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What Kind of World

November 25, 2014

JakeLingLingSelinaAs Thanksgiving draws near, it’s natural to think of those things, situations and people we’re thankful for. I recently read “It’s a God Thing” and the incredible stories are inspiring. When there’s good things it’s easy to be hopeful – when it’s bad things, faith is needed. Today embraces a beginning and an aftermath.

The beginning – a new family member:

Well whoever had money on a girl, 7 lbs 10 oz and 19 1/2 in, wins the contest!!! But really we are the true winners with our newest addition, Selina Lee!!!

Nephew Jake and his lovely wife Ling Ling welcomed Selina Lee to the world this morning. She was eager to make an appearance before Thanksgiving and push shopping to a side issue.

NatalieDuBoseThe aftermath is much different just a few hours south of there. As Small Business Saturday approaches and the holiday season gets underway, some business owners were wiped out last night. Looting, burning, vandalism for something they did not do and in no way had a part of. Miss Natalie owned Natalie’s Cakes & More. Owned because protesters burned it down last night.

So here’s someone who has worked hard, and a Facebook page showing beautiful work, with feedback testifying they taste as good as they look. Already ‘fundraisers’ have come forth that she did not set up, but is working to. Those who have seen our struggle to get enough to pay bills, pay for new projects and better our lives I hope will be touched enough to follow her Facebook page and do something to help her rebuild as it sinks in what she needs that helps her. Not just what we want to do – but allowing her a shred of power to name it and respond. Sometimes we try to help and it’s not helping. She’s a visible face but not the only business destroyed.

The problems ripple far beyond one community.

I have 3 boys. You can be a straight A student, never had a discipline referral, never had behavioral issues, never committed a crime and can still be shot dead by your fellow black man or a cop.

So as many try to understand, it seems to fall short. Even those trying to communicate get frustrated – the gap between the worlds of understanding, then, seems one of the first things needed. Not fires, riots, looting. Communication. Being adults and using words to truly make a change.

This is the world that Connor and Selina will inherit folks. It’s the world that my friend’s three boys will be in and we have got to have a platform where all can have a positive part in it. While her boys and Selina are too young to understand, Connor is watching, reading, formulating thoughts and responses and ideas that will guide his actions throughout life. He is reading responses from both black and white friends on my wall and, like many, trying to wrap his head around where to go from here?

What will we give them? Will it be a path of fear or one in that they are free to follow their dreams of a beOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAtter life? Can they all live and work to the benefit of all? Will they be pondering these same things 30-40 years from now or will what we do NOW give them the freedom to spend time pursuing that which makes them happy?

We can debate criminal records, illegal activities, negativity for decades. We have. It seems the more we talk that the more negativity we have. How about if we find common ground, if we find positive, if we find successful and those who, given a chance, can be successful? It’s the holidays and this gift is priceless. It’s far beyond the things looters are stealing and shoppers are fighting for. Reality check folks. Those things end up in trash.

Let’s not let the lives of the next generation be cast aside too. I think they all matter. Americans better find a way because whatever we do, it will be handed to them. That can be equality or resented distrust, a future or a debt they can never get out of.

Will it be easy? No. But common ground says that as parents it’s critical to do something positive. Let’s get beyond us and find a world to hand to them. It’s that important.

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