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How We Cope In Times of Stress

By Remy Benoit

   I came upon an interesting article in the Washington Post this morning by Jackie Spinner about "Flash Mobs."

   I recall "Be-Ins," "Sit-Ins," massive protests and demonstrations.

   Flash Mobs seem to be a new twist, a new way of expressing stress, societal fragmentation.
   In a time when I increasingly hear young people talking about living abroad as expatriots, this Flash Mob craze appears to be indicative of some basic needs not being filled.

   The "Mobs," seem to be young, educated, twenty-somethings. These are not kids looking to just stir up some action, break the monotony of the day to day.  These are adults making their own statements, even if people don't seem to understand what they are. They will  have to tell us what they are looking for, what needs are not being met.

   Over the years we have removed our young, often from pre-school age, or literally just post-natal,  from the "tribe" while mom and dad work, usually both out of necessity.

   But we have gone further than necessity with that removal. My personal quirky outrage in this removal is wedding invitations that specifically say "No children."  From what was once a community event, a  village or town celebration, we are saying to them, you are not invited, you are not of us. Sure, weddings can be outrageously  expensive, but that like all else is a choice. There are still alternatives:, home, garden, beach, mountain top, whatever where children can  learn to dance, sing, and feel a part of life's precious moments.

   With most coming of age ceremonies being left in the dust of history, it is understandable that our children form their own tribes. And then we claim to not understand them; often to condemn them and what to us seem their outrageous garbs, hairstyles, rituals. If we do not pass along their history, their sense of place, because we have separated them in so many ways from their  "village" what else can we expect of them than that they  try to make their own statements.

   Join Jackie Spinner and the Washington Post at: A Fast-Moving Fad Comes Slowly to Washington 'Flash Mobs' Gather, Just Because.

   Somewhere along the line today, hug a child, give a smile to a teen, recognize a young person, or an old person, and make a difference in their lives.

   We were all young once ( remember how tough it was?) ; we will all, if we are blessed, live to be old.

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This item is part of WelcomeHomeSoldier.com: historian, author, editor, and educator Remy Benoit's ongoing weblog for Veterans, writers, students, and others who believe in learning from and making history; including thousands of articles and posts and the free writing seminar, Using History for Healing and Writing.


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