All writing is a form of prayer - John Keats

Saturday, September 23, 2017

It's time to listen!

“Most of the successful people I’ve known are the ones who do more listening than talking.”
― Bernard M. Baruch

I wish our President could grasp this common-sense approach.

In another of his infamous adlibs, while speaking in a political campaign rally in Alabama yesterday, he asked the audience if they’d “love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, he’s fired?’”

We all know what he’s talking about. It all began when a well-known player took a knee during the national anthem before games last year to protest police brutality and racial injustice.

I’m not going to get in the middle of the argument about the national anthem…I’m getting on the case of people who refuse to listen.

We struggle with this every day. A Michigan prison warden was so upset that I brought in the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate multiple claims of abuse of mentally deranged prisoners that he chose to ban me from giving a speech at his facility. Sorry, but the man didn’t get the point. By calling in the DOJ I wasn’t questioning his personal integrity…I was begging for change in the shameful way we treat our mentally ill inmates. He wasn’t listening.

The Michigan Department of Corrections has chosen to punish all kinds of guys who have been involved in demonstrations. These inmates weren’t trying to get deeper into trouble…they’ve got enough already. They were trying to point out serious problems like bad food. They didn’t get the changes they sought. Instead, they got transfers, tickets, changes in housing levels…retaliation was strong and prompt. The department wasn’t listening.

People are protesting national issues more than ever before, especially issues involving health care. Yet, our leaders continue to propose plans that have the endorsement of NO major medical organization in the nation. They aren’t listening.

It’s time to be quiet. Time to take a deep breath. Time to smell flowers. Time to meditate. Time to pray. Time, especially, to consider the needs and problems of others.

All noise is waste.  So cultivate quietness in your speech, in your thoughts, in your emotions. Speak habitually low.  Wait for attention and then your low words will be charged with dynamite.  ~Elbert Hubbard


Ali Garrison said...

Thank you for this, dear Doug. I am listening, and I so appreciate your work. Being in Nature, making Music and connecting to Our Divine teaches us to listen. Our systems do very little to protect or nourish this, so it's left up to conscious individuals/groups to organize, teach and influence. I suppose it has always been thus. Much love and strength and perseverance. ~ Ali Garrison

Robert Bulten said...

Thanks, Doug. In our self centered egotistical selves we are all into talking rather than listening. Wouldn't it be wonderful if our MDOC would seriously listen to the aweful, legitimate living conditions, health issues, disrespectful and humiliating treatment by staff and start treating our inmates like the men and women created in God's image that they are and even though they have committed crimes against people and society they still have inestimible worth in God's sight? Bob Bulten