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When my sister was young, she wrote a letter to a kid, about her age, who was in juvenile detention awaiting trial for murder (he was later found not guilty). He wrote back, “It’s so hard to be good here.”

Most of us aren’t living in the prison system, but it can still be pretty tough to be good.

Some people will tell you it’s most important to be smart.
Some people will tell you it’s most important to be cool.
Some people will tell you it’s most important to be successful.
Some people will tell you it’s most important to be tough.

If it’s most important to be smart, you’ll do what it takes to show how smart you are, even if that means making others look stupid.

If it’s most important to be cool, you’ll do whatever the cool people do, whether it makes any sense or not.

If it’s most important to be successful, it makes sense to cheat, as long as you don’t get caught.

If it’s most important to be tough, you’d better not show gentleness or compassion or show sadness or fear.

It can be hard to be good, unless goodness is the goal. So how can we restructure our communities to make sure that it is?

photo credit: chrisinplymouth via photopin cc

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