Who are these silent strangers waiting for me to know who they are?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Tragedy unexplained

I read a friends blog today that has filled me with anger and frustration. It was a post about the starving horses confiscated in Fresno from a previous lottery winner. The question posed by my friend, Why would they? My first reaction is the knee jerk reaction of all animal lovers. They are selfish, self indulgent, assholes who, in the process or living their uncontrolled lives, forgot about the animals dependent upon them. They should do jail time at the least but what I really want is for them to be locked up and have someone "forget" to feed them.
Aside from that, I have to look deeper, these people are just people after all. They thought "wouldn't it be fine to have a horse ranch?" but never realized the work and dedication it takes to care for these majestic creatures. There are people who get so overwhelmed with their own life and stress that they stop caring about their own welfare. They stop washing laundry and cleaning house, the stop caring about their own hygiene and what they eat. How could someone in that condition take care of anyone or anything when they can no longer care for themselves? It makes me angry, very angry and it makes me feel helpless. But I suspect that, like hoarders, they did not intend to harm anyone and when things got out of control they avoided reality out of self preservation. So, along with my harsh judgement there is the slightest bit of pity. Here is a person who thought that winning the lottery would solve all their problems. Now they could really have a chance at a good life. But no one teaches us how to live with poverty or sudden extreme wealth. If you could not handle a small amount of money and never learned responsibility, then having sudden wealth just magnifies stress and complicates life. Small problems faced with poor judgement and no self responsibility become large problems, sometimes with terrible consequences. Unfortunately, caring for animals, like having children, is not preceded by a maturity and aptitude test. A person does not have to prove they can handle it before they are faced with actually doing it. So - was this guy a self absorbed ass? or was he a sad example of how our society does nothing to teach self responsibility? How in the world can we teach adults to actually be responsible, understand the consequences of their own actions when we, as a society, work so hard to teach and reward the pass the buck mentality. "It's perfectly alright to do your least on a job because if you are fired you can get unemployment." "It's not my job to stop bullying or discrimination." etc.
Ultimately, I just don't understand why or how a tragedy like this can happen.

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