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  Monday, September 1st   

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Shedding Skin

Chase James Wigmore, Sault Youth Association for local2 sault ste. marie
December 1st, 2011 at 12:27pm



This article is a column or editorial.
The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of LOCAL2.

SHEDDING SKIN: A Guide to Overcoming Adversity


sault youth dec 1


Credit: Sault Youth Assocation

I was what some may call a problem child. As a young child I was introduced to the world around me, and I have been discontent ever since. I was taught early on that this was wrong and that I was selfish and immature for feeling this way. Of course, I wasnít exactly displaying my discontent in any mature or productive manner, but I felt that my feelings were justified.

As I grew older I began to question the world around me. I began to question the people who I had come to learn were superior to me and found some enlightening yet obvious knowledge. The godlike authority figures who had specialized in making me feel guilty, worthless and stupid were mere mortals just like the rest of us. In fact, as I grew even older I began to realize that most of them werenít even that intelligent. Empowered by my new found knowledge and recently discovered courage, I rebelled. To be honest, it didnít go too well.

I felt trapped, like there was nothing I could do. I felt as though my entire life up to that point had been setting me up for a fail; that I was destined to inherit a dead end job or be stuck in a rut on disability dependent on the system that had pushed me around all this time. I felt like this for years.

I am not alone, far from it in fact. Iíve seen the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical poverty, dragging themselves through the unforgiving system looking for a better way. There are so many great minds out there who believe that politics is a game for the wealthy and powerful. If they are right, then we should be very afraid, but if they are wrong we should be aware of it. We should be rising up as brothers and sisters and take control of our community for the better. Sault Ste. Marie is failing economically, as is the rest of the world. Why should we believe that only things we can do are either protest unsuccessfully or submit to our reptilian overlords? Politics should be a social game and I think we should be raising awareness that we actually can make a difference if we all get together and do something about the community instead of just planning to move somewhere else that hasnít quite failed yet.

I am no longer afraid. I have gotten a little older, a little wiser, a little more articulate and I think itís time for me to learn more how to benefit myself and my community. I no longer want to be a failure. In fact, I want to be a lawyer. I making a game plan for myself and Iím putting it into action. I will not let anyone tell me I cannot be what I want because of my past behaviour. If anything, I feel my rebellious past is actually an asset. I have learned to question authority, but not to blindly question it or make wild accusations. Instead I question the policies, the motives and the procedures so I can form an intelligent opinion based on factual evidence and real life observations. I have learned to conform to society, but not to blindly conform to herd mentality. I realize that Iím probably not going to get a high paying job dressed like a circus performer and using certain vulgarities as nouns, verb, adjectives and wherever else I can fit them. And most importantly, I have learned how I can make a plan for my own success without compromising my integrity and my own set of values.

I am still learning. I will continue learning until I either die or descend into blissful senility though the natural process old age. I would like to use what I have learned and what I have always known for the benefit of myself and my community. I want to show my peers that it is possible to make a difference. I want to show my superiors that the voice of the Ďproblem childí is a valid and intelligent voice that does possess the ability to form a proper sentence. And most of all, I want to show myself that I can do this and that it is possible to make a difference in the world around me.

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