Do you know how they say “when life gives you lemons, make a lemonade?” 🍋

Well, I love lemonade. I love lemons even more. But some lemons I would rather live without.

Two months ago, my country entered another round of escalation with the rulers of Gaza strip. For almost two weeks, they fired rockets into Israel, which meant that we could hear a war siren at any hour of the day and run into shelter. One rocket even hit a street not far away from my home, killing one man. Not my kind of a lemon, you see?

But in the process of those two weeks, I could notice some things about myself as a parent, and that's what I want to share with you in this episode.

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Being a parent makes you face stressful situations that require you to step up your game. Having two kids with different temper tantrums at the same time in the middle of a grocery shop, for example, or, having to change a diaper full of poop in the last moment, knowing that you might miss your bus because of it. But nothing, nothing really prepared me for being a parent when rockets were being fired towards my city. But it happened recently. So today, what have I learned while parenting under fire? Stay tuned.

Alright, right. Welcome back to The Apparently Parent Podcast, it has been a while. So yeah, this isn't the episode I thought I would create when bringing the podcast back from a break, which was to be honest, longer than I thought I would take. But as we will see in this episode, life has a way to surprise you.

So in case you aren't aware, let me take you back to what happened in the Middle East recently. And it starts on May 9 2021. It was a Monday here in Israel's capital, Jerusalem, things were really heated. Now, right off the bat, I won’t tire you with all the details, which I myself find hard to follow. But it was the National Day of celebrating our capital. And it came in the wake of high tensions between the Arab and Jewish populations in Jerusalem. Tension was really high on that day. And then the leaders of Hamas, which is the political group who is ruling the population of Gaza, they issued an ultimatum saying that if Israel won't move its policing forces from the disputed areas of Jerusalem, they will fire rockets into Israel. And they said, and did.

Now, as I've said, I'm really not going to try and explain the long Israel Palestine conflict. It's way too long, and way too complicated. And I don't even know that I understand everything, and I live here. I have lived here for my entire life. But you know, suffice it to say that, if you are not aware, Gaza, is a small strip of land in the southwest of Israel, that is no longer considered part of Israel. And it's highly populated. It's very dense. And its population is Palestinian, of course. And it's controlled, internally, it's controlled by Hamas, which is a political and religious and also a military organization, and Israel controlls Gaza from the outside. Israel controls all the comings and goings, we provide the electricity for them, we control if they can get in or out, what kind of products can go in and out, if they can go fishing and all that. Now, you may call it a siege, I'm not sure if it's accurate, according to what a siege really is. But you know, it's probably not far from that.

And the people of Gaza are really having it bad. Really, really bad inside and out. And every couple of years, we are all thrown into this high intensity clash where they fire rockets into Israel, the Israeli army retaliates, and this is what happened, as I've said on Monday, and I'm really getting into the parenting stuff, I just want to lay on the ground and bring you into our experience.

On Monday, Hamas threatened to fire rockets into Israel if the Israeli police won't leave the contested grounds. And they have delivered on that promise. And they fired rockets into Jerusalem at first. And then of course, the Israeli army retaliated with airstrikes, and that started an escalation of hostilities, in the form of them firing rockets into Israel, at different hours of the day into different areas of Israel, and airplanes, of the IDF, The Israeli Defense Army, attacked buildings and targets in Gaza, destroying buildings, killing people, some of them innocent civilians who were caught in the middle. Here in Israel schools were immediately shut down. I couldn't go to work for more than a week. And we had to be ready at every moment to run into shelter.

When the bomb sirens started it meant that we had 90 seconds to run into a shelter, which we were lucky to have in house in the house where we live. There's a shelter in many buildings here in Israel, not all of them. And you know, 90 seconds is is lucky because for those who live closer to Gaza, it means they have 30 seconds or even 15 seconds. And I read a paper about the experience of parents living in those areas and sometimes they have to choose what child they're picking up when running into shelter because they have only 15 seconds, which is kind of crazy. I really don't want to go into who suffers more, us or the Gasa people. I don't think it's relevant because this is a parenting podcast. And I want to focus on the experience of being a parent in that kind of situation, because children and children and parents and parents, and that was a reality for what felt like a month, what it was actually 11 nerve wracking days until a ceasefire was declared and accepted on both ends.

Now, I have to admit, it wasn't my first rodeo. It wasn't my first war. Exactly 30 years ago, 1991, the first Gulf War erupted in Iraq. And you know, Israel wasn't even a side in the war. It was, as far as I remember, the United States and Iraq and Kuwait. But Israel, which was seen as an ally to the United States, got hit when the Iraqi military fired missiles, long distance missiles, into Israel. And I remember that we, we were afraid that they might have like, chemical warheads. So we had to walk, I was 10 years old back then, and we had to walk everywhere with a box holding this kind of anti chemical warfare mask that if you know, something happened, we have to put those masks on. So we protect ourselves from Serine gas, or whatever that was back then.

And that was my life as a child for like, maybe 90 days back then, I was in fourth grade. But you know, I was a kid then. And I didn't assume the responsibilities of an adult. I had adults to protect me emotionally, and physically. But now I'm a dad, I have a seven years old boy, and a three years old girl. And I'm responsible for their safety, inside and out. Physical safety, emotional safety. So How the hell do you do that when someone is firing rockets at you? And for folks over and in Gaza? Who have children of their own? How do you parent? How do you take care of your children? How do you take care of them emotionally and physically, when airplanes are, you know, circling above, firing rockets into buildings.

So in this episode, I want to share with you some of the musings that I have noticed in myself during those fateful, scary days. And, again, I want to acknowledge that my own experience is pretty mild. Because in the end, I live in the center of Israel, which means we had a couple of attacks. We had a rocket falling really close to my neighborhood, doing a very loud boom, it was really scary. And it killed one man. But some areas in Israel had it worse, my cousin and his family had to spend most of those days in shelter, like almost 24/7, and as I've said that people have really suffered many, many losses, including many children who didn't deserve to be in that situation.

But I think my own personal experience, as a parent, is something that can be relevant to everybody. And to everybody, including you guys, if you if you listen to me from a place in the world that, you know, you don't have these experiences, you don't have those experiences in your life. And I envy you and I congratulate you for that. And I hope it will be your life forever without those kinds of situations. But stress is stress, and life throwing curveballs at you is something that happens to everybody in different ways. And think you can learn from those experiences. And you know, sometimes adopt some ways of thinking or conducting yourself as a friend. And I hope that whenever there's trauma going on, we can at least try and learn something from it, and grow from it in some way.

So, you know, as I've said, life has a way of throwing curveballs at you, and you kind of need to be ready to deal with them. Now, I don't mean that you need to be prepared for every crazy scenario you can think of the day before, rockets were firing into as well. We didn't think I'd even think about the possibility of it happening. Not at all. I lived my life. So I don't mean, I don't mean to suggest that you should start to stockpile on canned food, or God forbidden weapons, but I do mean that we need to be prepared to deal with what life has prepared for us from our mental and emotional perspective. And it's not about preparing your physical reserves as much as preparing your mental reserves. Because every now and then life will turn the world upside down on you. It can be it can be very own very little scale, such as you baby having a fever on the morning of an important presentation. Do you have to make it work and you have no one to watch that baby. So I don't make maybe you're a single parent, and you have no one to take care of maybe, and you can go to work. And that's a really important day that you prepared for. And that happened, okay. It can also be a super mega major shitstorm, like a war erupting in your country. So there's, the scale is really, really wide. And between those two extremes, there's a huge scale of possibilities, and you can be prepared for everything. But luckily, you don't need to suffice it that you prepare yourself for the possibility of a change, the possibility of surprise, the possibility of bad things happening, bad news, and you make yourself more resilient, to deal with whatever comes, at least emotionally, at least in your own mind. So what does it mean? For me, it means working on our psychological flexibility. Psychological flexibility is a term that originated in what is known in psychology as acceptance and Commitment Therapy, which is one of my favorite, favorite psychological theories and practices. I use it extensively in my own life and with my clients. And it really is the crux of mental well being because being psychologically flexible means simply to be able to deal with whatever is coming up, whatever life brings whatever is happening without being thrown into the chaos of your raging mind on one hand, or freezing into emobility. On the other hand, it's like we trying to be in a continuous flowing river. And sometimes your river goes really fast, sometimes it goes slower, and you enjoy it better. Sometimes it's very, it's it can be scary sometimes, but as long as we are in the flow, and we're not being thrown into one bank, which can be into chaos. So we are panicking. And we don't know what to do, or we're freezing. As long as we're in the flow, we can deal with whatever is coming up, it doesn't mean that we always know what to do. It doesn't mean we always feel happy. It doesn't mean we stop being afraid. But we are not stuck on one emotion. And we are not stuck on despair. We are in flow. Now, of course, that's not a black and white kind of thing. And it's not like you're either psychologically flexible, or you. You don't there's a range here. And as long as you work on keeping those mental muscles flexible, you're going to do better. Will you be afraid stress? And we worry, don't confuse Of course you will, will you be able to be those things while maintaining a good measure of stamina to function and be a source of confidence and support to your loved ones, especially your children, most probably. And I guess that's good enough anyway. So what contributes to psychological flexibility. So what contributes to psychological flexibility. This is too big of a topic for this one episode. But for the sake of this situation, we were thrown into lately, I'm thinking mainly about acceptance, and what we can call mindful presence, shit happens. And when you can't change reality, and let's face it, the average civilian in Israel or the average civilian in Gaza, couldn't change the reality we were thrown into. Okay, we could protest that's about that. They even can vote the Hamas down, okay, we can try to vote our government down. And we really having a really hard time doing so in the last couple of years. So we can really change the situation as it is. But we can try to accept it for what it is. And that my friend is really not easy. I have come to realize that this is a life long practice of finding the balance between wanting to change reality and accepting reality. Because the thing is that you cannot really succumb to just acceptance. So just a radical upset acceptance of whatever is going on. You can just say, it is what it is. And that's that, because that's a recipe for neglect, or this depression, or nihilism depends where you take it. But you know, you can also you can also focus on how horrible and unfair everything is, because that's a recipe for for anxiety and despair. And the same is true for parenting at large. We are always trying to strike a balance between accepting our children for what they are the magnificent human beings they can be and wanting to move them forward. Right? So in those 11 days of tension and fear, I couldn't help but trying to accept the reality of the matter, doing whatever I can to protect us in that reality. While always being very mindful of how I was feeling when I was thinking what was going on in my mind and also How my family was feeling because that is something that I can affect. I can change exactly everything about my feelings, or my thoughts. But I can choose where to focus on. So I chose not to watch the news. I was updating on what was going on. But I chose not to watch news not to expose my children to frightening news, I chose not to go into online debates in arguments, I chose to listen to more music than usual, I heard he didn't listen to podcast in that week, because I couldn't concentrate on anything I even chose not chose not to work as much as I usually do. Some of my clients didn't want to meet anyway, because they were afraid to go outside. But I had to choose and see where I can have a better control and where I was focusing my mind on and that really helped me center my feelings. And, and that really helped me be there for my children. And that's where I could do something to help. For example, I could choose you to be mindful of how my son was feeling because he was really afraid when it all started, I had to accept that him being really stress and afraid, kind of stressed me out as well, because I'm as much as New York, as he is, however, I I couldn't let myself just be afraid. And I couldn't, I wouldn't let myself you know, tell him to just stop being afraid that I know, as a dad, that it won't help as a dad. And as a shrink. I know that doesn't help. So I had to accept him for the fear that he was having. I had to accept my fear. But I was also being very mindfully present with what I was thinking and feeling, and finding the ways to let the emotion flow and go, so I could help my child in that situation. And I gotta say that those moments really helped me to see the value of the parenting map, which is my method for becoming what I call the 21st century parent, which means a more present, more confident, more caring parent. And if you have listened to the podcast before, you know, the parenting map is structured around three pillars, which are mind attachment and purpose. And I came to realize that there was a guiding light in in those periods for moments of stress, for example, my purpose one of my values, as a father is to always try to make make he'll make kids feel not 100%, safe and secure with me, but 200% safe and secure with me. I want what I want them to feel as safe physically and emotionally as possible. So in those moments of fear, when I'm scared, as I'm grabbing my child, and my wife is grabbing our dog, and my son is running down the stairs to the shelter. My mind is also on how I want him to remember those moments. It's not only focused on how frayed I am. But also I want to remember those moments, I am sorry, how I want them to remember those moments next week, or next year, or 30 years from now, as I remember those moments of running into each other 30 years ago, when I was 10 years old. I'm aware of my role as their secure base, and safe haven. Those are Tales from the attachment theory, which leads me to the second pillar. And of course, I'm working with my mind, which is the first pillar all the time, I'm noticing what is coming up for me thoughts, emotions, sensations, trying to go into the mind of my child, both my girls, both my boy, whatever they were feeling and helping them. So I came to see how having this structure of the parenting map was really my guiding light in in those really stormy days. Now, if you want to learn more about the parenting map, and what does it mean, and how you can apply it to your own life? Yes, even in peaceful days, even if you don't know what rockets are, I have a workshop that can help you with that. So you can just go and check it out on apparently forward slash workshop. Now what I want to do now is I want to focus on some specific areas that I noticed and I think I have learned about during those days and flesh it out a little bit. So I want to start by talking about how stressful and uncertain situations really lead into a tunnel vision. So for the first few days, I really couldn't do anything. I cancelled most of my therapy sessions, both for safety reasons, but also because I knew I wouldn't be able to be there for my patients for my clients like they need me to my mind was really focused on being afraid and being worried. I was always listening for a hint of a siren. So normal everyday sounds that you normally don't really notice. made my heart We will jump because you know, our brain, our brain has a very important feature in life, your brain is a very important apparatus that is always scanning the environment for danger. And during those days, it was on overdrive. I couldn't think of anything else I couldn't study, I couldn't work. And you know what I can't, I came to realize that that's okay. So if you ever find yourself in a similar situation, even if it's not a war, like situation, even if you're really stressful, because I don't know, because of COVID, because of something that work, because you're having fights with your spouse, and you're thinking of divorce, whatever, if you find yourself in a stressful situation, and you notice uncertainty, and you notice you're going into this kind of tunnel vision is, first of all, cut yourself some slack. Really, as much as possible, you know, cut yourself some slack, you're human, your brain is a human brain. Keep on doing what needs to be done, I don't think you should cut yourself off from being a parent, you know, start to neglect and just repeat all day long, instead of cooking or no not being there for your children, okay. But at the beginning, cut yourself some slack, keep doing what needs to be done. But don't expect yourself to do too much. And you need to do things in order to, to let your mind find this is the space of a time to open up in whatever weights so you know, do what you need to take care of yourself. And that brings me to this second point which which, during stressful times, it's really hard to take care of yourself. And I really think that taking care of yourself is one of the most important things that you can do as a human being but especially as a parent, because this is something we do not only for our own personal sake, or indulgent, we do this for our children. Taking care of yourself might mean different things for different people for you know, for some, it means going out for a run every day. For others, taking the time to go out for drinks with their best friends every week, you know, leaving the children at home with your spouse. That goes a long way for some people. For me, a daily practice of short yoga in the morning. And some meditation during the day is very helpful for maintaining my own focus and sanity. And I think all of those things can help you gain more psychological flexibility, and feel better about yourself and be more open and present and patient with your children. And this is why those things are part of of the mind pillar of the parenting map. But to be honest, in those stressful days, I just couldn't find it in me to practice my self care habits. Every moment, I take some time, no more than 15 minutes, usually before everybody wakes up to do some yoga to energize me after waking up to clear and focus my mind on the day ahead. And usually I find the time during the day, sometimes between sessions sometimes before I go to bed for at least 10 minutes of silent meditation. And as soon as the first siren, blazed, all this went out the window. I didn't even be bothered to drink a full cup of water as soon as I wake up like I usually do. Now, is that bad? No. Is that good? Also know what it is? Okay, habits come and go. And sometimes you fall off the wagon. And scary words, sirens are a good reason for falling off the wagon, I think. But the thing, the most important thing here is that is that we have to be aware of that. You have to notice that it is happening and you have to take care to reinstate your self care habits as soon as possible because they do take care of you. You have them for a reason. Now, if they don't work for you try something else. If you tried yoga every day, and it doesn't help you don't bother find something else. You know, going out for drinks with friends isn't thing for me. I wouldn't focus on that. Okay, but other things aren't helping me. So you have to find what is working for you. And then when you fall off the wagon, you have to notice that you did and the thing about why? Because if you fall off the wagon because you don't enjoy that and it doesn't help you. That's one thing. But if you fall off the wagon because the environment doesn't help you because there's too much stress at the moment and your mind is occupied on under recent diagnosis that you received or something like that. Maybe you need to find a way to go back to those self care helpful habits. Okay, and At the time of recording this episode, it's two days since this is fair, and only today, I came back to my usual regular practice of doing yoga in the morning. So that is that. Now one thing that I have noticed is how we all deal with stress differently. And that's actually a good thing. So in the first couple of days after the silence started, and we were thrown into this reality of running into shelter, and being afraid that it can happen any moment, and we, we change our sleeping arrangements, so you can go into each other quicker, and you know, life changed. And we stopped taking baths, for example, we didn't want to be caught in the middle of bath. And so, you know, we, we noticed the stress all the time. And I noticed how different how we, how differently my two kids were adapting to the situation and dealing with their stress. So for example, my daughter, she's almost four years old, she, at the first day after it happened in the middle of the day, she just fell asleep for a couple of hours, just like that, she just put her head down, and fell asleep for a couple of hours, which was, I think, her way of checking out. And it reminds me of a story about me, when I was seven years old, I took my first flight, we were traveling to Europe. And I guess I was really afraid. And as soon as I set in my seat on the airplane, before we even took off, I just put my head down, and I fell asleep. And I walk a couple of hours later when we landed. So it was mine in her way of checking out. Because when you sleep, usually you don't notice the stress. She also asked to move to a different apartment. Because you know, she's four years old, and she thinks that maybe moving apartments might mean no sirens. So she was thinking about changing, changing surroundings. On the other hand, her brother, almost eight years old now, he really distracted himself with screens with something he enjoys anyway. But even more so and even make sure that he takes his Nintendo Switch to the shelter. So as soon as we were in there, he got it out and started playing. And I think it was his way of not thinking about the the loud booms, we were hearing overhead as missiles, intercepted the rockets and everything was going on. And he also wanted to play a couple of times, again with me, which was kind of an imagination game about zombie apocalypse, where he and I were roaming around the house, searching for zombies and killing them. And that's his way of controlling the bad things, the bad unexpected things. So you can really see how how the mind of a child is trying to adapt to the situation. And and I think As parents, we have to respect that. Because, as I said, I was in my tunnel vision of being really worried. I didn't want to play the zombie apocalypse game. But I realized I try to try to see things from his point of view and realize that it is his way of trying to have some control on this crazy, crazy situation. And he needed me in there as well as, as a grownup as the adult, as the take care of a caretaker, the caregiver, the the safe haven, he really needed me in there. And we have to respect our each other's coping strategies. And we have to respect how each one of us deal with stress. And especially with what you will mean we have to help them work through that. And in that sense, we need to remind ourselves that the mind is really really, really, really, really, really powerful, sometimes too powerful. And the power of imagination, and the power of the mind is really powerful. This is why I think we have to sometimes really focus on how we think because how we think leads to how we feel. And we can affect how we think, and I something, I hear this a lot, especially from different life coaches, that when you have a bad thought you just need to replace it with a good thought and you have to, you know, all this kind of affirmation stuff and I'm not against that. I really like that. But I don't think it's a complete solution. But I think we have to start with noticing how our minds is affecting our body and our our emotions and was a nice A story that my wife told me and I will adopted, just to tell you the story as an example. So a friend of hers told her that her boy, I don't know what age he is, but doesn't really matter. He was really afraid. And he had a hard time falling asleep during those nights. And she didn't know what to do. She tried to calm him down with different methods. And he said that he really wants to take a sleeping pill to come to cool down and to fall asleep. And he's a child, and she didn't want to give him a sleeping pill. So, but she said, Okay, I will give you a sleeping pill. And she took a tablet of an artificial artificial sweetener. That is sweet. And it looks like a pill. And she told him that this is a sleeping pill that sometimes she uses when she can't fall asleep. And as soon as he's going to take it, he will feel sleepier, and he will fall asleep. And that's a boy for that who didn't sleep more than two hours, for a couple of days, he took the pill. And the pill. Yeah, the artificial sweetener. 10 minutes later, he said, Wow, this is really affecting me, I feel so sleepy, and he fell asleep for 12 hours. So you see how the mind is really powerful. And that's there's a very important lesson here. Because as parents really have to notice what we say, and how we act and what we project to the wall in front of our children, because they notice everything. And if even if we don't say that we are scared, even if we don't tell them all the time, whoa, I'm really scared, oh, everything is horrible. But if we act like that, we are jumpy, we are aggressive, we are impatient, they catch up on that. And it will affect their minds. So that's why we need to notice and even if we're scared from within, we kind of need to do something to calm ourselves down. So we can be more we can be calmer with them. Okay, and, and use the power of the mind. Okay, tell them what they need to hear. Sometimes, I don't mean that we have to lie to them, but we can sometimes refrain from telling all the truths, which I see some parents here are having hard time to do. And that means that we we really need to, cannot see things from their point of view. And you have, you know, it differs from every from child to child because you know, your child, you know, what they think, you know, what they like, we know what they they are about. So try to adapt your words, your stories, your ways of being to them. So you can, you can help them distress and focus their minds on what really helps and not on all the scary things that is going on around them. And eventually, the last thing I want to focus on is our roles as parents in these situations, not only for our children, but for society in the world at large. Because as I've called this section in my notes, if we we want parent better the world want me better. And, you know, as parents, I think this is this is my way of looking at things. It's our role as parents to make this world better. Yeah, we can do it in different ways, such as taking care of the environment, maybe eating less meat, you know, doing volunteering, work, whatever. But I'm talking about now about how we're going to change society together and create, hopefully, a better, more empathetic, and more resilient society. Not only for me here in in my city, in the middle of Israel, but for all of us as well. In all of the people who live here, no matter what religion they are always believe or what do you think about me? I want to create a society that that is more empathetic toward each other, and more resilient, when people will fall less and less into the pitfalls of of hate and anger and violence because I think one of the scariest things that happened here was not even related to the Rockets being fired into into the country which was scary or not related to airstrikes in Gaza, which are horrible. During all those 11 days, we saw many cases of mobs roaming the streets and wrecking havoc. And that was right here in our own series. And on both sides, mobs of either Jewish Israelis or Palestinians roaming the streets, usually young men, but probably not only young men, and they will hunting down and looking for members of the other group to attack and you can count the incidents, I think, I don't know if on your fingers, but it's not like it happened all day long and all the time. But yeah, innocent people were dragged out of their cars flagged out for being either Jewish or, or Muslim men depends on which mob I'm talking about. And attacked, for example, in acre, which is a city in northern Israel, which is usually a city that hosts both Arab and Israeli populations. Living together, a Jewish teacher was pulled out of his car and was beaten severely, needing a couple of surgeries after that. And at the same time, the same day in, in a city that is really close to Tel Aviv in the center of Israel, the same thing happened, okay, but the other way around, where a Jewish mob started to attack, an Arab guy was going down the street with his motorcycle. And incidentally, that was caught on live TV. And that was really scary to see. You're seeing right wing extremists on both sides, walking down the streets, vandalizing properties, burning down shops, burning down cars, and groups of mostly Jewish, right wing men attacking TV reporters. Jewish, by the way, not because there are no good reporters who are doing the jobs, they were attacking them viciously, because of a long lasting incitement against the media, for doing its job. And the list really goes on and on. And sometimes the police not being present, sometimes the police is helpless in, you know, my friend that is really, really, really scary. And he just, you just can't help but notice a similar thread between most, if not all of the members of these mobs. As I've said, usually young men, probably in the 20s any Not, not everybody was a young male, but most of them I think were and as a dad, as a psychologist, I have to wonder what the hell happened to them. Those Young Dudes looking for a fight in the streets, beating up innocent people, innocent helpless people. They used to be little boys. Yeah, they used to go to bed hugging a teddy bear at one time in the lives. They used to feel the darkness, I guess some of them. They used to need a hug from their mom or dad. They didn't come into this world like that. So what happened? Why are they like that today? I know. The answer is too complex and big for this question. But we have to ask these questions. And I know that this is an oversimplification. And people are much more complex than that. And you can't blame it all on the parents. But I must think about how the way they were parenting influence how they are today. And of course, I don't know how they were parenting because I don't know them. I cannot diagnose those men or their parents in a way. But I want to say something more general about how we, as parents can educate our children in a way that might prevent this from happening. That might make one of those men be in a situation like that. Let's step away, seeing the other side not as an enemy that you'd have to beat up or does another human being that you might not agree with. But you don't don't feel like beating him up to a pub. I think in order to for to beat someone up like that, in order to treat someone like this piece of emotionless meat that you just need to ruin. You have to forego all of your empathy. You have to not care about what the other side is all about. You have to not care about that is, it's a human being, you have to not see him as a person at all. And I think a lack of empathy is one of the worst things that happened. In our society in, I don't know if it's the last couple of decades, or centuries, because you know, it goes way, way, way back to when children were not regarded as human beings, but as walkers or emotionless creatures. It goes back to when black people were hauled from Africa, to the United States, to the Americas, to be slaves. It goes way back, way, way back. So it's, it's, I guess, it's kind of a flow in the human programming. And

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