Archive for July, 2014|Monthly archive page

You are responsible for your own actions.

No one made you do anything.

Provocations don’t absolve you. Neither do the standards set by others.

Your good intentions are worthless, except…maybe…to those who love you (and that still doesn’t absolve you).

It doesn’t matter that you could have done something worse.

You, and only you, are ultimately responsible for your actions. None of the thousands of creative excuses we’ve come up with are going to get you out of that, not “it’s just a joke”, not “look what they made me do”, not “I didn’t mean it”, not “it wasn’t supposed to turn out this way”, not “you don’t understand what I’ve been through”. None of it.

Not even “that’s what I was told to do”. Especially not that.

Take your responsibility. Seize it.

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I don’t know how much longer we can coddle you

I know this is hard. Examining your flaws. Accepting that you can be wrong. Seeing that other people’s pain is your pain, just as other people’s joy can be your joy.

Especially if, like me, you were basically born on second base and told you hit a double. If you came to believe that everything could be yours if you just thought hard enough. If you were left with so few coping skills for situations that didn’t yield to your grade-school analysis.

Oh, believe me I know it’s hard. I fail at it so often. Because hate is a hell of a drug, isn’t it? It’s so easy to let it take you and come out swinging, to replace doing right with being right, and then mistake being right with winning the argument.

But the thing is…I don’t think we have a lot of time. I don’t think we can afford the luxury of failing in this much longer.

I think we need you…you, me, all of us…to figure this out right now: “What happens to other people, happens to me.”

I think this may be a matter of survival.

What does it mean to be Canadian?

Happy Canada Day, once again! Our nation has survived another year, so let’s ask ourselves: what does it mean to be Canadian?

It’s a joke question, in so many ways. Half the time, when someone asks they’re trying to sell you beer. We’re a country that’s frequently content to coast along without much introspection, and most of the time that’s worked fine.

I think, however, that the time for introspection has come. We need to ask ourselves what it means to be Canadian, because if we don’t even try to find the answer someone else will happily answer in our name. That if nothing else is the lesson of the past few years in Canada, as politicians at every level have climbed over each other to speak for us.

Do you like what they’re saying?

If not, do you think another politician is going to come along and say anything better?

I hope you’re having a great time today, with people you love. There’s not much better than a good barbecue. But I also hope that the country outside your yard is a country that you love. And that your voice will be heard.