This morning I re-read this post and thread, wrote a comment and realised I had more to say. This is cross-posted from my blog.
I probably qualify to be labeled a ‘bleeding heart’, whatever that is. Among some of the labels I can apply to myself, one of them is that I am a mother of two children.
From my earliest conscious years as an adult, I have also considered every single child on this planet to be ‘mine’ so I also speak from that perspective..
I don’t get how a 12-year old boy, any 12-year old boy, can be tried by adults as an adult.
If this is another example of the best solution we can collectively come up with to deal with our children who go down an extremely wrong road, who are child killers, then we have not reached very far as a civilisation. If this world is organised logically, then I happily renounce being logical.
We live on a planet of wealth, advanced technology, super ‘reasoning’ skills and ‘wonderful’ systems to manage our collective life, including war. Yet we don’t get that every single child that currently draws breath is a blank slate upon which surface our collective consciousness will be reflected.
If we have children who kill people it’s because our world is organised in such a way that there are benefits gained when people are killed. Do not expect children to act differently from adults that cohabit their same planet.
Do not expect children to not act out the denied hatred, rage, loathing and healthy indifference that underlies much of how we have chosen to organise life on our planet. Adults may mask all of this well. Children do not.
Murder is a ‘pre-meditated act done with the specific intent to take a human life’. Whatever factors we choose to bring to bear when pondering this incident, ‘our’ child took the life of two persons and burnt their house down.
Look around our wonderful planet. Lives are being taken every day for many ‘logical’ reasons. That’s ‘real’. What is also ‘real’ is that life is wonderful for only a handful.
There were many factors that summed together to create that awful day when a 12-year old boy, Christopher Pittman, killed his grandparents and when those other children opened guns on their own loved ones, peers and/or strangers.
Just as building more prisons has proven irrelevant to stemming crime, incarcerating children who kill for adult terms does not stop other and increasingly more children from murdering.
There are many factors that add up to a planet where billions live in poverty when there is enough wealth to go around to at the minimum, feed, clothe, shelter and provide good health care and some money to every single human being alive.
Fix those factors. No, transform them. All of them. Then we can pick up this conversation about children once again.
I’m a ‘bleeding heart’ who feels the pain of the majority of human beings. Call me a liberal, a libertarian or worse, a leftist. Whatever label you feel fits from your perspective.
If what I write and express here from my heart needs to be dismissed, go ahead, dismiss all of this. The labeling technique has worked historically to shut people up by whatever means necessary who dare to take a stand for ‘we must create a better way’.
Other than labeling and those other ‘old’ forms of reaction, there is another way to proceed. It begins with understanding that the ‘what’s missing’ in the world’s equation is ‘heart’.
The expression of more heart on our planet will do the trick. But the expression of and the creation of heart-based ‘systems’ that reflect more heart requires more compassion, more empathy, more walking in those ‘other’ persons’ shoes.
There are enough alternate ideas about organising our world’s resources out there to take constructive and practical, results-oriented conversations further. The ‘logical’ who care to add enough measures of heart to understand the importance of making life work for all and the ‘bleeding hearts’ who care enough about manifesting a ‘new’ way to risk being shut up and shut down repeatedly rather than be silent can choose to work together.
Motivation for creating this partnership will either come from inner growth of all involved leading to changed outer attitudes, conversations and actions or from outer triggers that force our hands because the band aid approach becomes patently obsolete to enough of us.
How can we, each one of us, proceed in our lives each day so that we feel and are more compassionate, more empathic towards others who do not live their lives in the same way that we do? How can we ‘be’ more compassion and practical love today?
Before every last bit of my body is burnt in the furnace, if not at the stake like all those other times, I breathe for the day when heart blooms fully enough to create logic that works for all.