There is a function on Apple computers, at least it’s on my iMac, that is called “Force Quit.” It is similar to the old combo of “Control-Alt-Delete” found on most PCs. I really like Force Quit (FQ) because it takes no prisoners. Whatever you instruct FQ to shut down, it immediately terminates the program–Bam! No questions asked. It is the ultimate “go to time-out” button and if you are the entity on whose behalf FQ was activated, well then, you may as well immediately surrender, grab your stuff and get out. Force Quit…it’s a force to be reckoned with!
Right now, the world is in such chaos I wish I had a huge, earth-wide Force Quit button I could push and everyone and everything would simply shut down. The political divisiveness in America would pause; the random mass shootings at retail stores and schools across the USA would cease; those guiltless phone calls threatening you with an IRS investigation wouldn’t interrupt your day; teargas and bricks would no longer be the exchange currency in Hong Kong; the energy it takes to initiate all the unfair and unnecessary mistreatment of refugees and immigrants around the world would turn positive and begin building new relationships and locations where all these people could finally call home. The list goes on. It is sad that it is such a long one. Just as one generation deals with all its dilemmas–few of which ever get resolved–along comes the next set of offspring and their bag of disasters. This culture has truly become the circle of life on our little planet. It needs one of us to push the Force Quit button and disrupt its orbit.
Human beings are an odd lot. We are capable of performing incredible acts of kindness and generosity; we can instruct a little wheeled cart to land on Mars and send us photographs of its travels; we can build all kinds of useful structures in which to live and work; we can learn ways to alleviate pain and disease. Fact is, humans can do most anything if they put their minds to it. What we can’t seem to do is get rid of our ugliness–all those evil, vengeful, selfish, hateful things we do to each other. It is a puzzlement how we can be so good and so bad at the same time.
I do not think there is an answer to this riddle. I think we are who we are and parents, teachers, the clergy and society as a whole do not have the influence on us that we all think they do…or wish they did. I was just reading about the new Tom Hanks movie about Mr. Rogers. When I first heard this movie was in the making it wasn’t on my list of things to do, but now that I’ve read a little more about it, it seems the entire world should buy a ticket and go see it. I doubt Mr. Rogers would ever push the Force Quit button. Days in his neighborhood were always beautiful and I think he had a lot to do with that.