Are we doing the best that we can?
My idea for this post was to write about Brené Brown and how I am currently listening to Rising Strong and how one of many things that resonated with me was her talking to her therapist about whether people really just do the best they can. When I first listened to it I thought yes that is something I believe. I believe people are flawed and most of us do the best that we can most days. Then the most recent school shooting happened. I began to question my belief. Because I am seeing legislators accept enormous amounts of money from the NRA and then say nothing can be done about school shootings. I see people post nasty comments and memes about those kids that are organizing a #neveragain campaign because they feel like adults have failed them. So I wonder if those people are really doing the best that they can. I am really not sure.
When things like this happen I like many people feel like it is easy to get pulled into a spiral of anger. I think that is because we feel helpless and sad. What can we do as individuals to make a difference here? The media we choose to consume factors into this. Social media, in particular, can really get me riled up as I know it does for many people. So what to do? Today I went back to a quote I have used here before.
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” Fred Rogers
For me, in this instance, the helpers look different. They look like angry and grieving high school students. And they are loud and they are active and they are doing things. I find them inspiring. I read an article about them today where they were in different living rooms making calls, setting up interviews, and arranging marches and a legislative visit. At the same time, they were still kids taking selfies and eating junk food. They are so authentic in what they are doing and as young people, no one can tell them no this can’t happen and because of that maybe they will succeed at something many before them have failed at.
And so I will continue to want to believe people do the best that they can even as I struggle with that idea. I will also keep looking for those that take a tragedy and try and make a difference in whatever way that they can. For I find them to be heroes as they push the line of what the best they can do is.