Available for Interviews: Dr. Hope Umansky
Dr. Hope Umansky is an American Culture College Professor with a PhD in Clinical Psychology. She is also an author on educational reform, equity, inclusion, and social justice.
What Dr. Hope can say in an interview on
Uvalde, an educator and mother’s point of view:
“. . . I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart. What is done cannot be undone, but one can prevent it from happening again.” –Anne Frank, The Diary of Anne Frank, 1947)
- Seeing the truth of the Uvalde failure of grown officers to save kids with over an hour to do so—as an educator, and a mother, I cannot help but think of this quote of Anne Franks.
- At the Uvalde board meeting last night, the parents who will be grieving for the rest of their lives, whose hearts are forever shattered said to the board and the politicians, the same question Anne Frank asks: When will enough be enough?
- What is done cannot be undone. Perhaps we are too late to prevent it from happening again? My heart shatters at the answer as it struggles to hold on to hope in my heart.
- The heroes of this story are the parents and the children calling for help because now as the footage shows that those children were just on the other side of the door of officers with guns who could have taken this man out at any time but waited for an order that never came. One hero of Uvalde who needs recognition is the mother who broke in anyway, after being in handcuffs and released, to save her own two children. We watch the footage in sheer terror recognizing that any of those kids could have been our kids at any time, literally at any minute with how things are going.
- The Uvalde footage is so shocking because it demonstrated not just a failure in communication and leadership, but how numb law enforcement seems to have become to life. Is this who we are now? That we have idle time, not urgency, to save 7-9-year-olds? As an educator and mother, I already have been sickened by the ubiquitous “thoughts and prayers” after every shooting, including school shootings. Educators take a personal oath to value, nurture, and cultivate the spirit of the humans with whom they are charged to educate.
- If valuing innocent human lives over one’s own—if taking an oath that states that human lives are sacred and yet these tragic events still happen, how do we hold on to these values and still believe people are good at heart? Can we? Seeing the carnage every day, every week, this has become an existential question to wrestle with. Have our values changed and the world around us reflects that, or have our values stayed the same and the world around us has been turned upside down and shaken like a snow globe?
- Anne Frank declares, “It’s a wonder I haven’t abandoned all my ideals, they seem so absurd and impractical” (Frank, 1947). Yet, she asserts, she still clings to them. My values, not just as a human being but as a lifetime educator and mother, have not changed. The world has. I am struggling to hold on. I am not clinging to them anymore. I question if I can ever step foot in a physical classroom again. No one is coming to help you. If the last few years have not made it clear, everyone, it seems, is now on their own. The Uvalde footage proves it—no one cares about your children or your life as much as you. No one is coming to help. After a roaring pandemic, the kids are back in school and they are not safe there, and it is not because of Covid. Our society is not safe from itself.
- There is no simple answer. The issues are so insidious, so ubiquitous, so pernicious. We are living in a country that has entirely failed to address mental health and an entire lacking mental health infrastructure before the world went really topsy turvy in March of 2020. With the pandemic, poverty, massive deaths, prolonged disruption of daily life, the DAILY shootings disrupting everything joyful about our culture or even banal such as going to the grocery store even, George Floyd and BLM, Roe v Wade and the country . . . with an absolutely shameful scarcity of resources for mental health services, and a total lack of training and awareness in the public and with authorities, increasing climate catastrophes, global instability, war, drug overdoses, inflation, violent crimes, and on and on and on . . . the country has broken. There is a long way from here to healing.
Interview: Dr. Hope Umansky
Dr. Hope Umansky, a.k.a. Dr. Hope, is an American Culture College Professor and an author on educational reform, equity, inclusion, social justice & American culture. Her column, Dr. Hope On Point represents the intersection of historical context and popular culture, with an emphasis on the complex human experience.
Hope Umansky, PhD, offers a unique psychology-based perspective on the questions and events that weigh heavy on our hearts and minds.
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