There is absolutely nothing wrong with recognizing and praising people who do extraordinary things. Our pop culture is constantly searching out local heroes, men and women who make life better – usually for the less fortunate. That’s great, but what about everyday people who have neither the time, inclination, or facility to be an everyday hero. It takes a specific character to become a local hero. It also takes being in the right place at the right time, and to live in a location where you are allowed to do things to help others. Location is important, trust me. Where I live, only select individuals are allowed to be involved with charity. If you are not one of the select, you are neither wanted or allowed to get involved. It is a popularity contest.
I’m more interested in seeing normal people being praised, but they never are. We’re talking the father who raises three little girls, quite successfully, living on the edge of oblivion, to be a good father. He’s never praised. The woman who gets up, fixes breakfast, gets the kids off to school, goes to work, comes home, cleans, fixes dinner, gets the kids to bed and starts it over and over and over again, never expecting any sort of a reward needs to be praised.
These people never are. They aren’t glamorous, they aren’t important. They don’t stand out in a crowd, they are just there, the bedrock of our society, year in and year out, until their lives are over, never having ever been acknowledged for just being themselves.
The world is so anxious to praise someone special that they forget normal people, good kids, just normal everyday kids need praise and awards. They’re the kind of kids who go unnoticed, never get in trouble, do their work, but never have the money for college, and are forced to live on diminished expectations because they are – normal. There are no scholarships. No one gives a rip about helping them. Why bother? They aren’t special needs. They aren’t honor students. They don’t play football, or basketball. They are just there, living. According to our society, they are almost worthless.
When did good, everyday, normal people discover they were not special, weren’t great, and are just the masses, not even worth welfare, a pat on the back, or praise? What happened to a world and a society where the mom and pop who struggled to keep their business open and did the right thing were not worthy of praise?
We live in a culture where consumptive consumer charity is demanded of us. It is extorted from us. It doesn’t matter if a person has reached a point where nothing is left, charity is expected of us – rather like the inhabitants of Nottingham, being taxed to oblivion by the sheriff. We are damned if we don’t give. It is required. People are almost beaten into submission. You must be charitable or you will be _____. It must be public charity, for all too see. Never mind that Christ tells us to go about our charity quietly to the point where the right hand never sees what the left is doing, or vice versa.
Social justice is blackmailed out of us. Never mind that the very concept of social justice is a contradiction in terms. There is nothing socially just about it. In order for social justice to exist, a person who might be more fortunate, or part of a different socio-economic group must become the victim of social justice. Something must be taken from them, destroyed, so that the less fortunate might have it.
Social justice is socialism. It is a world where local heroes work to help the less fortunate, and the regular, everyday people who just try to survive are pushed to the point where they are eventually marginalized in the community. They are no longer of value. If someone isn’t of a special recognized group who have been anointed by society to receive this public largess, or if they are not part of the social justice warrior group, they are ignored. They are noting. They are rapidly becoming little more than dirt. It is well and good to help those in need, but, when it reaches a point where the giver and the receiver are more important than anyone else in the community, something is out of balance.
We the little people need praise, too. We’re the men and women who stay sober, don’t do drugs, don’t commit crimes, get ourselves in the news, or do something flashy. All we are trying to do is to survive. Too bad what we are doing isn’t worthy of recognition and praise.
Normal never is.