An American teen makes the decision to drink and ride with those chose to drink and drive. He probably thought he was having a bit of fun, that every teen drinks, that no one would get hurt. There would be no negative consequences. What difference would it make to any one but him?
The car crashed. He died and the ripples, the consequences, of his thoughtless actions continue today. A business lost it’s license. A family was broken with grief, a grief that didn’t need to be. A brother’s life was changed forever.
A parent decides its OK to leave his family and his children. He never realizes that the consequences of his selfish actions may lead his daughter to never trust men, never know what a stable home is and who may seek love in all the wrong places. The daughter may struggle with self-esteem all her life because her father didn’t consider the long-term consequences of his actions.
A parent never says a good thing to her child. No matter what the child does, it isn’t good enough. The child is ridiculed, put down, made small by the words and actions of the parent. The child may end up rebelling into violent retaliation or fade away into the forgetfulness of drugs and alcohol. The parent never considered the long-term consequences of the barrage of negative words.
What we do has consequences, not just for the moment, but long-term consequences, many of which we can only be vaguely aware. Positive actions and words of encouragement lift up, bring joy and respect. Negative words and actions tear down, depress and bring disrespect to all parties.
For months, President (and before that, candidate) Obama jetted all over the world. At every turn, President Obama cast America in light of monstrous aggressor, whose myriad of crimes could only be mitigated and changed by a new Obama administration.
President Obama didn’t talk about how America provides (both from government and private sources) assistance at every disaster financially and personally. President Obama didn’t point out the lives we saved by coming to the aid of Europe during war time, or how without us, Hitler would have owned most of the world.
President Obama didn’t talk about how America has protected and provided and when all said and done, did not seek revenge or how much America has forgiven in debt to most free nations of the world. Instead President Obama kept twisting the American story until Americans appeared little more than thugs and violent degenerates out to destroy the world.
Actions and words have consequences. Overseas our military personal die, while President Obama dithers about sending help. Instead President Obama makes the round of talk shows.
Is it then any wonder that the Olympic committee didn’t seriously consider the United States of America as a serious bid for the Olympics? A president who has shown his disdain for his own country and for his high office, shouldn’t be surprised when others agree with him.
It is a lesson I hope President Obama and his advisors learn. It is a lesson, we all need to learn. It is about thinking beyond the scope of what we want today to the long-term consequences and who else might be hurt by our actions and words.