28 May 2011

better together

I read about a study on NPR about different countries and how "tight" they are.
Basically, this guy in the '60s came up with a "tightness scale" that he could rank nations on based on their cultures. So an example of a "tight" country would be Japan, because it has strict social rules and a stratified culture, and an example of a "loose" country would be the US, because we have an easy-going culture and we don't punish people who stray from the norm.
The study said that countries like Singapore, India, and other countries in Asia were on the "tight" end of the scale. Countries like Norway and New Zealand were "loose".
But either way, generally, both groups can meet the needs of their people. Sometimes some countries have access to more than others and sometimes other policies work out better than others, but culturally speaking, we're all pretty self-sufficient. We meet the cultural needs of each other - we stay together as a people. I have never heard of a country breaking up before for bad reasons, other than the Soviet Union, but it took up almost all of the eastern hemisphere so it was almost inevitable. And even though we are all different, we can keep together. And that's pretty cool. We can be really traditional or really progressive and we can still care for each other just the same.
And right now, unity is something we all need. We can never accomplish much by ourselves; well at least nothing really big. And I recently read an interview from a 25 year old woman who just lost her husband in the tornado in Joplin. She said he jumped on top of her to protect her when the twister came, and he died as the tornado passed - he saved his wife.
Not only is her house and her whole town ruined, but her husband, with whom she was going to have a family, is gone.
It's times like these that we need to stay together and help out people in need. We need to turn to each other and help each other out. Now's not the time to turn away and worry about ourselves. It's the time to look into our communities and think about helping others who are in danger, despair, and destruction.
Good bless the victims of the tornado, and the victims of the other tornado in Tuscaloosa, and the tsunami. In fact, God bless every person whose life was taken away by a natural disaster. Hopefully we can get through these things, no matter what our culture or background is, together.

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