Seniors: World Events Help Shape World View

Jul 20th, 2011 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

World events help shape our world view.  While that is so, note the word “help” here.  American presence in the world has long been perceived as a major contributor to progress, peace, prosperity and all the other pluses that help make up this country.  There are other factors that are implicit in our role and contributions to the world.

Presently, however, the role and face of the United States is undergoing stresses unlike those experienced in a very long time.  The Second World War surely was a time of great upheaval, but it also seemed to be a unifying time when Americans were proud to serve and devote themselves to an outcome of justice and freedom.

Fractured seems to describe our present condition.  World shaking events are so persistently prolific that hardly one passes before another erupts.  Some signs, e.g. in the Middle East, portend positive developments.  Democratic forces are emerging to ward off authoritarian regimes.  Persons are melding together in an effort to take control of their own destiny.

The continuation of conflict in some quarters bears careful scrutiny.  How long will we continue our presence, spend our resources, see our military in danger?  When will we release the reins on our desire to influence the outcome?

Within our own boundaries, there are self interests that seem to overlook the health of the whole.  There are movements and messages that seem to divide rather than unite.  With limited insight and experience the American political system seems to be managed more by emotion than reason.  Trust and confidence are diminishing commodities.  Fear seems to be the ruling force.

Franklin Roosevelt’s counsel, “We have nothing to fear but fear itself,” seems to have been forgotten.  Fear is an insidiously deadly presence which turns neighbor against neighbor.

Our world view is in need of re-education.  Our world view is pressed for more light and less heat.  Our world view needs to take into account a global community struggling for the same things: survival, sanity, compassion, trust, respect,honor, loyalty, and intelligence.

Without these qualities we can expect little more than infighting and puerile disagreements. Without these our world view will continue to be influenced by emotion and rage rather than calm and reason.  It is time to assess our world view in the interest of goodness, which Eisenhower reminded us: “America is great because she is good.  If she ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great!”



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