Can We Grow Up?

Mercy. This blog has taken a long time.

I started it three times, and each time so far, I didn’t say what I intended to say. Things are still in upheaval since my accident. The kids are trying to take advantage too. When they do their chores, they try shortcuts and, at times, not doing them at all. I guess they think I broke my eyes instead of my back. Of course, when Catherine comes through the house, they jump to everything like privates do when their sergeant peeks into the room. It’s comical as hell and helps keep my blood pressure down.

Right now, the little ones have Legos out and are busy testing their engineering skills. Each one makes something and gives it to another to admire; the receiving kid then proceeds to modify the design and gives it back. There is some argument, but when completed, everyone is happy. It is very much the way staffing works. They are sharing ideas and giving comments in a somewhat calm environment.

When I worked on the Commander’s staff in Korea, we occasionally had plans, budgets, statements, or some such passed around for our input. Usually, they passed benignly through each office, but there were occasional flairs of temper because of short deadlines, perhaps a perceived encroachment on someone’s domain.

I suspect the same thing happens on a larger scale when one observes the political madness and their staff.

That says a lot.

There is so much confusion happening now; it ranges from how did Covid 19 originate to how did our political system morph into a selfish, spiteful, to hell with all of you; I’m doing it my way existence? I’ve heard an oft-used phrase that politics is the art and science of compromise. That is not by any stretch what is out there right now. And I see more and more of the non-compromising attitude beyond the United States too.

Have our cultures changed, or are they opening to show just how much like children we are?

When I was young, my mother said she had four children, but only three of us were boys and no girls. It took me a while to figure out that she included my father as one of the children. I think many women hold a belief that men never grow up. But women still want to play dress-up. They go to great lengths to have other women approve of the way they look.

Have you ever seen a group of older ladies get together for something — cards, social club, or maybe to chat. They get all gussied up, get their hair done (a bit of bluing in their sliver hair), and oh, the perfume. You can smell the room for hours after they leave. Do you think all that is for a man? It is so all the other women can see they did it right. Isn’t that a form of dress-up?  

I was both enlisted and an officer while I served in the Army. As an officer, several times, I heard my commanders say, “Is there an adult down there with the enlisted?” Meaning, an officer was the adult, inferring the enlisted (both men and women) were children.

I would be willing to bet politicians look at their constituents as if we are children. What does that say about the people we elect?

I don’t trust people who think they know what I need more than I do. Let me qualify that. When I pay a professional to advise me on medical matters, I’ll listen to them, but ultimately I make the decision. When I talk to a lawyer to give me advice on a legal matter, I decide what to do. Why would I want someone to tell me what I need to do and how I need to act without my input?

Have you noticed that when lawmakers enact a law, they design the law to make you behave the way they do? Or at the very least the way they want you to. Ever seen, or heard of, a lawmaker wishing to pass a law that restricts them into acting or behaving, not like themselves, but they want a law that makes them act like you?

All governments do this. Well, one form doesn’t, that is what we had in the old west, anarchy, no rules, and I’m pretty sure we don’t want to go back to that.

So, what are we to do? Do we have to resign ourselves to submit to the ones who fashion themselves as the adults and us children? Do we elect others who eventually will become adults? Do it ourselves?

To answer that, I will borrow from Robert A. Heinlein in his novel Starship Troopers, in which he posited there could be no citizenship until that person served the country. Before, I have several people object to this idea, not the least conscientious objectors (those that oppose killing on moral or religious grounds). Let me point out I said to serve the country. I did not say they had to go into the armed forces. A person can assist the country’s greater good by being a first responder EMT, police, or firefighter in addition to the armed services. How about Homeland Security or maybe the FBI? There are all kinds of jobs that don’t involve killing. The key is to demonstrate a willingness to sacrifice for the country before they can be a citizen.

What I don’t think belongs to this class of serving is politicians. I think politicians should be citizens already. That means before you can be elected or appointed to an office, you should have already served your country. Additionally, I think there should be term limits.

If we enacted this system, it might not stop all infighting and bickering like children, but we might garner better representation and find people who will better serve the people. And speaking of children, why to they negotiate with their siblings better than our paid representatives?

It gives one pause to think.

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