Women Who Don't Whine, Win
October 07, 2011
By Guest Blogger, Mary Schmidt, Marketing Troubleshooter
BBC: Nobel Peace Prize Recognises Women Rights Activists
This year's Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded jointly to three women - Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberian Leymah Gbowee and Tawakul Karman of Yemen.
Hmmm...Liberia and Yemen. Not exactly easy places to live, much less make a difference. And yet...
The other day, I got a bit cranky on Facebook when reading about one young unemployed woman's problem with her student loans; the longer she doesn't pay them, the more they increase. A legitimate problem - and certainly no fun. (I also had student loans that - gulp - charged interest.) But here's the thing. She took the loans. She got the education. She's still got access to technology. And, to much of the world, she would appear to be incredibly wealthy. (She now walks dogs for $6/hour, according to her post.)
Yes, we've got problems here in the U.S. and who can argue with the sentiments on the sign?
However, the 99% movement also gets on my nerves a bit. Lots and lots of people telling how bad they've got it, and - at least in the photos I've seen - they're all clothed and look well-fed. After awhile, it starts to look suspiciously like - um - whining. Somebody should do something! I agree. However, who is "somebody? abd what is the "something?" How? Where? (I always get hung up on practicalities, dang it.)
Another problem I have with all this is that it's based on a zero-sum economic view. There's a finite amount of "stuff" and in order for one group to have more, another group has to suffer.
If that were really true, entrepreneurs would never get out of bed in the morning, much less keep creating companies and jobs. Do I think it's totally out of whack that some people working on Wall Street can make such obscene amounts of money? Absolutely. But that sort of thing has happened throughout human history; we just now KNOW how the 1% lives. (The peasants would have revolted far sooner if they'd actually seen the inside of the Tsar's palaces. That class warfare didn't turn out very well either; the top people were soon taking a disproportionate share of wealth and sending their "comrades" to prison.)
I'm all for standing up, speaking out and marching...but for something specific. Just as Ms. Gbowee led a march through the Liberian capital, Monrovia, demanding an end to the rape of women by soldiers. Wow. I can't even imagine the guts that took.
Say what you will about the differences in economies, societies and cultures - these three women didn't expect somebody to do something. They simply went out and did it.
Catchy title, excellent point too! It's really all about getting out there, doing what you love, and making a difference instead of complaining about what's wrong with our work, ourselves, our world!
Posted by: Zsa Zsa | October 12, 2011 at 06:00 AM
Thank you. Yes, expecting 'somebody' to do
'something' is like asking your friend to come over and bring 'something' to eat and when she arrives with pig's feet you become angry.
And yes, many of us are well fed and have roofs over our head. The change has to occur with individual, daily change, and then collaborating to create what we want, not just protesting and expecting 'something' to happen.
Thank you for the post Mary.
Posted by: Naima- billiondollarcourage.com | October 07, 2011 at 07:53 PM