14 November 2009

national anthem before music event at high school

faces turned to the flag, standing, and some with hand on heart

Seeing the many families loyally in support of the outdoor marching band season finale here in the school gymnasium, I began to imagine all the statistical facts reported in the news headlines and in feature stories by investigative reports, documentary film makers, and so on.

Among the 300-400 people gathered this evening, we can imagine such things as:
-jobless rates (and those under-employed; those working without benefits)
-single parent households
-people dependent on social services for food, heat, health, transportation
-debt loads vs net assets/worth
-per centage of un-insured (and under-insured) for health care
-fraction of the adult population who smoke (a generation ago almost 40%, now 20%)
-number of people with serious health threats
-public health problems: flu, obesity, lack of fresh food (not refined or highly processed)
-educational attainment levels (those completing 2 years of college; four; advanced degrees)
-income stratifications
-abuse: substance abuse and addictions (including gambling), DV, TV-video gaming
-personal development difficulties: adjustment, self-esteem, lack of (wide) perspective
-learning difficulties (emotional, physical, mental)
-generational preoccupations: each season of life has distractions and worries

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