I really liked this post by Janeanne. It helps you think about some other important issues that are involved in our business.
I was just 21 and getting ready to vote for the first time when Dad revealed his take on the "dense forest of politics" and how to decipher what "branches" are in play when the game is all about dispensing power and money.
"Just remember two things," he said, "First, know your own philosophy of life. Be able to say what it is in a short sentence, and act on it; and second, do your homework on the candidates using objective resources. Then pick the one most in line with your philosophy"
"I don't know if I am a Republican or a Democrat, or an Independent, " I told him.
Dad smiled ... "You are a HUMANITARIAN," he informed me.
That's what I was, all right, and what I still am (at least trying to be) today.
According to Wikipedia, humanitarians believe that " all human beings deserve respect and dignity and should be treated as such. Therefore, humanitarians work towards advancing the well-being of humanity as a whole. [Humanitarianism] is antithesis of the "us vs. them" mentality that characterizes tribalism and ethnic nationalism. Humanitarians abhor slavery, violation of basic and human rights, and discrimination on the basis of features such as color of skin, religion, ancestry, place of birth, etc. Humanitarianism drives people to save lives, alleviate suffering and promote human dignity in the middle of man-made or natural disasters."
Humanitarianism is embraced by movements and people across the political spectrum. The informal ideology can be summed up by a quote from Albert Schweitzer: "Humanitarianism consists in never sacrificing a human being to a purpose." SO...my philosophy, stated succinctly is never to sacrifice a human being to a purpose.
Sometimes I think that if we don't start talking with one another, we will go on forever sacrificing human beings to the gods of superiority and greed.
Still, I cling to the notion that there can be a collaborative solution to human misery .
I deplore the prospect of one or two thousand more years of the outmoded "us vs. them" gig.. I think we can do better than that. And, I have reason to hope that's possible, you know!
Seems collaboration has been catching on more and more these days, whether in the practice of real estate, education or science and technology.
For example, interdisciplinary teams of scientists, clinicians, technicians and other experts have pledged to work together to accelerate ground-breaking cancer research.
And just this September, an unprecedented collaboration brought together the major television networks, entertainment industry executives, celebrities and prominent leaders in cancer researchand patient advocacy where ABC, CBS and NBC donated one hour of simultaneous commercial-free primetime for a nationally televised fundraising event that aimed at rallying the public around the goal of ending cancer's reign as a leading cause of death.
I'm impressed. Does this mean that we are getting that dusting out the old us vs. them win/lose "crapola" doesn't cut it when there is no win or lose ... Just lose?.. Can we hope for the understanding that within the tight confines of diplomacy there is little room for flaring tempers and threats? Humanitarians, let's just see how the 2008 US presidential election plays out and evaluate our progress then.
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