Last night, I had a long talk with my 14-year old son about the current unheaval in our economy. For both of my sons, I talk freely with them about any and all issues. From economics to politics to religion, anything is fair game in my house. All I ask is that they have an understanding of the issues and back your position with facts not just opinion.
Anyway, John and I were talking about how the financial crisis will affect our family. He is understandably concerned about the future. My (hopefully) reassuring message to him was that we are in a major turning point in our country. This turning point is very similar to others in history: October, 1929; Pearl Harbor; the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki; the assasination of JFK, Watergate, Falling of the Berlin Wall, etc.
With historical understanding of present conditions, you will see that ultimately our country will prevail. I told him that with every change comes an opportunity to grow and fix the problems that face us. If life were boring, there would be no challenges. Without challenges, there would be no greatness.
Of course, these words come from a person who has be pretty conservative in his financial dealings in the past few years. As a result, we are reasonably prepared to deal with the economic changes. There are many in our economy who are not. For them, the changes are terrifying and they may need help from their friends and neighbors.
My final message to my son is that we are all in this together. Hopefully, we as a nation can come together to deal with the crisis and resulting economic downturn. We have done this before, and we can do it again.