I felt fortunate to witness this incredibly awkward moment was because it illustrated to me an important lesson both in human frailty and in human resilience. It was one of the worst possible things that could go wrong -- followed by a surprising and excellent recovery which I saw as tremendously reassuring.
About one in five people have some fear of going to the dentist, often stemming from a traumatic experience. Even general life anxiety can manifest into fear of the dental chair. Many of these people cancel appointments or avoid dental visits altogether. And for those who do come in, it's often when a dental issue is far more advanced and harder to treat.
Everybody has fear. My particular brand of fear usually involves worrying about what people will think of me. Writing publicly about that fear now only punctuates it further. I care way too much about what people think of me and how I'm perceived. I like to say that I'm a recovering approval-seeker, but it's a long road, baby.
The Harper government's attempt to frighten voters should be recognized for what it is -- baseless propaganda designed to woo votes in the midst of an election. While there will undoubtedly be some undesirables in the refugee crowd, our immigration processes are perfectly capable of flagging and filtering out those risks. Canadian lives will not be threatened if we let in Syrian refugees. The irony, however, is that the lives of Canadians and our European friends may well be threatened if we do not. The tide of undocumented refugees will continue to flow into Europe if we fail to provide an alternative exit to those refugees still struggling to survive in camps in Turkey and elsewhere in the Middle East.
Over the past few years, I've written extensively about, and on many occasions have spoken candidly of my struggles with addiction, mental health issues, and sexual violence. I have grown to believe that the greatest antidote to fear is honesty, and it's with this in mind, that I share the following with you. For the past few months, I've engaged in a convoluted relationship with time. It all started out rather innocent. Hours were slipping away from me, and I had absolutely no idea how to account for that lost time.
It's pretty clear that in the public discourse around C-51, there are serious fears on each side. One side is afraid of terrorism infiltrating Canada; the other is afraid of abuse of power through government surveillance. How are we to get back to a real public dialogue, instead of talking past one another?
Conveniently, the fear appeals being made by ISIS, Al Shabab, and the other myriad terror groups we tend to lump together are quite literally textbook examples of fear appeals. What's more, the terrorists and our own government actually work together for a good part of the process, increasing the fear we feel for their own insidious ends.
Face-saving entrepreneurs will call this a "pivot," which basically means, "I was doing this one thing, and now I realize I should be doing this other thing instead." You might feel like a fool for not getting it right the first time around, but I challenge you to find any entrepreneur who got everything right from the get-go.