Skip to main content

Every verse seems to be the same as the first

I am unsure how many times in my life I have questioned why people do the things they do. I have probably done it in this blog a half dozen times or more. I know I wrestle with this at least weekly.

I get that people have free will. Any one of us can decide on any given day, hour, or minute whether we are going to do something good or something bad. Something that will help others or something that will hurt others. Something that is "right" and something that is oh-so-wrong.

I realize that most of us don't generally do really good or really bad things; we just live our lives. Sometimes we perform a random act of kindness and we are hopefully mostly nice to our family and friends. Other times we say something unkind, are not truthful, and do things we probably should not. But the truth is, I grapple with those little wrongdoings as much as I struggle to wrap my head around the really heinous things people do.

Yesterday a man walked into Western Psych, a hospital/institute that provides treatment of mental health and addictive disorders in the Burgh, and shot eight people, killing one, before police eventually shot him to death. This is coming on the heels of the teenager who shot and killed three students and injured two others in Ohio.

I know that tragedies like these are rare. We cannot live in fear and wait for something bad to happen. But I think the problem mostly lies in the little things that people do. My guess is a perfectly good person does not one day start shooting at random. I suspect gunmen/women start off making a bad decision or two. It could be as simple as not following the rules, lying, being unkind to or even physical with others, or taking something that is not theirs. Left unchecked, it can just go (and grow) from there.

This morning, J was talking about a kid at school who lied about something J did. J wondered aloud if that person lied to the teacher, did she at least tell her parents what she did wrong. I told J that most likely she did not; this girl probably wanted to "save herself." And then I told J that she is a good kid; she really is. I know she is absolutely disrespectful to me at times. But she knows right from wrong. She does her best to be kind to others. If she does something wrong and a teacher calls her on it, she will admit what she did. Unfortunately, too many others don't do those things.

In J's eight-year-old mind, she cannot understand why a boy would copy off her paper and then tell the teacher he did not do it, even when the teacher said she saw him. J cannot believe that a kid would intentionally push or shove another kid, hurting him or her. J cannot fathom why a kid would constantly ignore what a teacher asks him or her to do. J just does not get that kind of behavior.

Quite frankly, neither do I.


Anonymous said…
You make a good point. Too many times parents, teachers, friends, brush off bad behavior. They think its just kids being kids or they want to be their friends. Then those kids grow up and become nasty adults. When you see an obnoxious mean kid you usually see the same kind of parent. I dunno if just because a kid lies or is disrespectful to his teacher or parent that means he is going to start shooting others but you just never know. Plus think about the kids that are on the receiving end of meanness who do end up acting out.
Facie said…
Anon: I don't/didn't want to imply that just because parents are obnoxious and subsequently the children, that means that those kids are going to turn into felons. I was really just questioning, once again, in a hopefully slightly different way, why/how people do the bad(ish) things they do.

I also don't want to imply that I am perfect, and hopefully it did not come across that way. I have my faults and make a lot of mistakes. But I am pretty darn honest and nice to people, and if I do make a mistake, I own up to it. I just cannot say the same for so many people. But I realize that just because those are two really important things to me, they are not important to everyone else.

Popular posts from this blog


Lately, I have had some anxiety. I have been waking up within an hour of when I fall asleep (partially because my bladder has its own timetable). And then I lie awake, worrying about various things. Mostly I worry that I am failing as a parent. I worry that I allow my child to be disrespectful to me more than she should. I worry that I am not forcing my shy child to do more things. And I worry that the few things I am pushing her to do will make her resent me. I worry that she gets stressed about school. I worry that she is bothered because she does not have a lot of friends. I worry because I don't know why that is.

I worry that we will be stuck in our house in our bad school district, a place where we would not send our child to high school when she graduates in two years (two years!). Then I worry that our somewhat introverted child will have to go to cyber school. Because there is just no way that we could afford to send her to Catholic high school, for which tuition is curren…

Why I am an "Other"

Last month while I was getting my driver's license picture taken, I tried to change my political party affiliation. For whatever reason, my choices were Democrat, Republican, Other, and None. But first, how I got there.

I registered as a Democrat when I first registered to vote, just before the '92 election. At that time, I was "kind of" liberal (for growing up in a somewhat rural area in western PA), and pretty much all of my relatives were registered that way, so it made sense. I was not really into politics at that young age, however.

As I got into my late 20s, I started to realize I was becoming more conservative, so a few years later, when it was time to renew my driver's license, I changed to Republican. I still remember the day at work when I told my coworker Anne that I was really a Republican. She told me she had known it for years. During the 2008 election, I was on board with John McCain running for president, mostly because I thought he was a good pe…

My first and hopefully my last biposy (or I would rather be at the beach)

This past Monday afternoon I had my biopsy. Up until Sunday night, I was not worried. In fact, I was never really concerned about having cancer; it was the needle part that bothered me. As it turns out, there is more than a needle; there is an actual incision. So it was not surprising that I only got a few hours of sleep. But on a positive note, I cruised right down the Parkway that morning, being the Monday before the 4th, so there was that.

I got there at the prescribed 30 minutes ahead of time; in fact, it was probably close to 35 minutes! I had to wait about 10 minutes, during which I could feel my seat vibrate (still not sure about that; I was tired but I don't think I was imaging it). Then I went back, changed, and waited in the "gowned waiting area" for no more than 5 minutes. Not even enough time to find out whose twins Jennifer Garner was pregnant with! WARNING: What follows will be detailed, though not too graphic.

Then I went back to a room, where someone as…