Besides not having to ask our parents for the car, a rare recompense of aging might be increased awareness of our commonality.
Much of my youth was spent discovering core values among the discards. The journey included divergent jobs, cultures, revelries, religious, political, philosophical and scientific ideas.
People in my profession seldom become wealthy. I’ve often wondered if I’d been born into money, or with different physical or aptitudinal characteristics, or been raised in a broken home instead of by solid, middle-class parents, would it have changed my ethos.
Obviously, all I know is what nature, nurture and experience have created. Of course, that could be abruptly metamorphosed tomorrow by a nasty accident, disease or criminal.
With the exception of sociopaths, narcissists and xenophobic numbskulls, I believe that we — religious or atheist, genius or average, beautiful or plain, wealthy or poor — share a core connection.
Though we may be unwise in stereotyping amorphous groups — ”Africans,” “Arabs,” “illegal immigrants,” “liberals,” “conservatives,” “southerners,” “northerners,” “bikers,” “teenagers,” “old people,” “ “jocks,” “nerds” — we atone through our compassion for the individual members.
Until we descend into irremediable chaos — that is a core value that gives me hope.
Wendel Sloan has lived in Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, New Mexico, Texas and on Guam. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org