“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”
― Mark Twain, The Innocents Abroad/Roughing It
This restful season, I am yet again reminded of the many dynamics of teaching. Now, perhaps more than ever in my lifetime, we teachers are needed to instill a sense of hope.
As an educator, I remain overjoyed to be working with students, parents and fellow educators who have meaningful life experiences from various points around the globe. This lifestyle is the norm for our students and is becoming the norm for me. I am beginning to realise that I simply do not see the world through the same lens as my fellow Americans anymore.
America has survived The Great Depression, Nazi Germany, Communist Russia, Vietnam, Watergate, Reaganomics, Wall Street’s theft, and the lie that became the Iraq wars. Americans will survive this too.
Alas, during this time of uncertainty and grief, it is time I go back to the basics. It is time to share our school’s good deeds and work ever harder to teach our students empathy coupled with critical thinking skills. I choose to reinvest my time in personal and professional growth. It is how I combat fear.
That said, while living and working overseas, I have yet to meet one person that is pleased about our most recent Presidential election. Not one. I have thrice been asked about the probabilities of WWIII as if it is a foregone conclusion.
After a deep breath, my response, is that more people voted against our President-elect than not. This cannot be overstated. If only millennial voted, there would be barely any red states. I am indebted to the my students’ generation. They will lead us well when I am old.
I remain ever hopeful. Still, I am scared. Let us carry on our good work together.