We Got a Lot of Class


We Got a Lot of Class

There are so many of us who carry through life certain angst, anxieties, doubts, emotional experiences, and guilt. If there was truly a way to quantify these feelings the numbers might shock us, or, at least, give us a better sense of the world in which we live. These feelings of course touch every segment of our worldwide populations. It matters not if you are poor, rich, or somewhere in between.

To the degree we carry one or all of these feelings determine how we make our way in life, how we are perceived by those around us, to the degree we can dislike, hate, and love. No class sector in our world community is exempt.

People work their way through poverty into the envied and glittering rich class… Some find their way there by attrition, a lucky lottery number, and/or by devious means. It is perhaps easier for the rich to find escape routes away from these feelings, but they are there nonetheless. Whatever the merits or demerits conveyed on the rich they are generally the group that invest their money into beginning or expanding companies that create jobs and more wealth.

The Middle Class (and its sub-divisions) ebbs and flows with the economic indicators – the GNP, growth, recession, all the fancy words that define the great capitalistic engine that moves our goods and services forward. This class depends on institutions like banks, credit unions, entrepreneurs (investors and job creators), and sound, well-managed, wise government agencies that function on their behalf. The feelings and emotional experiences are always prevalent in this class as well.

The Lower Class (and its sub-divisions) is the unfortunate class among us who most generally exited the womb into meager surroundings. Some will stay there for their entire lifetimes. Others, by love and nurturing, by their own initiative and mental clarity, will fight their way to the other classes. The feelings and emotional experiences are most easily felt in this class, and, in many cases, it is the class most accessible to change.

If, then, these simple premises are accepted, what is the point of this post?

When these feelings and emotional experiences are connected to the world, we have a combustible situation. The United States is hated by certain groups. Some groups want to kill us, end our freedom and the principles upon which we were founded. We are considered arrogant and a bully by many. At some point, perhaps our government backed a country’s leader, supplied money to aid in a cause we felt was beneficial and humane to its people, made some mistakes in judgment along the way. As a nation we have tried to right any perceived wrongs but are met with defiance and hatred…people still want to kill us and our way of life. We give so much money to countries that harbor those groups who try to kill us. Where does the money go? Does it reach the good people who need it?

The feelings and emotional experiences are real. They are deeply felt in the Middle East (since the dawn of time, countries at war with each other), in Russia, in China, in certain Latin American countries, in Africa, and other parts of the world. We the people of the United States are of many nationalities. We have ‘Projects’ for some of our minorities and lower wage earners. We have ‘ChinaTowns’ and ‘Russian Boroughs’ and Muslim communities. Some assimilate and try to learn our constitution and our principles. Some are in back rooms perhaps plotting ways to destroy our democratic way. We the people have government issues, split along party lines: some wanting less government interference in our private sector businesses, less laws, regulations, and/or executive orders; some wanting more entitlement spending, more regulations, money redistributed to those less fortunate. Yes, indeed, the feelings and emotional experiences are real, more pronounced, more volatile, and, potentially, more dangerous than a civilized society has ever known. Many people want a different world from the one I was born into, the one that gave us the ‘greatest generation’ – the world’s graveyards hold many of their bodies…the beautiful, the brave men and women who died so freedom could hopefully live on.

The ‘machines’ are now with us, adding expediency and pleasure to our lives but also kindling those feelings and emotional experiences. Nuclear weapons are out there. Can we account for them all? Computers dominate our lives as never before, the language of ‘Widgets,’ ‘RSS feeds,’ ‘Apps,’ ‘Tags,’ ‘URLs,’ on and on. Some of us get lost in the new language of the internet. ‘Social Networks’ (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, others) consume our days. Our laptops freeze on us. We rant and rave at the inconvenience of our IT system being down for periods of time. Our dependency has grown exponentially.

All these things gather in our conscious and subconscious minds. We are reminded that history has given us some rough patches to overcome, not without pain and panic, and we can be optimistic and have faith that we will overcome again. Yet, with over 7 billion people occupying this globe, so many of us have not read our history books, learned the lessons therein, and keep repeating some of the same mistakes that caused civilizations to die. Still, we can hope and we can pray…we can ‘let go, let God’!

I’m in the twilight of my years, and these feelings and emotional experiences have gotten me this far without the world coming totally apart. For my children, my grandchildren, my great grandchildren, I’m hoping this is all just an old man’s over-reactions to the nuclear age.

Maybe there are times when we just need to stop what we are doing, as difficult as that can be for harried and hurried minds, take a jog or a walk along the beach, a mountain trail, through the streets of our towns — insist that our fragile feelings not imprison us within cages of hopelessness. Maybe we just, ‘C’est la vie’! But, then, maybe the world will not let us be so nonchalant…

I just can’t seem to get the image out of my head of Charlton Heston standing on that beach with our cherished ‘Statue of Liberty’ there in the sand and him uttering something to the effect: “We finally did it!”

I get a bit more intense in my new book, “Joe Public’s Political Perspective” (http://www.goo.gl/NNdHV0). Hopefully you can find time to read it. Since I know not how to be a political analyst or pundit, the musings in the book are simple. After all, I am a simple man.

My other books can be previewed at IAN http://www.goo.gl/fuxUA

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11 thoughts on “We Got a Lot of Class

  1. Thanks, Bill. Thought provoking as usual. Of course I loved “Joe Public” and hope many other readers will find it.


  2. Well said, Billy! That final scene you reference, with Charlton Heston, gives me chills every time I see it. I have faith and pray to God our country won’t get to that point, at least in our lifetime.


    1. Indeed, Jill! It’s my feeling that so many leaders of our world are more interested in power than in creating sane and sound policies that benefit the masses… ‘Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.’


  3. An interesting post, Billy Ray, and it raises many points that could be discussed, probably at length. I hope that you do well with your new book.


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