Benevolence breeds good self-esteem
Date May 16, 2006
Section(s) Columnists
By Wendell Wendt  
As we write this, several thousand Maytag employees are trying to decide where they will look for a new job and what level of wages they are willing to accept.

Two we know of have reached tentative decisions. One has turned down a Whirlpool offer to relocate. When her layoff comes, she expects to continue to have a Newton address and will look for a job in Des Moines. The other person lacks a few years of being retirement age. She will look for a satisfactory local position and, if she does not find it, will move to a major Midwestern city where family members live.

We hope most Maytag employees will start out looking for a new job with reasonably high expectations and only lower their hopes when it is apparent that this is necessary.

The United States is in somewhat the same position as Maytag workers. We are bogged down in a war no one knows how to end. We are obviously ruining the environment of our world as a fit place for humans to live. Our health care system is an abomination and population growth is out of control.

It would be easy to give up and accept that the world is rapidly descending to a figurative Hell.

But I have hopes for humanity and admire organizations and individuals who keep striving to better conditions in this world.

An organization that has high goals is the Friends Committee on National Legislation. The goals of this organization are listed on a card I recently received and reads:

“We seek a world free of war and the threat of war.

We seek a society with equity and justice for all.

We seek a community where every person’s potential may be fulfilled.

We seek an earth restored.”

Maytagers — even as you seek a new job and feel sorry for yourself, you will encounter people who need help worse than you do. Pause a little bit to give that assistance. There are many benevolent organizations in Newton that can use some volunteer help. If you give that help, you will feel good about yourself, and that feeling will help when you interview for a new job.


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