These Times

I’ll start by saying the views expressed here are solely my own.

I’m struggling this week to write about being a technology coach as I watch the events unfolding in my home country right now.  So I’m taking a knee from writing about my job.  It just doesn’t seem that important right now.

This week I’ve watched as violence erupted in my home state over another police shooting while similar events unfolded in another state as well.  Meanwhile, the man selling apples at the traffic light here in Accra this week tells me how badly he wants to get to America.  He explains to me how much better things will be there for him.  I don’t know how to respond so I just listen.

A friend here has also told me they are concerned about sending their Ghanaian children to the US for university.  Meanwhile friends from the US are constantly imploring me to “stay safe” presumably because Africa is such a dangerous place.

I’ve chosen this life for myself and my family because I believe it provides them with an opportunity to learn and expand their world view.  My kids are celebrating Peace Week next week with their peers from countries around the world.  Some of them are from places that are constantly at war with one another.  Yet right now they are all working together to make peace flags to display in our school.   I have to believe this is because regardless of what history has said or what is happening elsewhere at the moment, they’ve realized it doesn’t matter where someone is from or what they look like.  They’re people. They like to run and play, chew gum, laugh, color and learn. Learn. That’s important isn’t it?

As I watch news clips, I hear and see hate and ignorance plastered across my screens, and my heart hurts.

I don’t know the answer.  I don’t claim to have one.  However, I do believe that only compassion and understanding can lead to better days.  Violence and hate does not fix anything. It oppresses.

So, I’ll continue to seek opportunities for my family to learn and expand their views in hopes that somehow they will be part of the solution for their generation.  And I’ll hope that all of you back home stay safe.