Sunday, June 7, 2009

Outside the Glass Bell Jar

I’ve lived all my life on the right hand side of that bell graph of normalcy, that graph in the Psychology 101 books, where Intelligence is the lower line with 100 or Average in the middle, the other line going up on the left side representing population. It feels, to me (living with the results of that stupid IQ test that was “off the charts” in the early 1960’s), like a glass bell jar that looks much like the graph and I’m on the outside looking in, sometimes banging on the glass, trying to talk with the people inside, and they just can’t hear what I’m saying.
Perhaps that’s why I have so much empathy for the people, trapped outside also, on the other side of the IQ line. Maybe it is why I can connect with them, and they with me. They are on the outside too, banging the glass, trying to get in, trying to be heard. I think both they and I know that we are all people, human beings, and what we want at the most basic level is to be recognized as humans – and to be with all the other humans.
And to be treated as unique individual humans, which we all are, which makes us all very much the same.
Go way back in the History of Our Human Family. We Humans have no claws, no big teeth or other natural weapons, and no shell or feathers or fur for protection. We Humans survived only because We Humans helped each other do so, up against Lions, Tigers and Bears (Oh my!). Our big brains helped us figure out that the only way we could survive in this world and, with the help of our opposable thumbs to carry out the actions we figured out with our imaginations, we somehow got to where we are in the world.
The world that needs us to remember this ancient basic premise of helping one another is still very much needed if we are to survive as a species or face our own extinction by our very own hands.
Yet we keep hearing about “Safe Nuclear Power,” “Clean Coal Technology,” and the need to continue to wage war.
More people have died from radiation poisoning working in places that handle nuclear materials, many more from the ways we store –or dump- the waste products than by any weapon produced.
Mercury released from all the coal that has ever been burned, falls from the sky in the rain, and enters our world’s food chain (much like radiation).
And War is as far away from helping each other survive as you can get.

Greed for money, lust for power, even at the expense of the rest of our Human Family, fuels this fire that needs to be put out.
Lip service just doesn’t cut it - we’ve got to live it.
In “Coram Deo,” in the face of God, as the man we know as Jesus said on the Mountain where he made all those fish sandwiches, speaking about hypocrites.
Those words are just as true today, in so many ways, here in this Christian Nation whose motto is “In God We Trust,” whose biggest export is high-tech weapons…

Tim MacSweeney
Sunday, June 07, 2009

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