Making life & death decisions for other people without accepting responsibility for the consequences is a form of moral bankruptcy. Letting people suffer or die when you have the power to help them — doing nothing to help — because of a political philosophy or due to what a lobbyist wants is not moral, no matter how you wrap it in the flag & your vision of the Bible.

If growing up means anything, it should mean that you can (at least sometimes) look at a situation, recognize it from prior experience, and see the likely risk & consequences before proceeding into it. No one on earth is granted perfect foresight, of course, but grown-ups know how to avoid hurting themselves & others, which is why we hold them accountable when they do so whether by action or neglect.

As I look back over the past 5 decades, it seems clear that America has lost the knack for raising grown-ups & putting them into leadership. How else do you explain the host of problems that beset us, all of which have short-term thinking at their root?

It is as if the birth of the Baby Boom generation AND the radio-and-TV generation before it unleashed a wave of ME-First-Right-Now childishness that continues to this day.

Is bad parenting to blame? Mass media? Demographic shifts from rural to urban? Working mothers? Civil rights?

Is there a conspiracy? To do what? Involving who? One conspiracy or many?

Your thoughts on this are invited.


About Tim Gatewood

55+, male, widowed. Mobile Notary Public and Signing Agent, Freelance Writer, and Ordained Minister. Willing servant to cats. Science fiction and fantasy fan, avid reader, Founder of the Darrell Awards. Author of _Getting Started As A Notary Signing Agent_ (available from Please be kind to one another.
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4 Responses to Consequences

  1. Tina R-b says:

    I was a child when I began raising my son. He is more grown up than I am and proves it daily. He is a firefighter/paramedic. He sees things daily that few can imagine. I witnessed a fatal stabbing and it has haunted me since. The first paragraph of your article brought on a flashback because I thought, at the time, I could have done something to help the guy, but I was too far away and there really wasn’t anything I could have done, but it has taken 17 years of therapy for me to half believe that to be truth. I still have the idea that if my job was not what it was and there was not a conflict of interest to associate with the person stabbing and the person being stabbed, that I could have helped, but there again, distance is involved.

    Though my son sees people who have committed suicide and have the backs of their heads missing, he can not understand my problem of PTSD. As his mother, I’ve tried to explain that I am a sensitive person, but I do not show this on the outside. I am loud and readily speak my mind to argumentative levels. He sees me as a vicious person instead of a sensitive person.

    This probably has nothing to do with your article, but since you brought on a flashback, you get my venting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tim Gatewood says:

      Trina, my point was not that seeing someone in trouble automatically obligates you to help. I do think you should IF YOU CAN without serious danger to yourself or those who have prior claims on you (family, kids). Each adult has to decide what level of danger they will subject themselves to in order to help another person — and kids should generally be taught to make that level very low unless it is a younger child they are saving. As this happened when you were a child, you are not responsible for this awful event that you witnessed. I hope and pray that you will receive the help you need to deal with your PTSD.

      My blog post here is really about the lack of adults in politics — how the leadership in both parties seems to be more about playing games than in finding solutions.

      In a broader sense, it is about lack of adults in all the leadership roles in society, as there just seem to be fewer and fewer good role models for anyone to emulate.

      Athletes never made good role models, in my opinion, and not every soldier or sailor or Marine or air force person is a hero — many are just there because their neighborhoods offered no better career choices. We have seen recently how militarized the police have become and how quick many of them are to over-react and use pepper spray and rubber bullets (which can kill or seriously injure) on citizens exercising their Constitutional rights. So, the lack of traditional role models is pretty glaring.


  2. D. A. Adams says:

    I think we’re seeing a tipping point of the rift between the extreme haves and the rest of us. It’s a cycle of history, and we’ll either overcome it peacefully and democratically, or we’ll have a bloody mess in the streets. Either way, there must be a change because things are failing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tim Gatewood says:

      DA, I think you are correct. The over-concentration of wealth & power (even more than income) into fewer and fewer hands is not healthy for a supposedly-democratic society. You can not keep telling the people that we are the government while the government keeps making decisions that favor 1% (or even worse, 1% of the 1%) and the expense of everyone else.

      Sooner or later, the 99% will wake up (or enough of them will, which is all that it takes) — and either the government will break up the corporations (as they once busted up the trusts) and the wealth concentration or something more bloody will result. I am not advocating that, not by any means, but I am saying that America can not continue to be the nation we have been taught it is ONLY on paper — it has to become the land of the free and the home of the brave again.

      What those advocating the status quo fail to consider is that corporations are NOT a free market entity. They only exist because the government set up the means for them to exist and it is up to the government to regulate them or abolish them or revise them as it sees fit. In a truly free market, there would be no copyright and no trademarks and no corporations — just individuals competing with individuals, or associations with associations, and no corporate shield to hide the assets and protect the officers from personal liability. The corporations that have the vast majority of the wealth (assets that produce income) exist only because the government lets them, just as the trusts before them — and the government surely has the power to break them up when they have gotten too big for the good of the country.


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