Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Crabs in a bucket...and more.

I experienced two of the saddest things I've ever heard in my life on the Dennis Prager show several years ago. I don't know if they shocked me or just confirmed my worst fears. But I still to this day remember where I was when I heard these two calls. (And if you know me, you know that I don't remember anything!)

Thing 1: It was shortly after I got married. I was in the studio getting my gear setup and this girl calls into the show. She was a black high school student in the L.A. School District. (It's ok. I can say that...I'm black.) She proceeds to say that she doesn't raise her hand in class, she doesn't bring her books to class. She doesn't openly participate because her friends would accuse her of trying to be white! She feared being talked about at best and even beat up if she would be seen to take school seriously. It broke my heart. Talk about crabs in a bucket! The number 1 "Yahoo Answers" response to what does the term 'crabs in a bucket mean" is as follows. "The expression is derived from the observation of the behavior of multiple crabs in a bucket. If you put a bunch of crabs in a bucket, they will keep pulling each other down. As soon as one crab climbs up closer to freedom another crab will grab on to it and pull it back to the bottom. This is actually true. The saying is used as a comparison of how society class structure works. It is typically used in regard to poverty/poor groups of society. When someone attempts to better themselves or their social class, other individuals will try to pull them back down to their level. People don't like someone thinking they are better than the rest of the group so if one person tries to better their situation (better job, more education) the other members of the group will attempt to keep them from progressing. In the end nobody wins. Just like the crabs in the bucket." So very sad! So very insane!

Thing 2. I was driving to Simi Valley to work on the Visiting Terra EP. I was on the 405/118 interchange and the other disturbing call came on. (I noted at the time that she sounded to be white and in at least her mid-thirties or older) The caller told Dennis that she had 4 kids and a 5th on the way and her husband had left her. (I could be wrong about the number of children, but you get the gist.) She had gone on welfare for a period of time. She eventually got herself situated with child care and a job sufficient to allow her to get out of the system. She goes into the welfare office and tells the person at the counter she is ready to opt out. This person tells her that she doesn't need to get out of the system. If she has another kid she can get more money. The woman says "But I'm not married!" The worker says that's ok. She should go and get pregnant and then she won't have to work! How terrifying is that. That is what the government sends as a message to us all! Don't get on your feet we'll take care of you.

And here is what reminded me, this morning, of those sad, scary revelations from so long ago.
"Isn't It Ironic? The food stamp program, part of the Department of Agriculture, is pleased to be distributing the greatest amount of food stamps ever.
Meanwhile, the Park Service, also part of the Department of Agriculture, asks us to "please not feed the animals" because the animals may grow dependent and not learn (My insert: learn not?) to take care of themselves." (Thanks Ken Stewart , Brad Beals and David Theriault)

I would NEVER, EVER say that people don't need help just to get by at times. Where would I be but for family, church and friends who have stepped in at times. And in turn we, as a family, do everything we can to help others however and whenever we can. But there is a systematic machinery in place in our present society built to make us utterly dependent on government and it is scary and wrong! Let's not be crabs in buckets waiting on Uncle Sam to take care of us!


  1. Well Said my friend!!

    Blessings to you and yours

    Eric Price

  2. I had gotten that email "Isn't it Ironic" and it's soooo true BUT sad for "we the people". The govt has been conditioning us for many years and lately it's like a frieght train out of control that's about to crash. I'm saddened at how our great country is falling and can't seem to get up because the people are lazy.

    BTW, nice blog Aaron!

    Your Mitten Friends ;)

    1. Thanks so much for the comment and the encouragement! You're now being followed, BTW ;-)

  3. Aaron, your insightful comments, as usual, have awakened "The Sleeping Giant"! It's a very challenging prospect for all Americans of voting age or any 'age' for that matter to prayerfully consider our options in this election year. As a Christian, I have always believed that there are many things the church can do that government can't and should not!
    Your blog is like water in the desert. Keep it flowing..

    El G. man (pero yo!)

  4. Love you, Aaron, and love this post. Thanks for pointing me to it. I share your sadness and your observations.

    I recently had a somewhat tangential experience that speaks at least to the dependent class culture.

    Jake and I were visiting a Christian college in Kentucky that he will likely attend this fall, Lord willing, and in a financial aid seminar the moderator was talking about PELL grants from the Federal Government. He went on to say they were "Free money".

    I had to approach him after the seminar, after wrongly or rightly holding my tongue at the moment, to say, "You understand there is no such thing as "free money, right?"

    He said, of course, but defended himself as just engaging in shorthand versus loaned money, but it was indicative of a society that believes if it comes from someone else that it is free, and that is sooooooo not the case.

    Union CD I got from Troy - ca 1998 - still one of my favorite Desktop iTunes selections ;-) LOVE it.

  5. Love you too, man! Are you officially part of the blogosphere? I WILL FOLLOW YOU! Ahhh, free money!!! What a great and noble thought!!!!!!! If only there was such a thing! I can't believe Jake is ready for college!. Time keeps on slippin'... Ah, the days of UNION. So very long ago... GOOD TIMES!!!!


Please keep it civil. Disagreement does not have to be disagreeable. Thank you so much! I look forward to your input!