Divide & Conquer Didn’t Work — Maybe We Should Try Something Else

“Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the King’s horses,
And all the King’s men,
Couldn’t put Humpty together again”

Our world sits on the precipice of annihilation.  Through our own deeds and actions we are witnessing a fall from grace, not only as a society, but as a super power.  Before it’s too late, before we share Humpty’s fate, maybe we can do something about it.  The following is a thank you letter received by me from a prophetic student I taught last year in 8th grade economics through Junior Achievement.  She is only 14 years old.

Dear Mr. Cuellar,

After I read a very confusing and action packed book, I step back and think about it for a while. That is what I did with all that you taught us because I feel like I can only truly thank you if I understand everything you have taught us. That moment has finally come for me and I just want to thank you with all my heart. What you have taught me will live on and stay with me forever. Life is there, waiting to be taken advantage of, and now I’m ready to. The only thing that is holding me back is time. I only have so much time on this earth, and life is measured by how many people you have left behind that were touched by you in some way. Never before has “time is of the essence” seemed more real, and death more imminent. Now I understand that each minute of every day has infinite possibilities and they are all there, but in order to see them, you have to ask questions. Questions are a way to fully understand yourself and all the opportunities you have. When you figure out who you are, you are happy. So, in a way, questions are the way to understand opportunities that can influence somebody else and a way to become happy.

The reason finding who you are or your “self” is so important is because once you truly value yourself, you value your time, and when you value your time you do something with it. With time comes choice. Choice is one of the trickiest things I think I will ever deal with. You base your decisions on reality and experiences, but what if you perceive and/or remember reality and experiences wrong? Your final decision could be disastrous for yourself and/or others, and that isn’t all. We have a fear of loss. It has gotten to the point where I wonder why we have this almost psychotic fear of loss. It makes no sense at all, and yet I know that I am afflicted with it as well. I know that those who are truly happy and/or successful businessmen have overcome that fear to some degree. So, again, I ask a question. Why can’t I overcome that fear? The lengths some people go so as to not get a perceived loss has astounded me. It seems that we will do almost anything to avoid a small loss even if in doing so we get a large gain. Again, all these outside forces control our decision making. In order to be successful I must master this tricky choice-making business, to an acceptable degree, or fail. I realize now that I need to take a little risk, and reevaluate my reality every now and then to succeed, and I plan to.

Another thing you taught us towards the end was the gift of sharing. When we pool all our resources together instead of splitting them up we become successful; when we don’t, we fail. If this is true, which I believe it is, then by dividing up into countries, states, and races we have set ourselves up to fail. We have created many evil things by not sharing. We have created world hunger and war and many other things. We need to stop dividing ourselves up.  We need to focus on reevaluating the things we have been taught to us since the cradle, and realize that we are all one people in order to succeed.  

Thanks to you, I am now ready to grab every opportunity I get and I know that I have the heart of a champion, or at least a heart of a champion in the making. I want every day to be the best day, and I want to know how to play the game of life. You have taught me all that, and I don’t think I could forget it if I tried.

 

By Haley Golden
Intro by Fred Cuellar