Oregon Cultural Trust 2019 year-end Op Ed
A Silent Tragedy: Children and Mental Health
Sherman County Court Session, Dec. 18
Live Each Day to the Fullest
The Ten Cannots
Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do
Christmas gift suggestions:
To your enemy, forgiveness.
To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service.
To all, charity.
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect.
~ Oren Arnold.
1. Oregon Cultural Trust 2019 year-end Op Ed
To the Editor:
In Oregon we are proud of our great outdoors, audacious beer and green living. We also treasure our famous quality of life. One of our best-kept secrets is how the Oregon Cultural Trust protects that quality of life.
Uniquely Oregonian, the Oregon Cultural Trust was established in 2001 to support art, heritage, history and humanities – together they define our cultural character.
The Cultural Trust empowers Oregonians to double the impact of their cultural giving at no additional cost to them.
Here’s how it works: Make a donation to one or more of Oregon’s 1,400+ cultural nonprofits, then make a matching gift to the Cultural Trust by Dec. 31. You get 100 percent of the Cultural Trust donation back when you file your state taxes – by claiming the cultural tax credit – and the state legislature invests that same amount in Oregon culture.
That’s right, the state of Oregon funds our music, our libraries, our museums and our monuments, but only when you demonstrate how important they are to you.
Now is a critical time for spreading the word about the Cultural Trust – due to confusion around federal tax law changes, donations declined last year for the first time since the 2008 recession. While the new laws do impact how many Oregonians itemize deductions at the federal level, they do not change the benefits of investing in Oregon culture. Whether or not you itemize, your donation to the Cultural Trust still prompts a 100 percent tax credit on your state taxes!
Since its creation, the Cultural Trust has awarded over $24 million to Oregon cultural nonprofits. In Sherman County those grant awards have exceeded $50,000 in the last eight years. A 10-year impact study by ECONorthwest calls the Trust’s geographic reach “remarkable.”
Please total your cultural donations, give a matching amount to the Cultural Trust and claim the cultural tax credit on your state taxes. We are trusting you won’t keep this important secret to yourself!
Sherman County Cultural Coalition
PS: Visit culturaltrust.org to learn more.
2. A Silent Tragedy: Children and Mental Health
By Dr. Luis Rojas Marcos, Psychiatrist.
There is a silent tragedy that is unfolding today in our homes, and concerns our most precious jewels: our children. Our children are in a devastating emotional state! In the last 15 years, researchers have given us increasingly alarming statistics on a sharp and steady increase in childhood mental illness that is now reaching epidemic proportions:
Statistics do not lie:
- 1 in 5 children have mental health problems
- A 43% increase in ADHD has been noted
- A 37% increase in adolescent depression has been noted
- There has been a 200% increase in the suicide rate in children aged 10 to 1
What is happening and what are we doing wrong?
Today’s children are being over-stimulated and over-gifted with material objects, but they are deprived of the fundamentals of a healthy childhood, such as:
- Emotionally available parents
- Clearly defined limits
- Balanced nutrition and adequate sleep
- Movement in general but especially OUTDOORS
- Creative play, social interaction, unstructured game opportunities and boredom spaces
Instead, in recent years, children have been filled with:
- Digitally distracted parents
- Indulgent and permissive parents who let children “rule the world” and whoever sets the rules
- A sense of right, of deserving everything without earning it or being responsible for obtaining it
- Inadequate sleep and unbalanced nutrition
- A sedentary lifestyle
- Endless stimulation, technological nannies, instant gratification and absence of boring moments
What to do?
If we want our children to be happy and healthy individuals, we have to wake up and get back to basics. It is still possible! Many families see immediate improvements after weeks of implementing the following recommendations:
- Set limits and remember that you are the captain of the ship. Your children will feel more confident knowing that you have control of the helm.
- Offer children a balanced lifestyle full of what children NEED, not just what they WANT. Don’t be afraid to say “no” to your children if what they want is not what they need.
- Provide nutritious food and limit junk food.
- Spend at least one hour a day outdoors doing activities such as: cycling, walking, fishing, bird / insect watching
- Enjoy a daily family dinner without smartphones or distracting technology.
- Play board games as a family or if children are very small for board games, get carried away by their interests and allow them to rule in the game
- Involve your children in some homework or household chores according to their age (folding clothes, ordering toys, hanging clothes, unpacking food, setting the table, feeding the dog etc.)
- Implement a consistent sleep routine to ensure your child gets enough sleep. The schedules will be even more important for school-age children.
- Teach responsibility and independence. Do not overprotect them against all frustration or mistakes. Misunderstanding will help them build resilience and learn to overcome life’s challenges,
- Do not carry your children’s backpacks, do not carry the homework they forgot, do not peel bananas or peel oranges if they can do it on their own (4-5 years). Instead of giving them the fish, teach them to fish.
- Teach them to wait and delay gratification.
- Provide opportunities for “boredom”, since boredom is the moment when creativity awakens. Do not feel responsible for always keeping children entertained.
- Do not use technology as a cure for boredom, nor offer it at the first second of inactivity.
- Avoid using technology during meals, in cars, restaurants, shopping centers. Use these moments as opportunities to socialize by training the brains to know how to work when they are in mode: “boredom”
- Help them create a “bottle of boredom” with activity ideas for when they are bored.
- Be emotionally available to connect with children and teach them self-regulation and social skills.
- Turn off the phones at night when children have to go to bed to avoid digital distraction.
- Become a regulator or emotional trainer for your children. Teach them to recognize and manage their own frustrations and anger.
- Teach them to greet, to take turns, to share without running out of anything, to say thank you and please, to acknowledge the error and apologize (do not force them), be a model of all those values you instill.
- Connect emotionally – smile, hug, kiss, tickle, read, dance, jump, play or crawl with them.
3. Notice. Sherman County Court Session, Dec. 18
The Sherman County Court session scheduled for Wednesday, December 18th, at 9:00 a.m. will be held in the Commissioners Meeting Room at the Sherman County Courthouse, 500 Court Street, Moro, Oregon, 97039. The agenda, including updates, will be posted on the Sherman County website at https://www.co.sherman.or.us/sherman-county-court-draft-agendas/.
4. Live Each Day to the Fullest
For some, today’s topic will create a little discomfort. Please do not be concerned. A little discomfort is usually a good thing, not something to be avoided. It’s a sign of impending growth. Here goes: When it comes to “near death” experiences, most people report some common feelings. Let’s take a look at what that encompasses.
What we are talking about is not what their experience of death is like. We are referring to their altered attitude toward life. Almost every single survivor reports feeling more connected to humanity and less concerned about self.
For example, in 1973, when Stevie Wonder came out of a four-day coma after an automobile accident, he deepened his commitment to helping his fellow man. “I will not be operating so much ‘on’ time as ‘in’ time,” he said, meaning that he would strive to help others before it was too late.
This is exactly what people in similar circumstances report they feel – an overwhelming desire to be of service. For many of us, it seems to take a severe shakeup or a close-call with death to wake us up to our own sense of purpose and what we truly value. It’s just like Ebenezer Scrooge, in Charles Dickens’ story “A Christmas Carol.” He had to be shown his own death before the spirits could convince him to change his ways.
How would you live differently if you had just come back from the brink of death? Would you pay more attention to your business or to your family? What would you treasure? What would you stop doing? What would you start? What do you truly value?
Consider, if you will, that third level of happiness we talked about recently – Contribution. Perhaps we don’t need to have a near-death experience in order to live every day with gratitude, and to create the most complete life we can have. We don’t need to hear “angel wings” or be visited by ghosts in the night, in order to better connect to the world around us.
What do you think? Will you go back to your “regularly scheduled programming,” or start something new and vital in your life? ~The Pacific Institute
5. The Ten Cannots
In 1916, a minister and outspoken advocate for liberty, William J. H. Boetcker, published a pamphlet entitled The Ten Cannots:
You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
You cannot build character and courage by taking away man’s initiative and independence.
You cannot help small men by tearing down big men.
You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer.
You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income.
You cannot establish security on borrowed money.
You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they will not do for themselves.
Fact is, the central government cannot give to anybody what it does not first take from
6. Links: Things to Think About & Things to Do