by Gregory Field
We each have accomplishments that should be celebrated, whether it's passing a course in CPR or getting a newspaper out on time. When we rise to the occasion we should exalt in the experience--feel the glow of the sun on us. Really, that glow should happen from within--a sense of pride and accomplishment--but of course recognition is always welcome. And those times when we don't quite make it--that's an opportunity for a learning experience. We don't really need the limelight then.
In putting a newspaper together over the last two years I've had a number of opportunities for learning. Last month I edited a story that put the limelight on some problems at the Weinberg Village--without celebrating the accomplishments. And I know that hurt some people when they were already feeling vulnerable. That wasn't my intent. In fact, most residents of Weinberg Village are attending classes, learning new skills, and are highly motivated. Some of the residents on their own initiative have started an aerobic exercise class, a huli-huli chicken fundraiser and an internal newsletter.
So in putting people's voices into words I missed the whole story. None of us is perfect. It provided me with an opportunity to learn:
* Responsibility and blame are not the same. When people accept responsibility in their lives they actively set about to make a change. To blame is to deny one's responsibility and play the victim of someone else's actions.
* The truth doesn't set you free. The truth is not enough. It takes understanding.
* There is a difference in someone speaking proudly in the open about their own doings, and someone speaking in fear and shame about another.
* Words written in this paper have a lot of power. With power comes a responsibility to see beyond the truth--to understand.
Gregory Field, editor