Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Oh, the Irony....

Today's complaint about the world around us addresses...complaints about the world around us.

Does it seem ironic to you that I'm complaining about the complainers on a blog that exists specifically as a forum for posts like It's Just Too Damned Easy to Get Married in this Country, Rape Trials and Other Horrific Abominations, and the ever-popular Corporate America Doesn't Care if You Die? If so, you're in good company. If, that is, you consider me good company.

The thing is, I've lately found myself troubled by the themes running through a lot of conversations and online discussions. I was first bothered by a Catholic discussion group where I began to notice that there wasn't much talk about Catholicism at all, but instead a lot of talk about the dangers and/or evils of evangelicals. And then I happened across a couple of threads in another discussion forum--one about as different from the first as you could imagine in terms of both participants and subject matter--that were all about "why do people insist one...?" and "doesn't it bug you when...?"

And suddenly, it bugged me when people sat around and talked about what everyone else could be doing better. I don't usually wax religious on this blog--I have a Catholic blog for that--but I have a little verse about removing the plank in your own eye bouncing around in my head right now.

Am I talking about this in the wrong place? Well, maybe. But the thing is, it's not just about how we all have our flaws and none of us are in a position to judge. It's not just about how critiquing other people is in itself an activity worth of criticism. It's the futility of it all. In every moment, we can sit and bitch or we can act. And sure, there's a lot to complain about in the world, but every moment that we're sitting around complaining and commiserating and wondering why other people always (fill in your own pet peeve here) is a moment we haven't used to make something better somewhere.

My daughter and I learned in church on Sunday that you can build a house for a homeless family in the third world for $2600. Think about that. Take a family that is living in the streets and give it a home for $2600.

Do you have $2600 on hand to send off to Food for the Poor? Well, I don't either. And I don't have a heck of a lot of time on my hands to come up with it, either. But I do think that if I find a free hour here or there, it might better be used thinking up some creative ways to raise $2600 and implementing them than sitting around talking about why everyone isn't doing it.


Peter said...

Off topic a bit, but anyway. My complaint - It really gets under my goat, when (some or at times alot) young people (older people too) are all too ready to show disrespect to teachers, people in authority and complain about the smallest of things.

Perhaps I'm getting too old and impatient. Perhaps they live more for today than tomorrow.

But it does not take much to be, "just a nice person", does it?

Moi said...

Two subjects to comment about.

Firstly, I definitely agree with Peter: I work in a school (primary teaching, children between 3 and 12 years old) and know how hard it is to earn their respect ; moreover when their parents publicly disagree with you and disrespect you.

Good education seems to be a thing of the past...

Secondly, I live in a little country (which is currently ridiculous because it has no government since four months: I talk about Belgium) but where several organizations help underdeveloped or in the process of development countries.

Many of our young people (and less young people) leave on mission in these countries, building houses, schools, teaching agriculture, etc.

These organizations receive the money of our citizens, helped by the television and radio programs or campaigns or by the schools: children have a number of stickers, greeting cards or other small objects to be sold to their family or their neighbors.

We also have organizations which fight against the hunger and are at certain times, in our food stores: you buy food for you and a little bit more that you will you give the persons who wait at the store's exit.

The food products will be conveyed in these foreign countries by plane.

But I suppose that this kind of organizations also exist in your country and that your desire would be to make more than what is already done.

PS. Please forgive my bad English :)

Ms. Scorpia said...

I have to say that this post is the best read so far! It makes me boil inside when people discuss for hours about what people are doing and why can't they be better at that! I mean seriously, focus on you and what you can contribute to the sometimes hellish world. It doesn't stop revolving, because you're critical of others. Thanks for the info about the home that can be built for only $2600. Hmmm, so that means that Donald Trump could build a whole community in a third world country.

Elle Bee said...

People, especially in America, want to justify why bad things happen to people... They must deserve it right?


The sense of entitlement we have amongst us is sickening.

It's easier for people to feel as if their owed their cushy life than to realize that life isn't fair, and compassion is necessary.

here i am said...

I cannot agree with you more. The problem with us is that we think that wishing is enough to change things or may be just cribbing will help.


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