Losing the Value of Life

Today I want to write about a phenomenon I’ve been noticing for years, but, somehow, it was just this week I began to draw connections as to why.

First, I want to illustrate what I’m thinking of:

In simple words, this phenomena is “a loss in the value of human life.”

I think, in general, in this country, maybe in this whole world, we humans have lost a sense of value for our own and other’s lives.

I mean, that we no longer feel life is beautiful, worthwhile, or important.

The most prominent examples of this would be, as always, in the media world.

 

Have you noticed yet how many movies (and anime, the other biggest genre in this country), spend a sizable chunk of their time trying to convince the audience that humans are worth saving.

Since I was a kid, I noticed the anti-human rederick in sci-fi cinema.

I bet if I asked you (assuming you’re in an English spelunking country) to name 5 movies off the top of your head where some bad guy from another race, or another planet, says humans are basically petty, garbage that they really don’t see any value in, to which the hero retorts with something brilliant like “Well, I say they are.” And then beats the crap out of the villain, who is still unconvinced… you could do it right. 

Watch me I’ll do it now:

Wonder Woman ( Ares vs Diana)

Captain America (Red Skull vs Cap)

Justice League Animated movie: Crisis on Two Earths (Owlman vs Batman)

Avengers Age of Ultron (Ultron versus the Avengers)

The Matrix (Agent Smith versus Neo, pick a movie for that one, all three do it).

 

There’s more, but that’s just 4 popular, and one more obscure example.

I’d say this rend must have started in the 60-70s, but took off more in the 80s-90s, and is now a staple of pretty much every superhero movie we have.

And Anime has it in almost every arc, if it’s a shonen anime. 

Makes me wonder what humans ever did to all the machines and aliens, it’s rarely other humans who are making this judgment call.

I mean, why do screenwriters feel so implicitly that other races would loathe and despise us on such short acquaintance?

Usually, i’ts because we’re “destroying our planet.” And agenda that is only held by some members of our population. Try pitching that idea in an African tribe sometime, they’ll give you blank looks. Those of us “destroying” our eco system, are usually the ones reaping the most benefits from doing so. Maybe we are in the West, but, that’s not a global reality.

And because we’re cruel, petty, and afraid. 

Like, usually the aliens in question, and AI things, are not any less cruel or petty than we are. But they look down on humans like some self righteous snobs.

And then we get the protagonist speech. Like “I”m going to save humanity anyway, because… reasons.”

Like, the hero really can’t disagree with it.

Ever notice how tired our modern day heroes are?

You’d nee see that in the 50s-60s, heroes reveled in being heroes the way ballerinas revel in ballet, and artists revel in painting, and actors revel in acting. There was not this weariness to them.

Even Spiderman, perhaps the most iconically troubled superhero of the last century, spent most of this time enjoying his job. He thought it was important.

In my mind, it’s a disgrace to our culture that we can have a movie where Superman spends most of his time wondering why he’s even bothering to save humans. (Dawn of Justice.)

Like, heroes used to not take humanity as a whole and say “you all suck, so why should I save anyone.”

It was about saving the ordinary, decent people who need help, and sometimes, the not so decent people, because they were still people.

 

I’m not here to talk just about superhero cinema. But it’s one place you can almost always find this. Even my favorites from the last 10 years, that’s true. Some of the older movies, it’s not there in.

I now some of you are gong to be thinking “But humans do suck. They’re just telling the truth.”

That’s what my Dad would say, I know. I can still hear his voice in my head even after nearly two years of absence.

I have to admit, my dad is one of the main reasons I’m tempted to be down on humanity myself.

Though, I question what the point of having aliens and machines criticize us in our movies is, when, those things are not real, at least not yet, and really have no place judging us.

Shessh.

I mean, what are we going or replace humans with? We are what we got to work with. What’s the use of having alien critics? Thanks for the social commentary, Hollywood… the people who actually promote a sinful lifestyle so much you’re directly responsible for the increase in a lot for the very things you’re calling us out for.

Yeah, sure, it’s all the general populations fault.

Like, was it the 90s kids fault that the examples we subjected them too were so sacred up that they now have very little idea of how to behave? Or did we remove their chance to know what right really was?

But I digress.

Another place you can find this attitude is in pretty much every leftist work out there. I’m sorry if that’s offensive, it’s just something I’ve observed. Their books, movies, talks hows, always bashing on how bad humans are, and how we’ve ruined everything.

The level of disgust I’ve noticed since a kid with humans.

Why it’s int he flipping Percy Jackson and the Olympians book series, come to think of it. Maybe that’s where I encountered it first, even.

Whihc is liberal, byt he way.

Humans… we just cant’ cathc ab reak.

I guess it makes snes, we projet abetter personana onto ficiaotna l things, giving them what we wich we had more of as a race. Wsidoem, jsutice, Mercy, Intellignce., Bravery.

But often, what we create is so cold, and bitter, and disillusioned with anthhign in life that might give it pleasure.

Then we wonder why peopel are so depresed these days. Thsi is what they grow up having funneled into their brians bye ey balviale media outlet.

The hatred for humanity.

So, of course, our vlaue for human life drops.

Someitmes, I almsot feel gald when humans die in movies. And then I Catch myself feeling that way, and I think “Am I atually gald? am I actually happy?”

But, I’m an emopath, I pck up on the meotoians and intentons of people. I feel them like they ar emy own until I learn to distuirgns between what they are bradcasting and what I am actuallyt hinking.

IT’s aeasy for me to assume what I get form toehrs is just how things are.

But,I don’t actually like it when peopel die.

Coud it just be, that, when I watch the movie, I catch what they pople writign it were really feeling? What the characrtes are meant to emobidy.

OF course it woudn’t be accpetalbe to make our hero actually asupport gneoicde…but, if you give the vaillinst herse really convicng speeches bout how much humasn desre death or contol, and give the hro nkothing but burte strenght to anwer it with, aren’t you sbulimally letting the vilalin viepoitn win out? IT was never defeated, just silnced.

Why are peopel sypamthaizign with villains so much now?

And anien is even worse int his area than WEster Cinema. At least we give lip service to our ideals wevn eh we give nothing to back it up, but naime often falis to eve do that. The heors jsut save th day becaue they have a stonrg passion for thier firends.

It’s to the point where people have acknowledged that saving the world doesn’t feel like important stakes anymore

Saving the flipping world! Not important!

We can’t get invested int that, because, to us, the world just means the greed and selfishness driven masses that we are shown on tv. Not the individuals whose lives we might actually care about. We can get invested int hose, but not the rest.

That’s why superheroes always save their love interest, you care about that, you don’t care about a crowd of people, do you?

I remember that back in the day, in Westerns, just doing justice was enough, it didn’t have to be to save anyone. You cared because it was justice. It didn’t need a face. The hero wanting it was face enough.

But what hit me this week about the trend I’ve noticed for years and years, is why.

Why do we all feel humans are just the worse, and that human life is no longer valuable.

My theory is, it’s a deep psychological side effect of the choice we’ve made as culture since the 60s.

Let’s start with the biggest two:

Since the 60s we’ve taken parer out of schools, and tried to shut religions out of education, despite much evidenced to the contrary that it’s even a good idea to do so, and so education became more secular.

Depression rates soared after that, by the way. So did teen pregnancies. So did abortions.

Another change made around that time. Abortion became legal.

And now they say we abort 5,000 babies every minute, if I remember right, that may be an old statistic.

This even become legal is, frankly, and atrocity of the highest degree. We have the evidence now to know we are killing a baby, but we’re still doing it and the left will keep saying it’s a Women’s Right’s issue until that excuse stops working.

‘Cause we all know, Women make babies by themselves, and men nave nothing to do with it, so why should the man get a say in it if his baby is killed. (And while some jacks do pressure women to get abortions, many men have not wanted that choice and have been ignored.)

I’m tired of tiptoeing around this, if someone can’t see abortion is wrong, they are more delusional than a man who believes he’s a dog, and there’s just no use apologizing for that anymore.

I hate, by the way, how that issue is barely even talked about now. I heard almost nothing about it at the last elections. It’s not even at the top of our priorities list. We spend more time arguing about the rights of people who enter this country illegally than we do about unborn babies.

But how did abortion become legal? How did this happen? How did we get to this point? Is it not because we began devaluing human life?

I mean, at first, it didn’t work that way. They convinced us the fetus wasn’t human. But, now that we know it is, we’re still not worked up about it.

We just don’t really care, do we?

Even Pro Life people, have hard time getting as emotional over it as we used to, and we’re told not to.

We’re told not to get emotional about a baby being murdered. Like, that’s not something that deserves some emotion….Wow….

We’ve lost our minds, that’s for sure.

But we’ve also lost our value for life.

I almost wonder if it’s a judgement in some sense. Not that God made us do it, but more like karma. Like, we killed our own children in their country, so now our sense of value in even our own lives is dying away.

You ever notice once you start treating someone a certain way, you began to feel that way. And what you do to one person, you’ll do to another. A person who bullies one person will probably bullied another. A person who rapes one person will probably rape another.

A person who lies to you will lie to someone else, and likely to themselves too.

Cross one line with one person, you’ll cross it with all.

Maybe that’s why James said “For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.” (James 2:10)

Because that’s the truth. There is not “one time Sin”. There is only a sin that you do in one form at one time, and maybe don’t do it again, bu you’ll do something similar.

Of course if you repent that maybe not happen, but most people dont’ repent of that, they just think it’s not important anymore, it’s in the past right?

In the rape case, it’s doubtful that a rapist usually ever realizes what they did was wrong. If you can dehumanize a woman or man enough to take that from them, how can you go back? It wouldn’t be easy.

Interesting how signs of violation are sometime harder to let go of that sins like murder and violence.

I mean, many a person has murdered and then been horrified that they did it, and not enjoyed it. But how many people realize even as soon as they’ve done it that rape or molestation was an evil they should never have done. It’s like they block it out.

As the signs get worse and we become more immune to them, we come to care less and less if people die.

Thank to the news most to us feel people are dying all the time, all day long and we can do nothing about it.

Maybe our goal is to try to numb ourselves to the horror by watching horror. Watching gory stuff, and dulling the pain of feeling helpless by doing that. There’s reasons people consider horror a kind of escapism.

But Horror movies and shows and stories are not really an escape, because so many of them can occur in real life, and we’re only increasing the likelihood of it by popularizing it.

You know, I wouldn’t know how to shoot up a drug if I didn’t watch movies. I’ve never done it, and I never intend to, but I know at least theoretically how it works, I’ve seen it. Why are we so stupid?

We are still responsible for our own choice, it’s true, but, we really can’t keep denying that choosing to consume this stuff is changing how we feel about things..

C. S. Lewis thought that being taught how to feel was one of the most important parts of learning. He explains this in The Abolition of Man.

We live in a culture that is post Abolition of Man. We are trying to abolish gender, human rights for anyone we deem a problem (like babies), and any sense of guilt or shame over hurting each other over petty issues.

Do people feel guilty for rioting and becoming violent over the last year? Or are they proud of it?

Should we be proud that people died or got hurt over something that, bad as it was, didn’t have to affect that many people that way.

And of course, someone will say “Well, it should have. All these issues should affect all of us, all the time.”

I miss the days when people thought not everyone needed to be burdened with everyone else’s problems.

I mean, what are we all supposed to do about it?

It’s all just anger, that’s all it is. We can get angry, then what? Did it make us kinder? Smarter? Better people?

Or did we sell our integrity just a little bit more in order to make a statement.

Man, I think the media must just love how easily manipulated we are. It keeps them in business.

And valuing human life is just not even poplar anymore.

Almost everyone is struggling with depression now. I don’t think it’s just because we feel we have no right to live. I think we are wondering if anyone does.

I know that was a big part of my depression, and still is, when it comes back. I can’t find any pat of humanity I like when I think of what I’m shown all day long, every day, by media.

If I can’t value human life, I can’t value my life.

I want to value both.

It’s heartbreaking that we don’t.

According to the Word, God loved the world so much, He gave His Son for it. (John 3:16)

Jesus loved us so much, He died for us.

And what has humanity ever done form God?

Yet he loves us.

Do we understand that?

Many people express the doubt that God could really love such a messed up race as ours.

Well, we don’t deserve it.

But since when was Love based on desert?

You can’t find that idea anymore in the world. Once upon a time, we could. Frozen is the last movie I can think of, and Wonder Woman, that even broached the subject.

Why do our lives have value?

Because, God made us. Why he did, why he puts us here, when it’s such a mess, is hard to say, for us humans. But God knows best. Humans are the only tool he has ever used to mend the world with other than himself.

The Bible says we are partners with God in his Works. That is why we are still here.

I wonder, if we made more stories around that idea, if people would start to feel differently about it.

It’s not so hard.

I can get down in the dumps when I realize all this crap is going on, and that the barbarians of our world are the ones running things.

But, the world is temporary.

People are not.

I think that, turning back from this point of despair, is actually not as difficult as we think.

People who complain about their mental health usually are taking no steps at all to improve it beyond therapy and medication.

But what I found to be much more helpful was changing my influences.

I put some happier examples before me. I went back to books I loved.

I give this advice to other people now.

We need to rediscover what makes people worthwhile.

It’s hard with the constant influx of negativity.

We all talk bout it, but very few of us try to shut it out. I think we need space to just, think. Get in touch with Nature, with Beauty. With Goodness.

If we all did that, the media would have very little sway over us. I think they want us afraid to go outside.

You know, at least right now, people have as much power over you as you give them, provided you’re in a normal position.

I try to explain to my cousin how we don’t all need to think the same way as what’s in vogue.

Wokeness is just… ugh…

It’s come to a pretty pass when the people villainized in their country are ones defending the lives of babies.

Yeah, just stop and think about that sentence.

I mean, shoot, even if you think women have a right to abortion…why on earth would you hate someone for defending a baby? Isn’t that psychotic?

And the self satisfied attitude of the people…

But do we value each other anymore?

If we ever did. My knowledge of history makes me question if any but a predominantly Christian society has ever had anything like a real value for human life. We take it for granted here, we don’t realize how quickly it’s slipping away.

Or if we do, we don’t know how to stop it.

It’s hard, it should be intrinsic, not something we have to learn.

I’m still working on it myself, but I do believe that Beauty and Goodness are the best places to start.

As Paul wrote “whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. (Philippians 4:8)

We really don’t do that anymore, do we. And so we’ve lost our value for all the things that are valuable.

But, be enoucred, friends. Even if our culture is dying, Jesus is not going to die He’s beent ere done that. God is not goidn anywehre.

All Nations fall, and all peoples corrupt, but God is incorruptible. He will stay the same.

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)

In a world where nothign huamn is cerating excpet sin, peopel turn to God as a certianty.

We must hang onto that if we’re gong to not lose heart, it’s so easy to do that.

David wrote;

I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.

 Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!
” (Psalms 27: 13-14)

Notice, he says the “goodness of the lord” not man.

I’ve been thinking of that, because this year, I really want to see the goodness of the Lord…but I think, I keep looking for the goodness of man. And that’s hit and miss.

I’ll leave you with that, until next time, stay honest–Natasha.

The Shocking Truth! (most controversial post about history)

Hmm, I just found out something pretty shocking…

You know how I’m taking a history class right now?

Well, this anti-European history class covered slavery in America last month, and no mention was made of this very strange fact:

(I mentioned it to my professor who denied any knowledge of it. But I remembered it being in a movie that came out 5 or 6 years ago I think, about America.)

Did you know that there were black slave owners in the U. S.?

It’s true. It’s documented on census’es taken from the 1800s, in fact, a black man was one of the first people to legally win ownership of another black man in court

“It depends on how you parse the timeline. Anthony Johnson, the black ex–indentured servant whose bio opened the first episode of our podcast, did sue to hold John Casor for life in 1653, and the resulting civil court decision remanding Casor to Johnson’s ownership was (as historian R. Halliburton Jr. writes) “one of the first known legal sanctions of slavery” in the colonies.” (Slavery Myths, click link for full article https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2015/09/slavery-myths-seven-lies-half-truths-and-irrelevancies-people-trot-out-about-slavery-debunked.html)

There’s a book about it actually, called “Black Slaveowners Free Black Slave Masters in South Carolina, 1790-1860” See link below:

(https://www.worldcat.org/title/black-slaveowners-free-black-slave-masters-in-south-carolina-1790-1860/oclc/1124410642)

So, now you know I’m not making this up, but why am I bringing it up?

Because in a college history class, this is not mentioned. I have never seen it mentioned in any history book I’ve ever read, especially not ones about slavery. They grudgingly mention that slavery existed in Africa, taking great pains to tell us that it was “different from Western Slavery” and “Europeans made it worse” and oh, we had slaves at a time when slavery was a social norm and no one would have thought much of it.

It wasn’t, from the accounts we have of the slaves who came from Africa, the idea of slavery that they objected to, it was the nature of slavery of Europe was different, and they didn’t like it. That’s fair, but is it fair to make it seem like it was mostly the Europeans fault?

Usually, in politics, we blame the preexisting system for the fact that outside forces can take advantage of it. Like, do we blame China for the fact that we outsource our businesses to them because its cheaper that way for us, even though it’s an inefficient system that hurts the people actually making the products?

Is it China’s fault? Or ours, for building our economy on that?

No one is going to say China, here, guys.

Yet, it was somehow Europe’s fault for doing the same thing, when slavery preexisted in Africa and we could only take advantage of it because of that, in Europe, after the Empires died away, slavery was not a thing.

But, they will say, Slavery is a clear evil, and Europeans should have known better.

Well, firstly, slavery is not denounced as evil in almost every major world religion, though it is given parameters, at least in the Bible, for fair treatment, and the ability of slaves to be freed after a certain length of time.

Slavery is a historically acceptable thing, up until the last 200 years, in fact.

So, why should the Europeans have known better? Do human beings innately question things like that? We’re told it’s wrong now from preschool to adulthood, to the point where no one can have an intelligent conversation about why it happened at all, just that it was wrong.

I am no fan of it myself, I live in free country, I like freedom. I am not interested in enslaving anyone.

But I am also not interested in presenting a view of history that is completely skewed one direction, not by logic, not by virtue, but by the wish to inflate the crimes of 1/3 of the world, and ignore the crimes of the other 2/3.

I call it facing facts. The fact is, everyone sucks. No matter what country you’re from, unless its Greenland, because they never do anything that I’ve heard of (but if you go back far enough, who knows? Vikings right?)

Does it not strike anyone else as irresponsible to leave out of history books about the Slavery movement, that black people owned slaves?

I mean, doesn’t it suggest a certain… bias?

Even that one of them maybe was part of normalizing it to begin with?

That’s not something anyone wants to hear, is it?

There’s a lot of white people who get a kick out of shaming their ancestors over slavery, and it’s fair enough to say it was evil… but it’s not fair to say white people are to blame.

The terms “White Supremacist” “White Misogynist” get thrown around a lot.

And if a white person has the audacity to stand up for this country, or any aspect of European history, well, prepare for battle (I should know, I get this in my history class if I ever try to bring up counterpoints.)

Now, I am not blaming black people. (Which is a blanket term anyway, because if I said African, I’d actually exclude a lot of the countries slaves were taken from.) I think all of use are responsible. There were other races involved too. Eastern peoples.

Slavery was a Global problem, it looked different in different nations, but it was Global.

History books now slide a certain way, against White people.

Never mind that Irish, Scottish, and any number of other ethnicity in Europe could be almost as oppressed as slaves, and rarely if ever owned enough property to own slaves. And I am more those ethnicities than I am any that would have had slaves. So, as someone with a very small claim to fame in that part of history, I feel even more annoyed at the marginalization.

Profiling is only profiling if you’re not white.

I wish I was kidding, but I just watched a movie last week, a good movie, that has a couple of lines in it that are just… so, so hypocritical.

The worst is a black woman in the movie makes this joking comment “I never get tired of watching white people fight.”

It’s laughed off, and truthfully, I am not really offended by the idea of it being funny to see white people fight. I think it’s funny too. BUT

Can you imagine the same line, spoken by white person, of a black couple?

Picture it “I never get tired of watching (insert any other race) people fight”

I am pretty sure the Racist Comment Police would be all over this in two minutes.

And this movie is not supposed to be social commentary, it didn’t see any problem with saying that.

Because no one would have a problem with it, on any given TV show, because it’s okay for black people to make fun of white people because we can’t dance, can’t rap, and fight differently  (supposedly) but it’s not okay for white people to say even a good thing about black people, if we say it’s because they are black. At least not without feeling like we’re taking our interracial social life into our hands.

I know some people at my church who don’t care if I say “black” because they know I am not trying to be disrespectful, it’s just easier than trying to remember where they are from. Cause guess what? My church has had black people from the UK there, so I can’t very well just assume everyone is African American, can I? (See why that term is so stupid as a blanket term? It’s more exclusive than black is because it makes it sound like there are only African Americans, and my French Professor was black too, she was form France.)

To be fair, usually it’s other white or Hispanic people who make the jokes that we can’t say “black” no black person has ever told me they don’t like it. (If you don’t, sorry, no offense intended).

Anyway, Political Correctness is dependent upon being technically incorrect, a lot of the time, as I think the above examples illustrate.

If I suggested that black people were partially responsible for slavery on any social media platform, I would get flame warred to death.

Even if, I could historically prove I was right. It wouldn’t matter.

The reason I think I have to talk about this is because my blog is literally about finding truth, protecting the truth, and understanding the value of it.

If the truth doesn’t fit any political agenda, that’s a shame, but it doesn’t make it not true.

Well, I think this is the most controversial post I’ve written all year, I wonder if it’ll get comments.

Though, why it is so bad to just give historical facts and suggest that they should be in history books, I’ll never know. 😐😤

Until next time, stay honest and stay healthy–Natasha

Cutting off the Hand

I’ve been going through my history book’s Imperialism section. Otherwise known as the make-white-people-look-bad section.

Our companion book right now is called “King Leopold’s Ghost” it’s got its own movie, King Leopold is quite famous as it turns out, though I never remember hearing of him before now. People say this part of our history has been hushed up. Now that I’ve read of it, I think maybe it was better that way.

I’m not about suppressing the truth, but for as much good as rehashing it has done us, we might as well not.

Think about it, those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. But do we learn from history?

Or does dwelling on the past lead us to repeat its mistakes?

It’s a sad fact of humanity that we tend to repeat our errors whenever we are most desperate not too.

In our age’s rush to eradicate racism and inequality, we’ve gone to the other end, making more racism and inequality.

Case in point:

In my history class we’ve had two separate discussions of European conquest over black people, some Aborigines and some African.

One week, my classmate and the textbooks ripped one British missionary to shreds for presuming to eradicate the culture of the Aborigines by teaching them European ways, and how to read, and plough, and raise crops.

My reaction?

“Oh he taught them how to grow their own food, and how to read, so shoot him! That’s just so despicable.”

download (4)

For real, Education, the thing people now say changes the most for oppressed people, and brings about the most Social Equality, is decried in this case because it destroyed their culture.

I’m sure it wasn’t the fact that the army was slaughtering them like sheep, this Missionary was trying to preserve them, in the end he failed to save most of them, and felt it badly, crying at their deaths, as his own account goes. But he felt they were better off dying there than in the bush.

My classmates and the textbooks called this an attitude of “Moral Superiority.”

I called it common decency, thinking someone is better off dying with some dignity, around people who care for them, then shot in the bush like a wild animal. Morally speaking, that sounds like the superior option, doesn’t it?

I wish I was exaggerating how unfair this was. But because he was a Christian, he must be wrong for assuming he was morally superior to these people. He must be justifying his part in this.

Robinson, was his name, if you want to look it up. Robinson seems to me to be more against his own people’s ruthless treatment, then to feel he is better than the Aborigines, but I suppose I’m just too white to understand.

The following week, we discussed the Congo, the subject of the book I mentioned above.

My teacher made the ironic statement, backed up by our textbooks, that the reason things finally changed in Africa after many decades, was because some of them were educated like Europeans, and learned to speak their language and reason with them in ways they could understand.

You catch that? One week, it’s bad to educate them and override their culture, the next week it’s the only path to their freedom. (My professor said it was complicated, which is another way of saying we don’t have an answer for if it was right or not.)

I would add that is why The Civil Rights movement succeeded here in America, slaves who got educated, freed people got educated. One can quibble all day about equal opportunity, but education was the only doorway to it for them.

And it was often White Masters who educated some of their slaves, though later it was made illegal, and white people started schools for them.

It was unfair still in many ways, prejudice is ugly, but it’s kind of funny that the very people (by race) who enacted it, also gave the oppressed the tools to break free.

If you think my Secular history class at my liberal college is going to acknowledge that with any sense of injustice toward the White people for ignoring it, then…you didn’t read the above carefully.

While my class begrudgingly admits there was good Europeans, they pass over the glaringly obvious truth, that Europeans were always part of toppling the Imperialism that they enacted. No nation is entirely unified in how it perceives what its leaders are doing.

They are even more anxious to ignore the other obvious truth: Christianity, which is blamed for aiding in the oppression, was the only reason it ever ended.

It’s like an inoculation. Christianity came into the other countries with the Oppressors, like a mild form of the disease, carrying some incorrect ideas of the times, but also the worldview that does the most universally for the dignity of human life, and the value of charity. Like a vaccination, Christianity helped the native peoples build up an understanding of European ways and religion that they later used to protest their rights to freedom and fair treatment. The Missionaries were also the only ones who usually educated the natives, which is what enabled them to integrate and rise above the culture.

In effect, Christianity was warped into something that would justify White Oppression, but it also preserved the idea of all human beings having value, which later was what put a stop to at least some of the oppression.

People fault Christianity for being used the wrong way,, but will barely give a mention to how it was used the right way, to help people.

And I have yet to hear anyone talk about how Christian based systems basically give power to anyone they oppress to eventually overthrow them, based on moral reasons. It’s like they give the knife to cut off their own arm, if they start to sin.

If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to depart into hell. (Matthew 5:29-30)

The only thing that would satisfy these people is the notion that Europeans should have just stayed home to begin with, never changed anything, and contented ourselves with our eager resources…how unrealistic that option is is negligible, because it’s clearly morally wrong to take over another country…

Says who?

I mean, are we going to start saying it’s morally wrong to take over another business? Where does it end?

Despite what they try to paint it as, the Europeans were not solely violent. A lot happened with trade deals, also. Sometimes unfair ones, sometimes they started out as mutually beneficial and then devolved. Sometimes, it didn’t happen that way at all.

You won’t find it in too many religions that Conquest is actually Wrong, in the sight of God, or the gods. Some cultures glorify it to a divine calling.

Where does the notion that is is wrong even come from?

No country can really back this up. Even if it’s wrong, no one can hope to prevent it from happening in one way or another.

So, I fail to see the point of teaching us that it was wrong, and then leaving it there… well, what now? What’s the big conclusion, History?

The claim can be made that History class should not be giving us new ideas, but telling it like how it happened.

That’s ludicrous. Any narrative of history is going to present new ideas to a student who has not studied it before, and a clearly slanted narrative is going to lead them to blame one party more than another.

It used to be slanted in Europeans favor, it is not slanted against us, we must look bad at all costs.

Maybe it was bad, I think in the context of the time, it’s harder to tell.

But even so, it’s over now. We have real world problems. Oppression continues in new forms, and old forms, but not the forms of the Modern Era, as it’s called.

I don’t think we are being taught to recognize the signs of this any more in our everyday lives, or we’d realize how the modern devices every single student has in their pocket are products of a system very similar to the ones we read about.

And do we care? Can we give them up?

Maybe, it’s harder to judge, hmm?

There will always be oppression as long as people are sinful, and people are in charge, or their creations are in charge. Running things by computers has not improved them.

The question for us, is what can we do to make it better or worse? 

We are dependent on these businesses for our way of life, undoing that is not the work of  a day. It was the same in the Congo, the same everywhere. By the time people realize it’s a problem they’re stuck, just like with an addiction.

I choose to keep applying my faith to every situation, because I think G. K. Chesterton was right when he wrote that the charge that Christianity obscures progress and keeps us in the Dark Ages is ridiculous when “Christianity is the only thing that has ever gotten us out of it.” (Orthodoxy)

Which is not to say Religion has never been an obstacle to advancements, but it has also been the main drive behind them. It comes down to the individuals every time.

The Bible is also concerned more with men’s souls then their station, and Christians have often taken that attitude also, but in the process, have done more to elevate men’s station in their concern for his soul.

For Missionaries have worried that mistreatment will make men bitter against God.

This is how things come right in the end, that and the Grace of God. There’s ups and downs in history, I for one think we should be looking to see what they did right, and not forever listing what they did wrong, as if we are free from error and know so much better than our forebears.

That’s what they thought too.

Mistakes have to be remembered if anyone is tempted to think their nation is perfect (that has led to a lot of evil) but it’s better to feel there is nobility left to preserve than to feel your people have always been irredeemably bad.

That’s where I leave it, I’d rather be proud of my heritage than ashamed of it, until next time– Natasha.

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#1 vs the Greatest Hero.

So, Season 4 of MHA finished last week.

I’m not going to review it in detail because I know a lot of people still haven’t seen it, no spoilers here.

I just want to talk about the show’s themes a little bit. I generally prefer to focus on the character’s themselves, but the overall theme MHA has become pretty interesting.

It was my first anime, so the normal kids gets powers against all odds took me off guard. I had not seen Sky High yet, and it didn’t strike me as a Spiderman type of story, so I thought it would be more like the usually Western Underdog film. The Karate Kid type, if you will. Kid goes form useless to boss in a short time under a great mentor.

Which is the story, but with a superpower instead of great training, because if we’re honest, All Might’s training is acceptable at best until season 4, it got a little better there.

 

The theme of MHA started as “What does it mean to really be a hero?”

In season 1, that meant just acting to save people and being brave, that’s your usual anime fare I now know.

But in season 2 it started to diverge. Post Festival arc, we were introduced to Hero Killer Stain, and the news that many people are unhappy with hero society’s hero worship.

The hero worship of the world of MHA, which is slightly futuristic, but otherwise just like our world, only with superheros instead of pop stars and athletes, is accepted as either an annoyance or a perk by the pro heroes, from EraserHead to Mt Lady to the lesser known ones who aren’t named.

By the villains, it’s called out as disgusting, perverting the true meaning of heroism, though their standards are kind of arbitrary. One, Spinner, says “As soon as a hero accepts payment, they are not a real hero.” Another, Dabi, seems to feel heroes are irresponsible in their personal lives (there’s theories about him.) While Shigaraki just  hates All Might, and feels society is lazy and happy because heroes are always pretending everything is okay.

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Deku, our protagonist, is typically, unable to answer any of these criticisms with anything other than “try harder”.

 

But the other heroes, the supporting or secondary MCs actually have some thoughts on these issues.

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Todoroki, personally and painfully aware of the lack of personal responsibility in a hero’s home life, is tempted to see the system as flawed. He also questions authority more than any of the other students.

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Bakugo, who went from being my least favorite to my top favorite male character in season 3, and onward (power of fan made stuff) calls out the idea that heroes can just be outwardly nice, and emphasizes that grit and determination are the key component between a hero and a weakling with good intentions, even if he does this in a very abrasive way. Bakugo demands that people be real with him, even if it means they are less nice that way, in his own way agreeing with Todoroki’s disgust with fake good PR. (Maybe that’s why they don’t hate each other even though they don’t get along.)

Practical Typing | My Hero Academia: Eijiro Kirishima (ESFP)

Kirishima declares he won’t even feel like  a man, let alone a hero, if he cannot take action himself. While one could argue the situation was beyond him, its notable that Bakugo would not have been rescued without his help, while the show doesn’t exactly say this, it does not wholly condemn the kids, as All Might commends Deku for his plan. Kirishima’s point that not just a hero, but any person, should want to help their friend is a good counter to the idea that only heroes are allowed to be brave in a society where you can be arrested for helping just because you are not a certified professional.

People will defend the idea that only professionals should step in, and it works fine if pros are around and functioning, but the hard truth is in Real Life, emergencies specifically tend to happen where there is no professional help, why else would they be emergencies. Many people’s lives have been saved by common sense, a little First Aid knowledge, or the guts to take a risk that was illogical. That is what heroics are made of. Professionals are just doing a job, an important job, but heroism implies it was unusual for the person to do what they did. Therefore it cannot really be a job, or else, it was an unforeseen element of the job, like risking a new medical procedure, that they would not have been prepared for.

Heroes traditionally are at odds with society, which is why t he problem of MHA’s world is really that society is attempting to control heroes, thereby rendering the term meaningless.

The world defines Heroes as people who save people, but the word has many more connotations than that.

It’s actually a problem not just in anime, but in the surplus of superheros we have now, in the MCU and DCU, there’s just too many. The idea that they are unusual, or different from the regular law, is hard to buy.

IF heroes are like anyone else, just with powers, then, as The Incredibles points out “no one will be (special).”

The point of the Incredibles is not that being exceptional because of DNA is inherently preferable, but that if you are exceptional, you should be able to use those gifts freely without conforming to the norm. That can apply to morality, one line in the movie’s opening newsreel goes “Average citizens, average heroes, quietly and anonymously, trying to make the world a better place.”

How can a hero be average? That’s the real point of the movie. Whether its because they do the right thing even if it gets them in trouble, or because they can break cars or run on water, you can’t expect a hero to be like everyone else, and if you try to make everyone a hero, you take any and all meaning from the word.

Like that stupid saying “Everyone is the hero of their own story.”

IT’s meant to hype people up, like, you can libe our life in a big way.

And you can, most certainly, you may well get to be a hero.

But you are not the hero of your own story, newsflash: Life is not about you. If your life is about you, it’s pretty pathetically small, because that’s just one person.

MHA does not go that far, and it makes a lot of good points, but there’s one question that’s haunting the fans right now (those who are interested in this theme that is.)

Deku is supposed to become the greatest hero, but Heroes, as a whole, are not all that great. They fit a mold. they are fine as people, but when we try to hold them up as examples, even All Might, the ex-number one, has plenty of short-sightedness that makes him a  good hero publically, but more of a trying-really-hard private one.

What makes a hero Great?

All Might says it’s both compassion and grit. That’s probably true.

But a third thing that makes the difference between a hero and a soldier is the ability to see things clearly.

We’ve seen many problems with the hero world, and it parallels our world in a lot of ways. We can sacrifice true excellence for just the show of it. True compassion for just outward altruism. We don’t want to know what’s behind it all.

As Todoroki and Momo both mention at one point, being able to judge a situation accurately is key to being a hero, something both Deku and Bakugo, the two halves of the same coin according to the show, lack in compared to those two.

rt your anime/manga OTPs 💕 on Twitter: "Shouto Todoroki and Momo ...

Wisdom is rarely the most popular thing in the culture, but to be a real hero, you have to have it, at least a little. One act of heroism, you might get by on guts and innovation, but to be the Greatest, you have to be able to see solutions to problems.

And you have to have the courage to tell people, even people in authority, that they are doing it wrong.

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Not to point fingers, but anime has a serious kissing-up to authority problem, even if the authority is clearly wrong, they can never be called out for it. (I’ve seen a few exceptions, but they were light.)

It’s creeping into American media too, much more than I like.

It used to be a given that a hero had to challenge the system, now the message is to work with it.

Well, if you can, but as CA: Civil War put it “Compromise where you can, and where you can’t…stand your ground, and tell them ‘no, you move.'” (Best part of the film.)

I guess I’m rebel at heart, I heard the line that I shouldn’t question authority too much growing up, and then I realized that that was just an excuse to keep allowing the same crap as before.

Of course, change is scary. It’s risky. What would everyone think?

People say, it doesn’t matter what others think of you. It’s true, in a way. But may I remind you, that you can lose your life in many places for being different, thinking different, or criticizing authority. You can lose your job, your reputation, your friends, and your family.

So, yes, it does matter. But we have a responsibility to dot he right thing regardless of that, and anyone who does not, most certainly can be labeled a coward.

The courage to be a good citizen is nonexistent, usually, but the courage to be a hero, that’s uncommon.

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There’s a difference between being Number One, i. e. most popular and most effective (in a way) and the Greatest, which reflects on your true character.

With that, I think this is over for now, until next time–Natasha.

 

 

1000+ images about Deku trending on We Heart It

 

Anime won’t Fix-it!

Let’s talk about anime again. That’s a cheerful subject.

I’ve watched quite a few since last year, when I really started to get into it. I started with RWBY, which is no exactly anime, but it modeled after it, then I moved to MHA.

I got spoiled on MHA because it’s so much better than most of the other ones I’ve seen. I  think the two best ones next to it were Love is War, and Lovely Complex.

I’d have to give some honorable mentions to the SOL Animes “The Great Passage” “Kabukibu”, “Library War” (more of a futuristic one), which were fun even if they were not as involved. They are also trope exceptions often enough to the foibles of Shonen and Romance anime.

Shonen anime really has a problem, I notice, with how it tends to end. I think too many of them go on for too long, and strangely have a habit of ending without resolving all the threads like the relationships, or even some major plot points. Or they will build something up for 3 seasons, and then make it really anticlimactic when they reveal it. Err.

But aside from more petty complaints, I’ve been noticing a fundamental difference between anime and American Medias approach to difficulties within story.

In America, problems are usually introduced in a story with the intention to deal with them. Remove the sources of the problem, find a way to overcome it, or fix yourself. It’s in the cheesiest tropes like the make-over montage.

I’m so used to that, I never considered someone might write a story where that wasn’t the goal.

But I began to notice anime are not written that way.

If a problem is introduced in an anime that is not simple an tough opponent needing to go down (which is so basic a kid could figure it out in 2 seconds) the problem is generally not resolved.

If it is resolved, it is almost never by removing the cause of it.

Case in point:

In the hot mess that is Naruto, the main problem of the show is getting Sasuke back, and convincing him not to be evil anymore. Though it often feels like no one on his team cares that much whether he’s evil so long as he’s with them (Sakura literally offers to go join a psychopath’s weird cult if it means she can go with Sasuke.)

In the end the problem is “resolved” by Sasuke deciding not to kill every leader of the villages, and Naruto himself, you know, like any generous person would. Sasuke then accepts Naruto’s friendship, allegedly, but leaves the village anyway. Naruto does not stop him, despite this being the very thing he was trying to avoid all this time. Sasuke’s many flaws are never called out, nor is his selfishness. Sasuke himself seems to conclude there is just nothing for him in Leaf Village, and he’s probably right.

At no point was Sasuke confronted on why his choices were evil, why he was a fool for making them, and how he needed to choose to accept love because it was the only way for him to truly find peace. Instead, that last one is implied, the other two are never, ever even suggested by the other characters, or any character.

It was the same with other villains on the show too. The show acted like nothing was wrong with what they did, except they didn’t have the right goal…not that they were evil or anything…yeah…

Sai, my boy, was about the only one who ever bothered to try to point out the many irrational ideas of the characters, and Temari, best girl, was the only one who confronted people on their crap. They both get ignored most of the time.

But Naruto was not the only show that did this:

I just got done with an anime called “Say I love You.” It had enjoyable characters, plenty of cute moments, and nice animation.

It started out pretty good. Shy, isolated girl meets popular but kind boy, they connect. She has to learn to trust, etc.

But, this anime (realistically) portrayed a lot of immaturity in the relationships. I was okay with that, that’s highschool right? But I thought, they’ll grow, right? They’ll realize why they should not act this way.

Wrong.

While some stuff was called out, it was the minor stuff. The real problem was that the male character was a pushover, a terrible judge of character, and a Classic White Knight to the point where he would do the stupidest stuff because he wanted to rescue the person, even when it hurt him and his girlfriend to do it. He was also kind of possessive.

The girl, on the other hand, would never tell him he was being a jackass. Or call him out on his crap excuses, and demand more respect. She didn’t learn much from episode 1-13.

It was real stuff, and stuff people need to work through if they want to be in a committed relationship. Otherwise you bet it would lead to affairs and miscommunication.

On any number of other anime I’ve seen, if a character has an issue, they resolve to try harder, to become stronger to overcome it. It’s never that they just need to get rid of the problem. That if they removed that poisonous, cursed power they got, they might not *gasp* be corrupted by it. (Duh!)

Or if they just told this toxic person to stay the flip away from them, they might not have to deal with their crap anymore.

It’s like anime can’t say someone is just bad, that an idea or power is just evil, they have to give a reason for it so that the person can be redeemed.

I love redeemed villains, but anime has made me develop a distaste for it, because very often they do not actually redeem the villains by calling them out on their evil, and having them repent. They just sort of decide to accept friendship, and that’s it. No one ever has PTSD from all the terrible things they did. Heck, you can even ship one of the characters they beat the crap out of with them (I’ve seen this more than once.)

Forgiveness is beautiful, but it should not be cheap. I’d like to see some characters struggle with it (points MHA for Todoroki being more realistic about that. Please don’t ruin it.)

Why does anime do this? Why not just resolve things?

I have to wonder, if it’s a Cultural thing.

Not to profile. But I could see a reason for it. I live in America, my country got foudned by the attitude if something is wrong, you get rid of it, or you change it. Throw the tea in the harbor, kick the British out, make slavery illegal. That’s also a European attitude.

Unsurprisingly, Christiantiy has been the dominant religion of Europe and American, and Christianity clearly teaches if there’s an evil, get rid of it. Or make it better. But don’t accept it and try to conform to a corrupt society.

In Asia, on the other hand, you have Buddhism and Hinduism. The point of those religions is to get above your circumstances mentally, by choosing to think of higher things…but not to actually do anything about it, because things proceed as they should. I do not think that means that Asians do not change things, I think they do, but the attitude is in their art, and ideology, whether they realize it or not.

Actually, anime would suggest they struggle with it, as it is usually hard for the main characters to accept that things will  not change, and they must just keep doing their best no matter what.

It’s common for Chinese and Japanese students to commit suicide if they fail academically, if you cannot rise above your circumstances by meeting government exceptions, why even bother? (Sorry, not to be insensitive, I just think grades are a stupid thing to base your value on.)

Anime present highly corrupt worlds for our consideration, but often it does not change them, it just tells us to keep striving for excellence…even if excellence in such a system could not really be said to be a success.

To go back to Naruto, he tries to get the village’s recognition and become Hokage, because that’s how you show you are worth something in that world. But the village is increasingly shown to be ignorant, cruel, and stubborn to a fault. They don’t value people based on character, but on flashy abilities, and then they try to kill those same people when they become too dangerous. Why on earth would you want the approval of such hacks? Also, what is being Hokage worth when all the previous Hokages created this mess?

Why do you need to be recognized by others in order to be content?

All very good questions you won’t see the show even attempt to answer. Let alone Naruto.

It would take me a whole study paper’s worth to talk about every example I’ve seen, if you watch anime, you probably get it.

It’s no wonder the industry has so many fan fiction writers, people want proper endings.

I still enjoy the shows, but expecting them to be profound is starting to feel like a vain hope.

My point obviously is we need answers. I know some would argue that, that anime is more realistic, to them I would say, your attitude contradicts every major historical movement of the world ever. If you think we don’t need real solutions, you think we don’t need freedom, also. Freedom is a solution.

If you think you cannot change your life, I feel sorry for you, please believe me, you can. I have.

Until next time–Natasha.

Ministering and the Mobile Home Park.

Okay, okay, I won’t write about the Virus anymore. I hope.

I haven’t looked (because I don’t care) but I bet that’s the main subject of a ton of the blogs on this domain right now.

I like that a lot of the YouTubers I follow are choosing to still try to make their videos and keep it regular. Trying to brighten people’s day a little. I will say my blog traffic is increasing.

I’d rather not get traffic because of an epidemic, but maybe people will find it uplifting.

I have another story for you today.

My church is continuing with their efforts at helping. My pastor keeps saying he wants it to be like the book of Acts, getting out there and ministering to people on the street, at their homes, the old fashioned way. Thinking of creative ways to have service and stay connected.

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So, today we went to the mobile home park behind our church to take people emergency food and give them a flier to call us if they needed anything else. Also writing down their needs and offering to pray for them. They were seniors, the high risk people, so we wore gloves, and someone had graciously donated masks.

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I cant help but feel being part of a big church at a time like this has its perks. My church has a network of people who communicate to supply things. I kind of took that for granted before, but we’re probably still functioning because of that. Many churches are just shut down entirely.

I wonder how other religious institutions are doing. I wouldn’t have any way to know except Googling it.

Some people were scared to come outside and take stuff from us. Others came right out and smiled. Some told us they didn’t need it, they had enough. Others that they did need it and other stuff. Some said they’d just been praying and doing devotionals themselves this morning. There were a lot of Christians… I mean, I guess if you live behind a church, might as well be christian. (I don’t think that has anything to do with it really, but it must make it more encouraging to drive by that every day when you leave the unit.)

We still had boxes left over because so may people said they didn’t need it and to just go on and give it to someone who did. Some were crying because they were so touched that we thought of them to do this.

It did not seem remarkable to me at the time, but I guess these are the cute stories newspapers like to cover and people like to share on social media. (Hey, go ahead if you want. I don’t mind. You don’t have to though.) I don’t really feel like my life is that unusual, but I do get to be part of things that people think sound really special.

(I wonder how the homeless people in Skid Row are doing, my previous Church takes food there every so often, I’m sure they must be at risk, hopefully the church will find a way to still help them. It’s a bit far for my current church to travel.)

People have suggested that Christians only do stuff like this to feel good about themselves for helping the less fortune, the looked down in society. At a time like this, people’s pride goes into their pocket. I bet people who wouldn’t normally accept help from strangers would take a medical mask from one now, if they could be sure it wasn’t used.

Some people may do charity and volunteer acts in order to feel righteous. I doubt it matters that much to the most desperate people, as long as their needs are getting met, why should they care? It makes a difference to your own soul, and to your coworkers, what your attitude is, but the nice thing about Charity, is if it’s a good charity, it won’t make much difference to the people receiving it. (Not that that applies to everything, prayer without true compassion is both useless and discouraging to the one who receives it.)

Honestly, I think it scares people more that they might be received well. Because then they might have to do it again, and get involved. We humans are afraid of commitment to new things, especially ones we don’t get paid for. Its like money justifies the risk in our minds, but success and changing someone’s life don’t.

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? Goals?

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Or is it really…

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More about this.

Some people think that is because we are selfish, and while we are, many people are willing to be unselfish if it’s within their comfort zone of talents and time. We are more likely to hold back out of fear than straight up selfishness. Fear is selfishness more cleverly disguised.

I am not sure why we are so afraid to do good. For me, it’s the fear that I am not good myself, that I will be shown to be a fake, and will not be able to really help. It took me a long time to become self aware of that, and even longer to really start to overcome it. Now it haunts me, even though it does not necessarily stop me from acting. My sister says “I think it’s called the Flesh.”

Call it that, or the Inner Bully, or Internal Critic, whatever name you have for it. It works the same way.

Human beings feel we have some kind of price to pay in life, that we cannot be Good, or Brave, or Noble, or Heroic. We have lost that right somewhere, and living a small, cowardly life is our just desert for it.

Original Sin can explain that pretty cleanly, though it’s not a popular explanation anymore.

Maybe we no longer have the right to be Great, but the world still has a need for us to be so. It amazes me when I hear the little known stories that get passed around in books, and blogs, and articles, that not a lot pf people read, but they’re so inspiring. The best deeds may be the ones hardly anyone knows about.

What did it mean to someone? That someone cared even enough to knock on their door and give them food? Who knows? Only God.

The Bible says at the end of time, we’ll all give an account for our lives, and our works will be tested with fire. For Christians, the fire will not destroy us, even if our works burn up, because works are not why we are saved. Others will be judged according to their deeds, as well as their lack of faith. Jesus said “He who does not believe is condemned already.”

We are told we’ll be judged for something as personal as “every idle word we speak.” God looks at the heart after all.

The point is, our works may be the most important where we thought they were the least.

There is nothing wrong with famous good deeds. We need to be inspired. Sometimes whole nations need to be changed, people need to be liberated.

But the thing about small deeds, it’s hard for history to pick them apart, and try to read ulterior motives into it. Someone might assign dark motives to helping someone carry their groceries, but it’s far less likely anyone would bother to try.

Social Media has made even little deeds bigger, but the ones we still do with out cameras off and and between our vlogs, are the ones that people will remember the most, the people we did them for anyway. I can’t be the only one who immediately feels I’ve sunk in important whenever I see someone filming.

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This has been longer than I expected…well, in conclusion, I am still encouraging people to think about what they can be doing to help, even if it’s just calling someone, or mailing them food or supplies. Or checking in on elderly neighbors, form a healthy distance of course.

This should be our all the time, but still, times like these are when people really appreciate someone being brave enough to reach out. I tip my metaphorical hat to all of you who are already doing that.

Whoever shuts his ears to the cry of the poor will also cry himself and not be heard.” (Proverbs 21:13)

Until next time, stay honest and healthy–Natasha.