Part Ghandi Part Bruce Lee

“Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.”

Theodore Roosevelt (American 26th US President (1901-09), 1858-1919)

I work with a group of people that have won that prize Teddy was talking about. They are my workmates who work with handicapped children (mostly autistic) and give it their all on a daily basis.

The 2000 Census showed a sharp growth in the nation’s young handicapped population. One of every dozen U.S. children and teenagers — 5.2 million — has a physical or mental disability. The disabilities captured by the census could range in severity from mild asthma to serious mental illness or retardation demanding full-time care. Special-education enrollment rose twice as fast as overall school enrollment in the past decade. Some of the growth is explained by greater recognition, changing definitions or more willingness to report a handicap. There are more theories than answers for the sharp rise in autism, asthma and learning disabilities.

In February 2007, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued their ADDME autism prevalence report. The report showed the prevalence of autism had risen to 1 in every 150 American children, and almost 1 in 94 boys. Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and affects a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others.

I have seen people argue that ADD and ADH are just names or labeling for old-fashioned bad behaviors. I’ve seen others argue about over use drugs like Ritalin. I’m not really interested in arguing for or against any political correctness. The fact is there are tons of kids who really need some support and help. If you had to spend some time in the shoes of a parent with Autism or any other physical or mental challenged child you’d forget about any silliness of labeling or not labeling a disease.

It’s hard enough to be a parent of a healthy child today let alone a parent of a child that needs constant care. God bless these parents for I have nothing but the highest respect for them. What I do know a little more about is the teachers, assistants, caregivers, physical, occupational, and speech therapists that work with these kids. I want to salute these working-class heroes for as John Lennon sang, “They are something to see.” See them most people don’t but I have had the privilege to see them in action and here’s my impression.

Daily Working-Class Heroes

Daily flashes of heroism
illuminated their dedication.
No dollar figure can respect
such humble people
that lessen the pains of the earth.
Fighting the good fight
moving aside all obstacles
to get the job done.
To them giving becomes nourishment
which never fills them up.
For they have bottomless
pockets on their hearts.
They protect autistic children
from life’s cruelties.
Breaking down walls
to give them a future.
Listening attentively and respectfully
to each child’s collage of needs.
Helping them grow up
strong physically and morally.
And growth when dealing
with an autistic child
can be a painful process.
When working with these kids
two words march together:
love and pain.
The pain of
bites and scratches from the kids
and so many bruises
there’s not enough
chocolate to heal.
If God judges people
by their scars these folks
will have VIP suites in heaven.
For they expend all their energy
to satisfy endless needs.
Through toil and moil
strife and struggle.
And they do it with
courage and calmness
and laughter.
When days are really bad
they practice a little math
by subtracting negativity
and adding a little more devotion,
a little more charity
and a little more patience.
For they’re specialists
who cannot be just spectators.
Liberators who’s only fear
would be surrender.
They’re part Gandhi
with the defensive moves
of Bruce Lee.
They’ve found nothing is difficult
when you put your heart into it.
They know that the evolution
of the child
mirrors the evolution
of the race.
Those live longest
who live most.
Long lives and a hug
to you all

McCain video of him not shaking OBama’s hand: Mccain the troll won’t shake Obama’s hand

I love elderly people who are feisty: God bless elderly feisty people like this wonderful woman

Isn’t this how Traficant got started? This is how Traficant got started

Nick Drake’s music is so melancholy it always makes me cry:the late Nick Drake

The producer of the band Fairport Convention, who once was coincidentally in the studio where Nick was recording, heard his music and said: “Hearing such beautiful music, one feels ashamed about the ugliness of the world.”

More from Nick:Place to Be Nick Drake

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