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Letters to the Editor

May 10, 2009

Don't choose the low life



To the editor:

I began life in a time when a horse would stop at our house and a man would deliver our daily supply of milk. Then, without being told, it would skip homes until it came to the next customer. That slow pace may explain why I can't keep pace with the youth of today.

Traditionally, a period of irresponsibility is considered proper and expected during the late teen years. For 16 years you are restricted from activities considered reserved for adults. You look forward to challenging these restrictions. Things considered "adult" are tested. The use of alcohol, drugs, promiscuous sex, vulgar speech, reduced inhibition and excessiveness become rampant among those leaving high school under the guise of growing up.

But these are not really adult behaviors. They are, in fact, activities that mature persons recognize as detrimental to a good lifestyle.

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Enormous profits are made by those who promote the aforementioned things. Their main marketing strategy is to attack the self esteem of potential customers. It is vital to convince individuals that nature short changed them; that only by bolstering them with the purveyor's product can they keep up with the crowd.

True, most teens outgrow this experimental stage, but the consequences of those who continue the low life must be paid.

This tradition is not going to be changed by parents, teachers, clergy, etc. We have accepted this behavior for centuries. We have been conditioned to think of it as normal.

So, if this mindset is to be changed, it must come from a segment of society that has common interest and enough self-esteem to resist being enticed into a lifestyle that rewards the low life and punishes the clean life.

High school editors and drama classes have the means to communicate with and to share opinions with their peers. Popular students who are looked to as role models have the power to set the lifestyles that will dominate when higher learning is approached.

Where you spend time, where you shop, what you buy and who you support are all things under your control. It will be your endeavors and your money that can make or break a commodity or business. Most important, you can set standards that are not subject to those of the crowd.

You may deny that "adult" actually means self-gratification and go with the flow, or you can promote those things that bring pleasure and prosperity to the community as a whole.

Your late teens are a time when you owe no favors, you have few deadlines to meet and you have the time to pursue new avenues.

Especially now, you have the means to quickly and widely share your thoughts and opinions electronically. You have fresh minds. Use them. Make your generation the really greatest generation.

F. Burkett
Williamsport




A tribute to mothers



To the editor:

My mother was smart, funny and very beautiful. She also was quiet, humble and never complained. She was a woman with great faith in God, but very private in her beliefs. She gave up a career to marry my father and raise eight children, and her own amazing talents were set aside in order to do for others. She, like so many women years ago, made motherhood her full-time job.

Most women today must work because the economy demands it. Times have changed since my mother hung dozens of diapers outside on a clothesline to dry, all the while singing bits from operas she admired, or dreaming of archaeological digs she longed to visit. Young mothers today may have more stress with shuffling family and careers, but definitely have greater opportunities to fulfill their own dreams and desires as well.

We take one day a year to celebrate Mother's Day, but these champions who were chosen to carry lives into the world should always be honored.

By my mother's own unselfish act of putting her children before all else, I made a vow to myself on the day she was buried. I would use all the gifts God had placed within my heart, to change a little piece of the world while I was here, because she had given up so much for me. This is my tribute to mother.

To all the mothers, and precious grandmothers, may you have a happy Mother's Day.

Kate Prado
Hagerstown

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