“The world is on fire.” “Its us versus them.” “You have to pick a side.” I cannot count the number of times I have heard these statements. No, not from my Gods. Not from any of the Gods. I hear this from people, everywhere.
Before I get started too far into all of this, let me preface all of this with one particular thing about me. I do not like being told what to do. This probably comes from the Roman Catholic schooling that my Protestant parents sent me into – and is most likely my rebellion button being pushed several thousand times over. This has been a strong part of my life since the typical rebellious teen-aged years. Some folks would say that its a part of me that has yet to grow up. However, I would say that this has led me down another Path – looking before I leap.
Now, I get it, people are suffering because of a variety of reasons. Some of those reasons can be changed – others, not so much. So the focus is to find the places where changes can be made, and to put into effect actions to make those changes. As a singular notation, there is the runaway cost of prescription medications here in the United States. Now, as an aside, I am a diabetic. I pay A LOT to get the medications that I get – even at discount prices. I am definitely in the crowd wanting lower medication prices, so I don’t have to spend what amounts to the price of a yearly house payment on medications that I need to stay alive. However, I am skeptical about getting my national government into the realm of price-fixing and regulation. I have seen measures like these abused in other industries in the country. BUT. I am willing to look at things and eventually make up my mind. Not be told how I should feel about things like this, and then be considered a “traitor to the Cause” for trying to figure out where I actually stand on an issue.
“The Cause.” I have already had enough of this “Us v Them” concept. Or if you prefer Democrats versus Republicans. Or Progressives versus Traditionalists. Or whatever notation or labeling you want to attach to it. My own personal perspective on Druidry holds that all people are the same, regardless of creed or belief or politics. But while I do not try to draw distinctions between people, I do have to realize that everyone is not going to think or believe the same – even in my perspective that everyone deserves the same respect regardless of creed or political affiliation. So, where do I sit on this concept of “The Cause” or if you prefer, the approaching war between two differing perspectives? Well, the real answer is that I don’t.
In the recent movie, ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald”, the primary character Newt Scamander is being berated by his brother to pick a side.
Theseus Scamander: The time’s coming when you’re gonna have to pick a side.
Newt Scamander: No, I don’t do sides.
I am very much like Newt in this respect. I do not look for a side to pick. I try to see things from every potential angle that I can. Utilizing politics here in America: Democrats love this country, as do Republicans, as do others of third-party and non-affiliated perspectives. They differ on how the country should be governed. Through their philosophies and theories of governance, each perspective has created an intolerance of the other perspective – essentially losing sight of the true measure of what should be – the Constitution that provides the framework under which governance takes place. Both Democrats and Republicans pay a higher allegiance to their political perspective than they do to their country, at least from where I sit in this raucous circus. I choose not to do sides because both perspectives have lost sight of the Constitution in favor of the controlling power that is given to their respective political parties when majorities are managed by each within the elected branches of government.
So, is the world in chaos? Yes it is. Are there aspects of crisis that need to be dealt with? Yes, by our general society as a whole. Are we being forced to pick a side? Not really. What we are being forced to do is to determine what is morally correct and what is not. Politics has nothing to do with that. Our own humanity does. Our own moral compasses do. Our own measures of our personal aspects of Spirituality do. If deciding that all human beings should have respect, recognition, the offers of kindness and hospitality is choosing a side….then yes, I choose a side. These are what I consider basic necessities of being a human being. When you can provide help, you provide it. If you need help, you should not have to perform a political questionnaire to determine if you should accept the assistance. Likewise, if you are providing assistance. People that need help, should be able to get help. No judgment, no checking credentials. Just give help. Its the most basic of things…