Wednesday, September 28, 2016

If you "light your hair on fire"....

There are many varieties of ways to tackle a problem. One that's been gaining a great deal of attention and momentum is the "light your hair on fire" or "let's destroy everything" approach. That's the approach that's popular when everything appears far too overwhelming to comprehend and deal with rationally. Just set it ablaze and destroy the whole thing.
The reasoning appears to be that total destruction is far better than working with what exists. Results may be immediate - huge impact - but then what? There's no vision beyond the destruction. There's no thought of what happens after the fire burns out. There's simply no rational reasoning behind the so called plan. After the blaze - after the exhilaration of the annihilation is over, what's left?
Critical thinking has evaporated. We've become a nation that's hungry to consume fast talk, reality TV, sensationalism that feeds a thirst for blood. We love blame and demonization. We elevate those who have gladiator qualities. We crave a knock out punch - a dramatic crash - a bone crushing collision of bodies. Our measure of success is encased in instant gratification. We want a magic pill, an energy rush, a winning lottery ticket. And if a problem seems too large - level the whole neighborhood around it.
Our problem is that we think in terms of days, months and years instead of decades and generations. "Rome was not built in a day" and it was not destroyed in a day either. Our national fiber is unraveling due to short sighted, "light your hair on fire", destructive thinking. We need to measure everything we do in terms of the outcome 10 years and twenty years from now.
Let's start asking for a 10 year plan. Let's start asking how this decision, today, will play out for the next 20 years. Let's stop thinking so small. Let's stop the destruction mindset and start building something.

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