“You can please some of the people some of the time. But, you can’t please all of the people all of the time.”’ OK, I paraphrased it. But I think that it is true.
While war rages on into a second decade in the Middle East and hundreds of thousand of people trek hundreds of miles through sometimes hostile countries leaving lands held by there families for thousands of years to find a place to start again, in the United States, those who are sometimes called marginalized are whining so loudly that they are causing the majority to lose sight of real problems. A few years ago, these whiners complained that Columbus Day should no longer be celebrated because Columbus called the Native Americans “Indian”, an inaccurate title which initiated the subjection of Native Americans to the interlopers from Europe. Most recently, groups of Princeton students, and others, claim that because they think that Woodrow Wilson was a raciest, the name of the Law school in that institution named for that President of the Untied States, should be changed.
Who are these people? Have they done anything noteworthy? Have any of them led a blameless, or sinless life? Even those whom we call saints were not perfect. Many of our heroes have feet of clay. Does that make them any less heroic? Many of these whiners are very young. It isn’t that they are so idealistic. It is that for some reason, they expect everybody else to bow to there whims. They expect everyone else to take away what ever it is that bothers them, important or not. Peter Gray says that “declining student resistance” is demonstrated the tremendous increase in emergency calls by university students apparently having emotional crises over the problems of everyday life. These whiners are of all races, creeds and colors.
Since WWII, as a society we have removed centuries old social stigmas against unwed mothers, persons of color, homosexuals, and, most recently, transgender persons. The hoped for result was a nation free to embrace and help each other become the best that each citizen can be. But, when a student at a religious college complains that he/she had to sit and listen to a homily on love, no wonder the president of that college exclaimed, “This is not a day-care! This is a university.” Young people have become more narcissistic and self-
absorbed than ever. They do not believe in a purpose driven life that respects the Unknown and loves its neighbor as itself. Maybe it is time for the grown-ups in the world insist that the teen-agers in the family sit down to supper with the rest of the family; that they come on vacation with their younger siblings; that they visit their grand-parents and that they accompany the family to church, synagogue or mosque regularly. Of course, if the grown-ups don’t do those things, what do we expect? Young people need a moral code. For better or worse, for millennium, the Judeo-Christian tradition has given human kind a purpose. With only our personal self satisfaction, we become whiners.