Tucson CitizenTucson Citizen

U.S., we have it better than many

Guest Writer
Teen columnist

You don’t need a 16-year-old to tell you times are tough. Signs of economic hardship are everywhere – education budget cuts, soaring unemployment rate, even the closing of this and many newspapers nationwide.

While it seems as if the world as we know it is ending, or at least changing dramatically, it’s important to keep things in perspective.

I recently read an article on how many cases of genocide there have been that have gone largely unnoticed or unpublicized.

In addition to the well-known tragedies of the Holocaust and Rwanda, six genocides were listed. Six!

No one in America is being persecuted, murdered or both in huge numbers because of their religion, race, gender or ethnicity. America has always been a great place to be, even in times of crisis.

An important thing to relish right now is the fact that we have a republic. Millions of people are stuck in oppressive political, economic and militaristic situations with no relief in sight.

We are not a dictatorship. We have a voice in what happens next.

My grandmother told stories of life during the Great Depression – in which her family couldn’t afford the nickel it cost to ride the trolley into town, so her father had to walk downtown to look for work.

For a week or more at a time, all they had to eat was oatmeal.

We all can take a deep breath and know this isn’t the situation for very many Americans.

People have lost jobs. People have pared down and re-evaluated their style of living and are adjusting to new limitations on their financial capabilities.

And while adults moan and groan about what’s happened to their retirement savings, think about the percentage of people around the world who never have the chance to save for retirement, who never have the chance to retire.

Living “the simple life” is not a new idea, but it has become all the more appealing in light of recent events.

This time of crisis and financial trouble has caused nearly everyone to step back and evaluate the way they are living.

Many families won’t be taking a traditional vacation to the beach or buying that new Prius.

And although money problems almost always amount to family stress, struggles also bring people together.

Sitting down and talking to your grandpa is free. Learning how to play solitaire or knit a sweater is free.

Americans can change this unfortunate turn of economics into a chance to improve themselves and their relationships, becoming more self-sufficient.

Spending less time at the mall and the movie theater can teach us not only how to entertain ourselves in more sustaining ways, but also help us to reconnect with the long lost art of connecting with others.

Leigh Jensen is a sophomore at Canyon del Oro High School.

E-mail: leighajensen@gmail.com

Our Digital Archive

This blog page archives the entire digital archive of the Tucson Citizen from 1993 to 2009. It was gleaned from a database that was not intended to be displayed as a public web archive. Therefore, some of the text in some stories displays a little oddly. Also, this database did not contain any links to photos, so though the archive contains numerous captions for photos, there are no links to any of those photos.

There are more than 230,000 articles in this archive.

In TucsonCitizen.com Morgue, Part 1, we have preserved the Tucson Citizen newspaper's web archive from 2006 to 2009. To view those stories (all of which are duplicated here) go to Morgue Part 1

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