Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell is getting run into the ground for his comment about a "Nation of Wusses", referring to the postponement of his beloved Eagles game. Here is something you won't hear me say very often, so you might want to write this down: I agree with Ed Rendell.
* Editors note: Love the "No crying in Baseball" line...
Now I don't want to get into an argument about whether or not the Eagles game was postponed due to concerns for the "fans" safety...I understand what the NFL was thinking, I just disagree with them.
But what this is really about is a much larger problem than whether or not Eagles fans have the cojones to deal with a foot of snow...the question is Can we as Americans 'deal" with Anything?
This first came up a while back in a discussion with my sister, and other half of my brain. She brought up the recent rash of suicides that were appearing in clusters at the time. While obviously the Suicides were tragic, she was concerned that the 'trend' was just starting as we were dealing with an entire generation of Americans that have Zero coping skills.
This is what happens when everyone always wins a trophy and No one is a loser. You end up with adults that never learned to over come adversity. Schools are operating the 'Stop the Bullying" campaigns all over the country. But does anyone ever remember those being necessary when we were in school? No. Because either you stood up to them or you got your ass kicked and they moved on to their next prey and a job at the gas station. While you went on to write the great American Novel about over coming adversity. See What I mean? That might not exactly be the story, but you get the gist....
This generation won't have the great Americans who have inspired us, instead of reading about the great Condi Rice who went from a black girl from Alabama to Secretary of State. Who will lead this generation of black leaders that Actually have the people in Mind...and No Spike Lee, you don't count. Where is Dr. King where is Malcolm X. Two men who saw the world differently but wanted the same equality. And near the end X sounded a lot more like Dr. King than the poor excuse for a human Louis Fharakan. Who will show the heroics of John McCain and George H. W. Bush? They won't understand how Bill Gates and Steve Jobs started in a dorm room and a garage respectively.
Because they'll be too busy whinning to their shrinks about how 'difficult' their High School years were and how having a Job is 'really, really hard'. I don't know about you but I can't imagine Bill Gates was Mr. Popularity in High School....and seemed to turn out Okay.
Learning to over come or at the very least deal with adversity as a child is key into developing into a healthy well adjusted adult. Why? Because bad Things happen to everyone, all the time. And it helps if you have some clue how to handle it.
Now I don't mean to say that I condone 'bullying' or more to the point beatings, stabbings and the like...in fact just for clarification consider this my official condemnation: "No one Should Beat, Stab, or Kill Anyone simply because they don't like them for one reason or another". (This rule applies to so called-adults as well.)
But Kids do need to learn that in games as in life there are Winners and Losers. And that some people are talented in one area, but struggle in another. It's the way of the world and it's worked until the last 20-30 years when we decided that children could be damaged for life if we criticised them or encouraged them to strive for excellence. Ask any Division One athlete who pushed them the most? Number One Answer on the Board: Dad, Mom, Family or any combination of the three. Did some of these athletes struggle academically, probably....but they Over came that to be successful in something in which they did excel.
Now I must move onto those in the gay community. Please refer to my earlier condemnation and allow me to add this: Gay children need to have a safe place to go, whether that be to a parent, friend or guidance counselor if they are experiencing any bullying over their Sexual preference. Having said that, these resources should help the child to develop defense mechanisms that work for the child and Not against them. Is that really that hard? Because while Homosexuality has become significantly more mainstream than ever, it is a life style that at some point will draw ridicule from some Ignorant Homophobic Jackass. So Why not prepare them for that?
You're looking at a generation that in it's life time has been through multiple wars and conflicts, which resulted in Zero Rationing of anything from Sugar to Gasoline. Something no other generation could say before...and yet they whine when they beat their $60 video game in their $350 console,on their $3500 television set in less than two weeks.
We've got kids who have no desire to get a driver's license, I can remember counting the days until I could get my permit, so on the day I turned 16 I could get my license. But you know what I failed my permit the first time, why because I didn't think I Really needed to read the book. But after a good long lecture from my Dad, and an awesome Sub. I went home read the book, studied it and passed with flying colors on my next attempt. When it came time to take the drivers portion I was ready. I had prepared, because I had failed before and I didn't like that feeling, nor did I wish to repeat it. And I didn't. Passed the drivers exam on the first go round. I was so excited I forgot to take the keys out of the ignition...a fact the kind officer overlooked.
So getting your permit is a little thing, but that's where it starts. The little things. If a child can't learn to cope with the little things in life, How could we ever expect them to Rise to the Challenge when the Big things hit them square in the face?
We've got a problem folks We are becoming a Nation of Wusses and you know it's bad when Rendell and I are on the same side of any argument.