December 02, 2019

Look for the helpers

I may be dating myself here (but sometimes that's only date you can get), but I didn't grow up watching Mr. Rogers. If anything, I grew up watching Eddie Murphy's hilarious SNL parody, Mr. Robinson's Neighborhood. My personality and sense of humor inclines in that direction.

Still, I was game when a certain spousal person ordered the DVD of the documentary, Won't You Be My Neighbor?

There's no denying that he had an incredible way of relating to children and helping them deal with all kinds of things. It's quite a contrast to the approach in my family of messing with kids by reading Poe to them before they're ready for it. It's also quite a contrast with the depths we've fallen to in the age of the Orange Bully.

One takeaway point stuck with me that I'd missed somehow, even though it's become viral on the interwebs. It's something Rogers' mother said to him when he was a child:

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, "Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”
Some people find that over simplistic. Here's one critique from The Atlantic.

Personally, I think you could do a lot worse. With the understanding that sometimes the helpers are the hell-raisers.

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