Monday, October 1, 2012

Shame on us!

Ohhhhh, internoodles!  I'm getting up on my soapbox, and I am about to go ballistic, so watch out!

I have a very quiet student who has been keeping pretty much to herself.  About a week ago, she sent me a desperate-sounding email saying she didn't think she was smart enough to get through this class, even though she'd had it years before at another school.  She waxed on that perhaps she hadn't given herself enough time after leaving the Army and active deployment to adjust to civilian life before coming back to school.  Or maybe it was the pressure of having a four year old this time as she went through school that was making everything more difficult.  As a complete aside, near the end of this really stream-of-consciousness, frayed-sounding email, she said she was also under stress.  Because she's homeless.  With a four year old.

Stop and think about that.  Homeless with a four year old. 

She's a veteran of the United States military, served her country on active deployment to a foreign country, and she's homeless with a four year old.  How. does. this. happen?!  It happens because we have reached a point in our country where we don't value people, we value machines, including the big giant machine of politics.  And if your fingers are itching to tell me everything that has been done wrong by our sitting president, save it.  Scratch that itch someplace else, because this is a non-partisan issue.  This is a day-to-day society issue.  The fact that billions are spent on defense, but soldiers and veterans go on welfare or are homeless is disgusting and shameful.  We should all be ashamed of ourselves.  We're letting go of the human factor that is what made this country great.  It's the different types of humans who came here and joined together with ideas and blood, sweat, and tears to create something that had never been done before.  It's imperfect, but it was about humans breaking their backs and brains to make it the best it could be.  That we've forgotten that it all boils down to people helping each other be better people makes me sad.

What made me hopeful again, though, was putting this student's dilemma out onto my social network.  My network is made up of people from all walks of my 44 years of life.  Some are people I see daily, some are people who have stood by me through countless life changes, some I knew well in my youth, but I don't see on a regular basis.  Yet so many took the time to find information, pass along some hint, or even just say a prayer for her.  I cannot believe the outpouring of goodwill I felt simply from those posts.  It saved my hope for humanity.

I'll go to class tomorrow with a list of places this student can go to hopefully get some relief from her situation.  I've still got some righteous anger going on, but now at least there's less of that than there is of hope.

No comments:

Post a Comment