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The Madera Tribune

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Opinion: Looking for that new norm

August 24, 2019

When things change and circumstances evolve, what happens afterwards become known as the “new norm.”

 

After the suicide bombers’ terrorist attacks on the Pentagon and the World Trade Center Sept. 11, 2001 the acceleration in security at the nation’s airports became everyday life for air travelers. Those who travel frequently for work, crisscrossing the country as a part of their jobs, are forced to learn ways to make the experiences less time consuming.

 

These tactics include placing all metal objects in carry-on luggage while it goes through the x-ray machine. Many carry their identification card worn on a lanyard around their neck so it is readily available when presented to the various security and airline personnel.

 

If time is of the essence, waiting in line at the carousel for checked baggage to arrive is time consuming. Travel light and use a carry-on is the best advice.

 

There was a time when families and friends could gather near the gate to welcome or say farewell to passengers.

 

The last time I flew to Nashville the public was prohibited from proceeding any further down the gangway than the outer gate.

 

If these additional procedures stop even one terrorist from planting a bomb on the airliner it is worth the inconvenience.

 

The masses are often punished for the actions of the few.

 

It is the same with gun control laws. Taking weapons away from law-abiding citizens makes about as much sense as practicing birth control because your neighbor has too many children.

 

The three-day waiting (or cooling-off) period has been in effect in California for many years.

 

Background checks including the review of one’s mental health history have been discussed. People suffering from depression could be prohibited from purchasing weapons for fear they might turn the gun on themselves or on whomever is the cause of their depression.

 

Many people who commit suicide do so because they are in pain, sometimes physically, sometimes emotionally. They might choose a permanent solution to what could be a temporary situation. It would seem they give little consideration to the many people they leave behind.

 

The recognized five stages of grief are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and finally acceptance.

 

When a loved one dies the first of these come into play.

 

“Oh no, it can’t be. They had so much to live for,” is a universal lament. The second stage, anger as a way to cope with a sad situation, gives the mourner a release from the sorrow that envelops that spot in one’s heart where the dead still occupies. Next comes bargaining. “Please God don’t take my dear one away from me.” The final stage of grieving is acceptance. Eventually we must all accept that someone we loved deeply has travelled to the great beyond. Religion has its theory on what happens when this life is over.

 

Some believe in a glorious place in the clouds where there is no more pain. A place where we join all the people we love who have gone before us. Some also profess to believe in a burning place where a person is punished for all the terrible acts committed when alive.

 

I tend to believe the true after-death experience is somehow a combination of the two.

 

In John 14:6 the New Testament quotes Christ as having said “I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me.”

 

The cynically blasphemous me believes that telling his followers this story was a way to promote Christianity.

 

Sure you can get into heaven by being a generous person and serving your fellow man. Doesn’t sound like any of the parables I learned in Vacation Bible School.

 

Being a good person is important but so the religious folks believe there is church doctrine

The truth is no one alive knows what happens to us after that last heartbeat. Do we evaporate into nothing or as the mystics and psychics believe death is just the next step in life’s adventure.

 

If needed the phone number for the Suicide Prevention hotline is (800)-273-8255. Don’t embrace a permanent solution for what may well be temporary circumstances. Get help, if not for yourself, to save your loved ones from pain.

 

Long days and pleasant nights, and, have a great weekend.

 

• • •

 

Readers may contact Tami Jo Nix by emailing tamijonix@gmail.com or following@TamiJoNix on Twitter.

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