There is a small town in the northwestern portion of Arkansas called Ozone. Most people have never heard of this place, but it is where my mom was born. I’ve been thinking about that small town this week and recalling what mom would often comment about when recounting her youth.
I think it was in the 1990s when young people wished to purchase blue jeans that were weathered, stressed, and even ripped. My mother could never quite understand what the attraction was to pay money for clothes she remembers many needing to wear during the hard years when growing up. She knew how it felt to wear an article of clothing with a rip, and also how in later years it felt when the opportunity presented itself to have clothes that were fresh and new off of the store shelves.
I also recall a lesson she imparted to her children that today seems no longer to be in vogue. Simply put, when one does not know what they are talking about they should just stay silent. Listen to others when not aware of an issue and in so doing not alert others to your deficit of knowledge about the topic at hand. A person can later learn about the matter and if the topic comes up again be ready to talk.
In today’s climate, we see ample evidence that people will just start to talk and babble about so much they have not a clue about. Be it on talk radio or through comments on social media. There seems to be no chagrin about being woefully uninformed these days. Rather, among a certain demographic, there seems to be an emboldened sense of letting others know one has a mouth to use and a hand that can text but also making it abundantly clear there is nothing worthwhile to communicate.
As of late, I am most dismayed by the level of dialogue from some concerning wearing a mask so to fight the pandemic. I have heard the most insane comments ranging from ‘masks cause sickness’ to conspiracy theories about why masks are being pressed into usage by the government. Many are demanding “FREE-DUMB”. Facts and medical knowledge can not dislodge their ignorance or temper their tongues.
I am confident that mom would advise those people it’s best just to stay quiet. They are are just embarrassing themselves.
Today we are slipping down a most horrible hill of ignorance and willful nonsense as lies are spread against the need to wear masks so to stem the spread of COVID-19. Mom grew up when many of the medical breakthroughs we now take for granted were not yet discovered. She would add that too many people just have no idea what she experienced growing up in her day. At the rate we are moving they just might.
Not a bad slice of advice to come from one who grew up in Ozone, a place most people have never heard of.
And so it goes.