Have you ever wondered exactly what is up with “birthers,” “deathers,” and “tenther” types?
Yes, the wrong spelling but with malice aforethought. While there are many rites of passage in many societies, all designed to signal the passage from childhood to adulthood, most are symbolic gestures to remind the participant it is time to put away the toys and move on to become a responsible, productive member of society. This generally includes such things as
accepting responsibilities, performing actions that are not just for personal gratification and realizing the individual is not the center of the universe. But there is more to it. It is one of trick questions that inevitably bite one in the keister. One has the right of passage, you can grow up and stop being a self-centered, spoiled child except with that right also comes the duty of growing up.
This is where the US is having some serious difficulties. Most of the rest of the industrialized world has realized that cooperation and respect for others is the only way people can live together and flourish as a society. And it is working pretty well for them. Sadly, the US is still held in the thrall of a group of dangerous children. Children, in that they retain the juvenile idea that the world revolves around them and that they have every right to having their every wish granted and immediately. They have their little clique, their in crowd, and the rest of society exists just to serve their pleasure. Our society has been slowly permeated with their beliefs, twisting the basic generosity of spirit and humanitarian ideals our country was founded on and which had served us very well for two hundred years until the idea of individual rights has become the mantra of the greedy and the frightened.
This isn’t surprising. Children live with many more fears than adults because they lack the experience that enables them to deal with scary things. The deregulated capitalistic types live in constant terror. The idea that the accrual of money and power saves them only demonstrates their fear. It is obsessive/compulsive behavior; something most would call a mental illness. Since they can buy approval, they have foisted it off on the American public as a good thing, a goal to reach. They don’t understand the adult concepts of compassion and responsibility to anything beyond their own self so they push their propaganda that these things are weakness. They are like the Lost Boys and Peter Pan, caught in their fantasy only they have found they can pass their fears and childishness to others.
It is time for America to grow up. It is time for us to realize this isn’t a kid game. Just as the young couple who, in their youthful passion, make a new life, we are at a crossroads. We can stay irresponsible children, ignore the magnitude of what we face and abandon our responsibility for our actions or we can stand up and do the right thing. For too long the ‘love child’ has suffered because the parents were too frightened to do what was needed. It is time to put down the Ipods and jet skis, time to quit hiding behind the juvenile idea that a society can exist without the participation of every member who is capable. And that it is up to those who can to help those who can’t find some way to add what they can.
There is no mention in the Constitution of the Right of Passage because it didn’t have to be there. That one is too basic and one that is too personal. Society either grows or it stagnates and dies. We get to choose.