Wednesday, December 19, 2012

27 Acts for Newtown

Hey Peeps,

The general feeling I've noticed people are left with since last Friday's shooting (aside from overwhelming sadness) is one of powerlessness. Sometimes it feels like there's nothing we can do to make a difference in our world. I've taken to Twitter to be a vocal advocate for gun control as a first step, to be followed by examining and finding a solution for the issues of mental health and poverty which play a part in these massacres. And while I feel being an advocate on this front is crucial, it doesn't often make me feel better.

What Winnipeg Mom Christine McIntyre is doing, however, has TRULY lifted my spirits. She's launched a group and an initiative called "27 Acts for Newton" whereby she honors each of the 27 victims of last Friday's shooting by extending 27 acts of kindness in her everyday life to people with whom she might not have connected otherwise.

When I read about this, the Pollyanna in me immediately began to resurface. I felt a shift. I can't change what happened. But as I shared yesterday, this simple act of love from one person has reminded me that kindness is powerful and that every single person can, in doing one small thing, create a ripple effect beginning with a shift within themselves, their families, their communities and the world.

If you feel inspired to join in, please do. They post great ideas for gestures of kindness on the "27 Acts for Newtown" Facebook event page and if you read some of them when you're feeling down, it can change the course of your day. Which is, mercifully, the whole point.

I believe in my heart that we can make a difference. Let's spread the word. Let's help the media re-focus on this instead. Share this on Facebook, Twitter and in conversation with your friends and family.

One small act, times 27. And we transform our sorrow into a legacy of kindness and love. I know in my Ukrainian bones this will find its way to those grieving in Newtown.

Pass it on.

If you are reading this, whether I know you well or not, I love the socks offa you.

Merry Christmas my beloveds. I'm having a George Bailey moment.
And my faith in humanity has been restored.


Thank you for joining me in my quest for bliss,

The Happiness Detective

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Gun Control and Mental Illness

Gun control first.

Mental Health (and health in the USA overall) next. And by next, I do mean now. When I read this article, I likened this Mom's struggle during her son's knife attack to the whole gun control issue in the USA overall. When he threatened to kill her and his siblings, she didn't stop to address his mental health issue first. She first contained him and collected the knives in the house to prevent him from harming her and others. Then she addressed his health issue.
That's how I see it overall. Take the guns away from everyone in the USA, including those who suffer from mental health illness, to prevent them from harming others. Then address the health issues immediately and ongoing.

And, from my perspective, poverty vs the 1% factors into this as well. I understand this latest shooting happened in an affluent community but overall, when the 1% keeps the wealth to themselves for the sole purpose of creating more wealth FOR themselves, the masses go without essentials, which in this case includes serious and meaningful health care for mental illness.

I want these children's lives, cut down so brutally, so tragically and so prematurely, to mean something. If that something is change now to troubling issues that should have been properly addressed long ago (gun control, poverty and health care), then their lives lost are still too high a price to pay. But to do nothing, or something that is miniscule in scope would be to have let them died in vain.

I'm talking to you Congress and NRA. You can be humane or you can ignore this issue in order to make more money.

But you can't do both.


Let the shooter only be known for the change that comes in the USA. 

Please remember these people by name:

Sending light and love in troubled times.
Something meaningful must come from this.

The Happiness Detective