If we, as a society, are unable to accept the fact that there are consequences to our actions – specifically those actions that do harm to others – then we are doomed to be overrun by damaged people. Like the mob that stormed Congress on Jan 6 in an attempt to overthrow our government. Man boychilds who were physically, emotionally, psychologically, intellectually and/or spiritually abused, lashing out at the Ultimate Authority Figures embodied by our government to seek redress. Only they are too broken to even recognize that’s what they were doing.
And so are most of us if we fail to recognize it.
Whenever I hear someone say, “I had (this bad thing or that) happen to me as a kid, and I’m not a criminal hell bent on smashing the system, or a homeless addict,” or any variation on that theme, my first thought is how blind they are to how broken their life actually is. Those who admit that the Adverse Childhood Events (ACEs) they endured have had long-term negative effects on them tend to do better in life, but only when they’ve sought out and secured professional help.
What professional help has there been for an entire demographic that suffered every form of abuse there is at the hands of colonizers corrupted by greed? Our history includes the genocidal annihilation of the cultural identity of an entire demographic. You can’t just say that was then, this is now and tell the progeny of that genocide to get over it. That’s not how it works. Our failure to recognize and admit to ourselves that there are far-reaching, generational consequences to the harm done to that demographic is a weakness of our collective character. And the argument against teaching Critical Race Theory is proof.
The same goes for teaching Critical ACE Theory. Which we’ve never done because we’re too busy defending the barbaric things we do to children and insisting it didn’t do us any harm, so they just need to get over it.