Al Cashion: A lesson I needed to learn again
Some lessons must be learned immediately after teaching them.
Yeah. That’s what I said. Last week ‘s prose came out my nose. (Essential Sequential Linearity)
Actually, there were a number of lessons I thought I had learned that went back into the furnace this week then were removed from the fire, placed on the anvil and subjected to the hammer to be shaped once more.
I carelessly wounded a great number of good people. I hurt the heart of the God who loves them. I am a debtor to Moffat County School District at large and individually not to mention the community of Craig.
I wrote last week of a progressive linearity of choices when I have injured others. A progression of choices with which to make amends.
Confession – Apology – Excuses – Spin.
When I have injured others, I have but one choice if I desire to bring any sense of redemption, if I actually care about the ones I hurt, if I value truth, if I want the world to be a better place.
I wanted to spin my wrongdoing in the editorial about the Moffat County School District. I desperately searched for a lie that covered my guilt. I didn’t want my reputation hurt. I didn’t want to be talked about, cursed about or belittled by people I believe to be big.
I was somehow able to walk past this Spin but I quickly started to view Excuses as the Promised Land.
As I said last week, I am quite good at building excuses. But the problem with excuses is they are just well-conceived lies that attempt to evade the consequences of guilt and/or shame.
My own words from last week came back to haunt me and so I ran from excuses and headed toward the humility of Apology.
Crossing from Excuses to Apology is a translation from dark to light, from pride to humility and from broadcasting pain to taking my medicine. An Apology can be quite sufficient when the honest explanation is, “Oops.”
I landed happily on Apology. I was satisfied that I had travelled the distance from Spin past Excuses and arrived at Apology. But, the call asked one more step.
Apology can be humbling. Confession will humiliate.
Confession is the step one must take if one has wounded with intent or has been so careless as to have wounded when it could have been easily prevented.
I’m at journey’s end. I’ve arrived at Confession. Here goes.
I confess to you, Administrators. I hurt you in more ways than I can perceive.
I confess to you, Teachers. My carelessness broke your spirit, caused deep anger and took the joy from your job.
I confess to you, Students, I made your teacher’s job much more difficult.
I confess to you, Craig, in carelessness, I did not protect our peace.
I’m sorry. I am asking for your forgiveness.
I am in no position to ask, but I will. If a description of Monday’s meeting progressing to Wednesday’s editorial was defined, it would be “a comedy of errors.” Except ... there was nothing humorous.
Words did print. Black and white. No excuses. I can assure you there was far more mistakes and stupidity and carelessness than animus.
Bryce Jacobson is a good man, a true man who desires nothing but good for Craig and has become a good friend. He is interested in truth. Not your side. Not my side. He strives for truth.
A portion of blame may go to him, but not for willful spite.
His young writing staff has more wisdom than I did at their age. Much more. They work hard and know it or not, they have been your heroes on pieces that magnified the good that is dear to you. And you may not have even caught their name or called with, “Thanks.”
I ask you, please, if you will, to consider that sometimes a perfect storm of human error can gather, meet and create a horrible mess. I know I never would have wanted to bring this kind of pain to a town I love so much and people I love so much.
Please forgive me. And please forgive my friends. No one wanted to hurt you.