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Articles in the Defining Root Problems Category

Defining Root Problems »

[5 May 2009 | 2 Comments | ]

How trivial do the disputes among us seem when suddenly, as a world, we are confronted by forces larger – or in the case of a virus- smaller-  that threaten?  Swine flu may be today’s wake up call, but it is far from the only threat we must confront in unison.
In 2009, the planet is warming.  Species are dying.  Ecosystems are changing.  Impacts on food supplies loom.
In 2009, antibiotics are losing their effectiveness.   Scientists testing the oceans are finding trace levels of medicines in the waters, because people throw their …

Defining Root Problems, Eyes of Children »

[4 May 2009 | No Comment | ]

“Of course Jesus was white,” shouted the white kids.

“He was not!” Shouted the black kids.

All of them heatedly looked to me for the answer. The answer was so easy, and it was so enervating to be able to enlighten them.

Eyes of Children, Many Forms of Slavery, Social Entreprenurialism »

[23 Apr 2009 | 3 Comments | ]

 There are eyes of children looking up from sewer grates in Addis Ababa, the capitol city of Ethiopia.  They are not just street children- they are underground children.  They have made their homes in the sewage piping and filthy underground caverns below the city.  They live in dirty tunnels, sewers, caverns and drain holes for the septic waste system, under city streets where thousands walk over them every day without “seeing” them.  The world needs to know this. 

Who will help them?  Can I?
How can we go about our days eating plenty, choosing more expensive clothes than …

Defining Root Problems, Global Creativity, Heroes, Social Entreprenurialism »

[23 Apr 2009 | No Comment | ]

It’s like harmony in our world symphony when needs, ideas, talents and resources come together across cultures! 
 In Africa, where women had to carry water bottles on their heads for miles to bring the water back to the village, an engineer/social entrepreneur  from another country had a GREAT idea that the African villagers put into action!     The idea:  A water pump constructed as a merry-go-round for the village children.  When the children spin on the merry-go-round, the pump automatically pumps out water!   (Check out the CLICK HERE TO SEE THE VIDEO pics of …

Defining Root Problems, Global Creativity, Social Entreprenurialism »

[22 Apr 2009 | One Comment | ]

Imagine the zest, energy, creativity and business acumen of entrepreneurs applied to social issues. Social Entrepreneurs seek to achieve positive change on a large- even global- scale. But what exactly is Social Entrepreneurialism? Differing understanding of the meaning of words is a much overlooked root cause of dissension in our world. We can creep along ignoring our differences in use of language and perceived meaning with only minor irritations bubbling, but the inevitable result of differing interpretations of words and terms is a full scale eruption of dispute at an inopportune moment.

Economic Opportunity, Many Forms of Slavery, The Face of America »

[21 Apr 2009 | 2 Comments | ]

We seek prosperity, better lives for ourselves and for our children.  We access opportunity and measure success by the degree of escalation we have achieved from the point at which we started.   Yet in pursuit of  success,  too many find an endless seeking that is never satisfied.
Is it a disease of America or a disease of Man- this desire for more?  Or is the quest for “more” chiseled into the nature of our existence,  embedded in our DNA- the road map of life?  Ironically, true success and the quenching …

Cultural Differences, Defining Root Problems, Men & Women »

[11 Apr 2009 | 12 Comments | ]

A dog wags its tail when it is happy.  A cat wags its tail when it is angry or upset.   Is it any wonder they don’t get along?
Most of us assume we are understood, that we understand others-  that when words are communicated carefully, accurate meaning is conveyed.  Most of us further believe that our actions speak as plainly as words.   But actions can be fuzzy.
Cultural differences impact actions.  And actions are understood in the context of cultural norms.  Unlike the translation of words, the cultural norms supporting actions are …

Defining Root Problems, Men & Women »

[4 Apr 2009 | 4 Comments | ]

My friend Cello is an immigrant from Nigeria.  She came to the USA 15 years ago with her husband to begin a new life in a place she truly believed had streets paved of gold.  What she found was a place without gold streets, but with tremendous opportunity- only for those willing to do tremendously hard work.
“Immigrants need to know how hard they will have to work!  There is no safety net here!” she says on the rough days.  On the good days, she looks proudly at the beautiful family …

Defining Root Problems, Economic Opportunity, Many Forms of Slavery »

[3 Apr 2009 | No Comment | ]

So many things in life are insidious. They creep up, unnoticed.  In the beginning: normalcy.  A range of “acceptable” that is generally agreed by the majority of a society or culture.   Then, as the boundaries of normalcy are pushed, ever so slowly, the centering point for what is “normal” shifts, with motion barely perceptible, till one day the recollection of “what used to be” creates a sense of aghast over the extremity of the change.  Like shifts in acceptable hemlines over time (one day the knees must not show and …