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Monkey see, monkey do

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By Bernadette Lauritzen

You must know that as I write these weekly columns, I try to keep a positive spin on things. After all, to me that’s what assets really boils down to.
On the other hand, sometimes it is hard to pretend all is right in the world, when it really isn’t.
The asset for this week is peaceful conflict resolution. While the definition entails ending conflict non-violently, I feel that should also extend to words and deeds, and not just boil down to throwing punches.
I’m reminded of the saying, “monkey see, monkey do.” To me, it appears that we keep asking our children to do better than we do, or to put forth more effort than we are willing to do ourselves.
I will use two political examples to explain, but trust me, I’m not for or against either side of the issue or either organization. I’m just trying to illustrate the behavior.
Recently, our children saw that in Wisconsin, when some politicians weren’t going to get their way, they left town to avoid a vote. State troopers were actually sent out to find them and bring them back, to no avail.
If you didn’t show up to your job because you disagreed, you’d get fired. If a student didn’t show up to a test because they disagreed with an assignment, they’d get an “F.”
In Albuquerque there was a no confidence vote when Albuquerque Police Department officers felt their leader didn’t get them what they wanted. We don’t always get to oust someone when things don’t go our way.
I think we need to teach kids that we don’t always get what we want and it doesn’t mean the world has to end. If things don’t work out your way, adjust your plan and find the best way to still accomplish your goals.
I’ll come a little closer to home with my next example. The Los Alamos Public Schools are offering seven surveys for which you may provide input on budget cuts for the next school year. The entire community is welcome to take all seven and after completing one, at the time of this writing, it only took me
18 minutes.
Now is the time to provide input for the future of our youth. You have until Sunday to get it done. Once the window closes, no militant e-mail and no grandstanding at a future School Board meeting will matter, but your input is being requested right now.
If they cut sports programs and you didn’t take a few minutes to provide feedback, it will be partially your fault. If they cut librarians and books because you decided to watch TV for those 20 minutes instead of completing a survey, you lose the right to complain.
If you don’t take a few minutes and we lose a principal, nurse or counselor, try to remember not to get angry about it when the school bell rings in August.
Your opinion is welcome and nobody is asking for more than a few minutes of your time.
Are your kids worth it? Are the children of your community worth it?
Regardless of whether you are 18 or 98, hop online and vote with your keystroke.

Bernadette Lauritzen is the Assets Coordinator for Los Alamos.