Words That Hurt, Words That Heal

Most of us gossip without giving it any thought whatsoever.  Yet, its effects can be so damaging and full of impact.  Our kids face this sort of thing in high school in ways we couldn’t have imagined long ago.  With the advent of instant communications, whether it is instant messaging, tweeting, or immediate photos and videos, the ability to communicate to a wide swatch of people is available to everyone.  I used to think Polaroid cameras were pretty cool.

So, when our kid is captured doing something embarrassing on someone’s phone video, it appears that evening on YouTube.  When a kid chooses to expose him or herself via these sorts of instant means, it is done without any cost or time to even reflect on that decision.  When that’s done, it’s “out there” forever.  I think this all comes with a high cost.  The benefits are good, on occasion, as with the recent election backlash in Iran, where the government couldn’t shut down outside communication due to the existence of these pervasive tech tools. read more

Just A Guy That Misses His Heroes

heroesI’m just a guy that misses his heroes. When I grew up, it was easy to know the good guys from the bad guys.  In some cases they actually wore white hats.  Or, in my first exposure to a movie hero that I remember, it was Steve McQueen as Hilts, the motorcycle-riding, Nazi-defying loner who comes through, in the end, for the guys, in The Great Escape.  He was the epitome of cool.  I thought policemen were also cool and politicians looked like JFK and were to be respected. Nostalgic times, for sure.

But, it changed.  Changed with the sixties, changed with Watergate, changed with Vietnam, and more.  The legacy of those years is what our children now live with.  Who are their heroes?  Do we really want them worshipping all the NBA superstars who are covered with tattoos and whose personal lives are best left for the tabloids?  My sports heroes were like Sandy Koufax who stood by his principles and didn’t pitch a World Series game on a religious holiday of significance to him.  read more