Editorial: #WhyNotUs should be the collective mindset of our community

When it comes to the quintessence of America, the sandlot registers almost on the same level as apple pie. It is where the dreams of millions of boys to play professional baseball are cultivated. Of course, most will not even get close. But that sobering truth did not stop a dozen Little Leaguers who hail one county to our west from asking the simple question, Why Not Us?

Refusing to be confined to statistical probability, and daring to believe that they had what it takes to achieve the impossible, a dozen middle school boys from Red Land became the United States champions of Little League Baseball. And although they fell just short of winning the World Series, their simple motto of #WhyNotUs should serve as a point of introspection for all of us.

Rarely does a phrase so simple encapsulate a meaning so profound. Why, not, and us are three of the most common words in the English language, but the unique call to action they imply when used in tandem is something we all too often shrug off. In fairness, it is easy just to think, "Why me? Someone else will do it." But when we reverse that implication to "Why not me?", it becomes harder to justify inaction. And it was with that mentality that the Little League team from Red Land shared a lesson from which we can all learn.

The mascot of Lampeter-Strasburg School District is the Pioneer, and surely that alone conveys a great challenge to buck the presupposition of maintaining the status quo in favor of blazing a trail that honors the spirit of the Pioneer our Alma Mater insists shall "ne'er die."

Last week, we humorously discussed the importance of setting good habits. In all seriousness, habits define who we are. We challenge you, this year, to establish a habit of "Why not me?" and "Why not us?".

When a club needs volunteers to pull off a fundraiser to help those who need it ...

Why not me? Why can't I offer a helping hand?

When the substitute teacher comes to the front of the room and is fumbling around with the projector, obviously needing help that no one is keen to provide ...

Why not me? Why can't I be the one to do the right thing?

When there's a questionable call at a football game and the temptation is there to break into a profane chorus like other student sections ...

Why not us? Why can't we be a beacon of sportsmanship, challenging others to rise to our standard rather than sinking to theirs?

And when you hear that across the state, test scores are down and our schools are failing ...

Why not us? Why can't we demonstrate the value of hard work and dedication to learning and growing?

The truth is we can do all of these things, but when a cultural attitude of inaction -- a desire to discuss rather than to do, to complain rather than to fix -- stanches our ability to live up to our fullest potential, it is time to remind ourselves who we are -- the Pioneers of Lampeter-Strasburg.

And if 12 Little Leaguers can inspire the country with a simple attitude of #WhyNotUs, imagine what 1000 high schoolers -- or better yet, the 23,000 people who live in L-S -- can do.

This editorial reflects the collective opinion of the LSNews.org Editorial Board. Its lead author was Benjamin Pontz, editor-in-chief of LSNews.org. The opinions within it do not necessarily reflect the official position of the Lampeter-Strasburg School District. If you would like to suggest a topic for an editorial or have any questions or concerns, please email us at lspioneernews@gmail.com. Thank you.


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