I am now calling the need for Pro Bono Legal Aid and general on-going Financial and Legal Education at the local level by the name of Adulting Ed. This concept of Adulthood is part of Phase II of the Four Freedom’s Project, currently in Phase I.
How do we define who is recognized as an Adult, and why?
Previously, I used 6 criteria to define adulthood. Each prospective adult must be able to:
2. defend herself both emotionally and physically (and financially as well),
3. think critically and build logical arguments,
4. understand statistics,
5. drive manual (stick-shift) cars. (Also, knowing how to ride bicycles and horses can be useful survival skills.)
These all imply the most important criterion:
6. accepting responsibility to think independently,
taking responsibility for one’s actions and for preventing exploitation.
Personally, I have spent a good deal of time studying each of
the above items, and also reflecting on my own principles. I
believe this reflection to be part of both #3 and #6, as each
adult must know the basis of his or her life principles, if he or
she is to live a fulfilling and stable life. Not only meaning, as
Dr. Viktor Frankl described, but pondered one’s
principles and deciding what gives life meaning, is crucial.
Thus, I believe that the final test for being recognized as an
adult should be to teach someone else a necessary life skill.
For example, swimming, or writing. While across various cultures and societies, adulthood may have to be defined in ways that suit that society, it is also important, in this globalised and highly mobile world, for every adult to be equally able to manage the sorts of transport demanded of him or her. That means that women must be given equal access to cars in parts of Africa where the men are allowed and expected to drive, and vehicles must be available, adapted for various levels of ‘ableism,’ or preferably driverless, where infrastructure permits.
It is not that women who cannot swim or drive are not women, as they are clearly defined as women using other criteria, in their own societies. The problem is that to be capable of meeting the challenges that a mobile society demands of adults, and I mean all around the globe, it is neither safe nor fair to lower the expectations, and thus the actual capabilities, of women in, say, Africa. Or under the Taliban -girls are deliberately prevented from becoming full adults by the denial of education, skills that would save their lives (such as Kuwaiti women driving during the Gulf War, or the many women who drowned disproportionately to men in the Indonesian Tsunami in 2006).
This is not a definition of current adulthood, persay. These points, 1-6, are not meant to define who is NOW an adult, but rather, who should be able to claim the title of adulthood in an equal (yes, IDEAListic) world. This is meant to define an adult in a world where we all have the same opportunities and expectations. Persons with physical handicaps have been able to drive with specially adapted vehicles. Why is this not universally available?
As with food, water, shelter, and solar energy, all of the knowledge and skills available in the Developed World must be shared with the Developing world on an even-handed basis. Then, and only then, can we all consider ourselves adults.
This Adulthood Challenge is described in an earlier post.
This Challenge is meant to be a good bit more than just a project, or even a few hundred hours of volunteering. The idea is to provide a significant challenge that will last long enough for the pre-adult to feel justifiably proud of the accomplishment. An accomplishment that defines the person as a worthy adult.
So, it turns out that … More on my continuing striving with Adulting next week, friends:
Yassas, γεια σας! Salût ! Nos vemos! Görüşürüz! ! שָׁלוֹם
Action Items in support of literacy and hope that you can take right now:
1.) Imagine two different reasons that you would consider yourself to be (or not to be) an adult.
2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, if you don’t mind.
Dear Readers, any additional ideas toward learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning as part of on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness, #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?
Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport