Due my interest following the situation in North Dakota where several indian tribes are trying to stop fracking through sacred land, a powerful and strong feeling of oneness has arised in me lately.
The protectors are well organized and though the US government and corporations stay quiet and even send armed patrols to “control” the protectors, the world is listening. We support them while can feel the age of greed shaking. And through this invention that we found out 20 years ago, it is connecting souls all over the world. Through the internet we can be present witnesses of what mass media is denying to explain.
As a pedagog and mum, yesterday I came to reflect about how much I miss outdoor time with my kids. We like being in contact with nature, we enjoy being out there exploring in the woods without a concrete objective. We just are. Time pauses, we breath in silence.
On Fridays we have this tradition of watching movies in the evening. Last Friday it was my turn to pick a movie, and I chose a film from the webside Films for Action. My oldest son was with me, and he was thrilled to spend some time alone together during the first snowfall of the season.
The film is called “Our Generation” (2010) from Sinem Saban and Damien Curtis. It shows how aboriginal people in the north region of Australia has been mistreated and abused by the Australian authorities, leaving them in poor health conditions as they are denied their own lands, traditions, culture and language.
Our empathic nature
The film is strong, showing how the white majority covers their racism towards Aboriginals accusing them of different penalties. I considered that my children has to see how people you never see otherwise on mass media, are being abused and mistreated. Neglected by the sound of the law of white men.
I spent time during the movie translating for my son, explaining how the Australian government has extortionated the Aboriginals because of their own greed. White people wants their land to start mining, to exploit the resources that trades into money.
My son was moved to tears. He actually said that he couldn’t understand why are Aboriginals being treated in such manners. It actually makes no sense.
I firmly believe that we are empathic of nature despite social Darwinism has controlled Western ideology for centuries, making us believe that we live in a world where the survival of the fittest is an hegemonic rule.
I know that if several people would know about how other human beings are being oppressed and abused, we would react. We would awake. We humans use power to control our own diversity behaving directly againt nature.
Self-worth in diversity, our legacy to children
Since the Industrial Era have we changed our school system from being a luxury reserved to the political, economical and religious elites to be a human right. This is the positive part of it, that in theory all children have the right to be empowered by learning how to read, write and count, helping them to reflect and handle their interaction within the system.
The negative part is that now we are in the extreme where only these skills seem to be valued at school. Politicians and corporations have decided what are the standards and norms for very age, like if our children develops as part of a manufacture to make them to loyal and obedient citizens. Clean products ready to serve the capitalist system.
We have accepted a society where kids have to adapt in searching their own self-worth after their characters at school and how good they are to memorize. Children with other capabilities are naturally excluded, as the vast majority of children are. Our school and social system is build up against a normality that doesn’t exist. If nature is based on diversity and the joy of exactly it, why do we accept a system that wants all the children to be equal? Or even worse, why do we accept the denial of human diversity?
We have lost field trips, art, philosophy, ethics and music in our school systems. We treat our children like machines and then we write one research after the other wondering why there is an increasement of mental disorders and apathy among kids. We try to find logical explanations to the increasement of drop-out and uneasy children in the classrooms. Our children show severe signs of sickness caused by an alienating system. And it is our responsibility ad adults to change this situation upside down.
We have to raise our voice to create a school system-and in extension a new society- based on every person’s self-worth. In a diverse world, both among living and non-living beings, every creature exists because it is needed to maintain our natural balance.
Though humans, with our mechanical explanations, certainly do not value every single living being; each plant, each flower and each animal has a self-worth that makes diversity necessary to our survival. It might be necessary to learn how to read, write and count, but it is much more important to open schools up for diversity among children as a core understanding of being together several hours a day. Giving them room and space to be themselves independently of what they can or what they know, simply because they are worthy for who they are.
Think about it for a moment. If we could turn classrooms into small gardening spaces in order to help our children grow naturally, at their own pace, being there making their exploratory curiosity safe, that could give us the best foundation to create balanced, loving and respectful adults.
Adults that do not have the necessity to misuse others to feel better about themselves. Adults that will follow their moral compass without the necessity of rules or leaders to tell them what to do. When each person feels accepted and loved for who they are, the external conflicts might end. Diversity has to be embraced, exactly because we are within nature.
Children will show us the way
Back to the movie night, I had a little chat with my son when the movie was almost over. I had to go back and pick his brother up at a friend’s house, and he asked me to stop the movie. He had tears in his eyes and he was holding tight to the blanket he had on him.
“How do you feel about the movie” I asked. “It is not nice, mum. Why do they treat Aboriginals that way? How can they just come and take a land that doesn’t belong to anybody?” he replied.
“Well, that is a good question. Greed is the answer. And you are eleven years old now, that means you have many years yet to figure out how you can do something to reverse these kind of abusive behaviours. And don’t forget to get other people to join you along the way”.
Children does not need to be taught about empathy and ethical behavior, that is why we have to treasure our inherent nature and we must stop dehumanizing them through production-based school systems, making diversity unnatural for them.