There is a proverb that I particularly like: instead of cursing the darkness – light a candle!
November is the Thanksgiving Month for me. Gratitude is a noble feature of character. But when it comes to Intellectual Propriety the failure to attribute the ideas to the source, to trace the citation to the author – is not only a sin but a punishable infringement as well. Paying tribute was a ritual practised with piety among the members of a community. Not a community by simple contiguity or by arbitrary fellowship – but through professional, spiritual commitment to a very fragile and the most complex object of study – human mind, and the technical aspect of its functioning. I mean, I watched four brilliant presentations within the British Psychology Society annual conference 2013 (an archive excerpt from it): Professor Peter McGill’s on Challenging behaviour, learning disability with Positive Behaviour Support (PBS); Professor Chris Oliver’s presentation on Challenging behaviour and intellectual disability; Professor Matt Sanders’ presentation on Enhancing the impact of evidence-based parenting and family interventions, and Professor Glynis Murphy’s lecture on people with learning disabilities from within the justice system. This was not meant to be a statement as such nor a claim, but it, I acknowledge, inspired me to have an insight into other situations at personal, family environment and society at large level as well. For instance, Prof. Peter McGill referred to challenging behaviour as a cause and effect for learning disability. The learning disability is caused by innate factors, genetic data, some existing disorders, limitations, impairments, illnesses – pain, but also by objective factors of the environment, the family conditions, abuse, traumatic events especially if of duration; or school environment: bullying, discrimination, injustice. The professor’s conclusion is that systematic behaviour conditioning and building positive behaviour models, enforcing them and maintaining them in the long run would improve the situation if not present an ultimate solution. Referring to the concept of institutionalization of mind he places a great emphasis on institutions, he delegates to the school a great deal of sustained efforts to remediate the situation, to enclose enframe with care, not to cowardly delegate attribution to the family or subject’s health problems, but assume accountability and address the issue: build systemically Positive Behaviour as a solution and future prevention. Intellectual disability by contrast, is more serious than learning disability, which is a clinical case, a case of several genetic syndromes present and serious health problems, constant pain, but also, again a vicious circle non-communication of those existent problems. In the latter case detecting, diagnosing the illness and addressing it, treatment, would be a first step, then the rest the above mentioned.
The recent landslide victory in Romanian presidential elections of the former Mayor of Sibiu (cultural capital of Romania) – Klaus Iohannis of German descent was a great surprise for the entire Europe. The favourite in the electoral race was the Prime Minister in office Victor Ponta. There was a complete puzzle of how a dark horse, a totally unknown person at the national level, a local leader during the two final weeks of overtime, the duelling after several other candidates were left out, could win the hearts and votes of the Romanian people. I have read a sociological evaluation of the masses behaviour, street’s reaction prompted by the tornado in the social networks, caused by the discontent of the voters in the Diaspora, who could not have access to vote because lack of organization, few polling stations and closure at an early hour. They put the blame on ill-intent disorganization, not wishing to have their votes, exclusion from the decision-making process they charged heavily the current administration, they penalized Ponta for everything! for maybe not exactly his fault, because of a dysfunctional system. I even suspected the vested interest of the still current president, his machiavelic plan to prevent Ponta his constant fierce opponent to win, they say Iohannis is his advanced disciple in the campaign. It is also true that the administration have neglected these important details, maybe were not prepared to have such an activism, an institutional, technical failure which was magnified and amplified by the social networks. The sociologists assert that could be a last minute decision of the masses, an escalating problem that translated into a revenge vote for the weaker candidate with reduced chances.
The trigger of the deinstitutionalized, uprooted masses abroad, (an impressive number of nationals), against the sluggish machine of bureaucracy, the administration that is not willing to take up responsibility, that ignored them, that wanted maybe on purpose to deny their right to vote, exclusion. Others say that was a politically motivated vote, people voted against the party that inherited, at least by its symbolism and denomination the communist past. In my view the masses have been manipulated nevertheless, by an e- anarchy, by a social networks virus, disinformed, again used by some concealed, masked players with not any solid grounds for winning the Presidency! but game strategy in use. Sadly enough, this was another Tweeter revolution.
Conversely, I look at the Immigration reform billed by the President of the USA Barack Obama, he confronted again the entire system not only the opposition by this project, as crucial as the Affordable Care Act another very responsible move by him. Barack Obama is going to enter history as a very willful leader, stronger than the presidents that had waged wars not very successful ones, but still earned credit from certain groups and layers of the society. So what he does is give the foreigners a chance, relief from deportation, work permits, possibility to gradually integrate constructively, he would deport only thugs as he declared. Institutionalization of tens of thousands of illegal immigrants implies an act of good will and courage, a humanitarian mark and pragmatism. Think of the benefits for those that would dispose! Nobody is left behind nor aside, everybody deserving it, would be covered! Resistance from the system is unavoidable but if he succeeds, he KOs his negative record in the mid-terms and scores the highest with no precedent in the new millennium era in achieving his Presidential agenda. He did not annex through fraud new territories he adopted, adjusted institutionalized.
At the individual level not only apathy or pure resilience prevents an individual from personal development. Fears, scare, after a specific type of institutionalization, the soviet type, some find it more difficult to adapt, they are waiting for input, for instructions. Some are flinging into opposite of what the system that brought them up offered to them, from the conditions of the previous regime – dealing into hooliganism, revolt, disobedience to the rules, harassment, constantly breaking the rules, resistance, opposition is their stand.
I lit a candle, to pray for those who impacted me but have already joined God; I am profoundly grateful to those who are so strong spiritually capable to inspire and guide.