Friday, July 5, 2013

Ever Vigilant

Pilots have a large checklist of things they must do before take off.  It is written down and gone over one by one and checked off to make sure nothing ges wrong.  It is too important to trust to memory so they entrust it to pen and paper even though many can recite it.  Unfortunately, often in life we must rely on habit and memory.

You must be ever vigilant in your actions.  For certain the moment you relax your standards, forget to do something, it will come back to bite you in the butt.  We live in a world you have to lock your doors every time you get out of the car, no matter how good you think your neighborhood is.  We live in the world where you must put on the house alarm even if you are just running to the local store.  We live in a world where walking in the wrong kind of neighborhood can get you hurt or worse.  It really is a shame that the onus is on each individual to protect themselves from wrongdoers rather than the responsibility lying with each and everybody to try not to do wrong.  But that seems to be the way things have become.  In the absence of the criminal, the victim receives the blame for making themselves an easy mark.  We yell and point fingers at people for leaving something in their car with unlocked doors, as happened recently with a coworker and her stolen iPad.  Just because the victim added to the temptation or made it easy, doesn't take blame away from the real culprit.  "They just made it too easy to..." is the poorest excuse for doing wrong that I have ever heard.

So be ever vigilant in your actions to protect you and those you love.  Then go the extra mile and try to teach people to do the right thing.  Teach them through word and example and raise your child or children and your friends and your children's friends, and anyone that you can reach, to rise to a higher standard and to do what is right.  

This upcoming August 28th marks the anniversary of Martin Luther King's most famous "I have a dream" speech.  NPR is asking for people's dreams in preparation.  It may be simple, and certainly not on the level of Dr. King, nor does it tackle great social injustices of our time, but I have a dream.  I have a dream that some day people will once again pride themselves on doing the right thing, no matter how easy it would be to do otherwise.  I have a dream that some day people can once again leave a door unlocked without the world proving their faith in the honesty and integrity of their neighbor was naive and plain wrong.  Some will call this dream nostalgic and saying I am calling for a return to the old days, and perhaps they are right, but even Mayberry had a sheriff.  I just wish everyone could go to bed not having to ask themselves if they locked the door.

Sincerely with love from your dad,

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