are better protected now than ever before. I fear that the lack of discipline to-day has caused young people to be less prepared for the ravages placed on them than their predecessors. Morals and a faith in a higher power were what got most through in the past but there is little of that today. This is a “me –me” selfish generation with little regard for the next guy.
Young people are spewing their every thought out to the world through the electronic media, as if anyone cared, but they do care or they wouldn’t get so much response. Try to shock your friends with the worst thought you can conceive whether you mean it or not. There it is for the world to view, potential employers, parents, grandparents and siblings all begin to have an image of you that may or may not represent the true you. You’re not employed, your school work suffers, you want the normal things of life, a car, nice clothes, money for a night out. Naturally you are going to become depressed, and then angry, you start to think, there must be a way out. The easy way out is suicide. But that is final, am I ready for FINAL?
The answer is so simple and so many avoid it. Kneel down and place your whole being in the hands of your loving God. He is a God that created you and made you in his image. Why would he forsake you when he loves you more than you could possibly know? But you must come to him. You must want help and be ready to pour your sins out to him rather than to the world through cyber space. We are what we are, but we can be better. It takes work and dedication to a plan. A bucket list is a great idea. After a hospital stay of over 5 weeks as a result of a horrible auto accident over 50 years ago, I made what I called a “Life Want list” of about 20 wants for my future. It has been lost for many years but most, if not all of the Life Wants were accomplished. A target had to be defined for me so my goals would never be forgotten until they were reached.
Paul D. Scott