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Lament Aid Stand

Under a hot summer sun, sweating while at work, looking for anything cool one could always hope for the sanctuary of the quintessential resting place; a lemonade stand in the horizon. Coins brought joy to those serving the simple cup. Nothing refreshed like that cold sip of lemonade amidst the laughter of generations colliding. Both server and served look forward to this moment of solace. Today, however, a past filled with polarized, partisan divides cloud our judgments. Our collisions bring no joy, only damage. Cups now overflow with anger and sorrow. Tears have replaced our laughter.

We offer a small remedy. We offer our own lament aid stand.

To lament, deep expressions of grief and sorrow, is actually good for us. Holding in our sentiments confine the body’s natural means of disposing unwanted emotional baggage. There is a time to weep. When dealing with life’s ups and downs this lament aid stand contends that it is OK to have feelings of distress, sorrow and trouble. As we page through our papers and newsfeeds there is much to be troubled by. Regret is on our horizon. We are here to acknowledge the obvious. Here is our cup, shed a few tears.

One of our most familiar yarns involves the sentiment that “the sky is falling.” This tale came to us by way of Chicken Little. Perhaps it was Henny Penny or Chicken Licken. The familiar storyline threads a moment in time when hysterical mistaken belief attempts to convince those present that imminent disaster lies ahead. Though published in English in the mid-19th century, a similar account can be found in most cultures involving different animals going back thousands of years. The seeds of doom and perilous talk seemingly have been commonplace throughout history. Find solace in that we have been here before. It may not be as bad as we think. Take courage in the fact that the prophet overstated the current condition. Henny Penny was wrong. Here is our cup, the heart is heavy but history encourages us to be hopeful.

Most importantly that lemonade stand empowered the faithful to continue on. A sugar injection provided new energy. So too does our lament aid stand. Our lament should not result in inactivity but energize our resolve to do something. Stand up against your oppressor. Embolden your advocacy. Resistance politics here finds it patron saint in Henry David Thoreau. Called “the apostle of nonconformity,” Thoreau wrote On Civil Disobedience (1849) to alert his neighbors, friends and listeners that current government policy was misguided and ill advised. Whatever your issue, do the same. Alert those in your arena of your dismay. Contact your elected officials. Write a letter to the editor. Take notice and do something about it. Do not simply “cry in your beer.” Thoreau wrote:

“If any think that their influence would be lost there, and their voices no longer afflict the ear of the State, that they would not be as an enemy within its walls, they do not know how much truth is stronger than errors, nor how much more eloquently and effectively he can combat injustice who has experienced a little in his own person. Cast your whole vote, not a strip of paper merely, but your whole influence.”

Do not experience sorrow in vain. Here is our cup, take a stand.

We were expecting you. We all sweat from the stress and anxiety of the day. Welcome to our lament aid stand. It is appropriate to grieve. Buck up there is hope ahead. Take refuge knowing that you can be an agent of change. William James said, “Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.” Time to turn your lament into lament aid.

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"Nothing gives one person so much advantage over another as to remain always cool under all circumstances." T. Jefferson

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