This Thanksgiving, I have been thinking a lot about ‘hows’ and ‘whys’. Why are so many assholes ruling the world? Why are so many greedy bastards running the businesses that employ millions? Why does it feel like a master/slave society? Why does it feel like the United States is going backwards in so many ways and that this world isn’t moving forward?  

The Patriot Act initiated back in the Bush Days, NDAA still in effect under Obama, NSA documents released by whistle blowers disclosing invasive spying on US citizens and others, never ending wars, drones, terrorism (whether it’s foreign or domestic or even the U.S. killing innocent victims with drones or in ‘authorized’ wars), and famine are just a few of many societal tragedies that plague this world of ours. How is it possible that people in this world are still starving to death and don’t have access to safe water? How is it possible that violence is so often the knee jerk reaction on international, national, and individual levels? How are people against equal pay for women? How are people against a livable minimum wage? How are people against helping the poor? Why would anyone want to cut Social Security, Medicaid, and Welfare instead of making improvements? Why are people so callous? Why are people okay with billionaires paying employees what amounts to basically slave wages?  How can people fight against healthcare for all? Why do we allow big business to propagate against global warming and continue to polluting the world at all, much less into the danger zone? Why do we as a nation not stand up for what is right? Why don’t more people care about the rights and wrongs in the world unless they are directly affected? Why don’t we as a society educate ourselves on world events, cultural struggles, religious differences and commonalities? Why don’t we work together to improve the entire world instead of fighting like terribly behaved, unsupervised children?  

Most of the time, I truly don’t understand human nature. I don’t understand how we have not evolved beyond the point of cruelty to one another and destruction of anything we touch. I don’t understand how we dismiss, deny, or don’t even care about the facts. I don’t understand how a social structure of stupid white men as the ruling class (for the most part) came to be. I don’t understand why so many are incapable of seeing anything from anyone else’s perspective. I don’t understand how one person can make millions of dollars for minimal work while another works three times the hours and can’t make ends meet or how the millionaire can feel superior because he got lucky. I don’t understand how one soul is born into riches, while another is born into war torn poverty and starvation or how the wealthy often find a reason that their life is equally tragic compared to someone struggling to survive.

There are times when my heart fills with hope over occurrences around the world. Gay marriage slowly becoming legal across the United States has been a positive sign. Across the globe, seeing a new generation of voices, rising in pockets, that supports better ideas, leadership, peace, and fairness has made me believe in a better tomorrow. Listening to individuals like Malala Yousafzai who risked her life to stand up for the education of women in Afghanistan has been inspiring. There are moments when I think that things will get better and people actually care, but there is always doubt to whether enough people care to make the changes the world needs, and whether enough people are thinking beyond their own families, personal shopping, and making the big paycheck. I wonder if people can comprehend or even think about the fact that everyone wants safety for themselves and their families. Everyone wants a good life with proper shelter, food and clean water. Everyone wants basic healthcare and everyone deserves these basic needs met, in the U.S. and all around the world.  

On this Thanksgiving, I am thankful for my family, the overall good health of those close to me, and the never-ending hope that the world will eventually wake up, replace the hurting with caring for one another, and will stop the destruction to the environment.  Also, I am thankful for the hope of new generations with new insights, and a renewed fight for what is right to build a stronger world community. We should be more evolved at this point in our collective history than evidenced by the actions we display, but at least there are signs of a better future. I am thankful for that.

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