Progress seems elusive in the age of Trump. There is so much emphasis on going back. But time does not move backward. There is also a simple and telling sign of progress that needs to be underlined. It is the progress of redefining the four letter word "help." I do not think anyone has actually spelled it out. but it seems entirely credible.

Help is education and enabling

You know the cliche abut teaching someone to fish as a means of combating hunger. There are all sorts of variations. All of them say help is not a one time fix. It is a form of education that enables.

Help makes possible a DIY solution. This is so obvious I feel almost embarrassed to say anything. But we do need more attention to values, They are what makes progress after all.

Has Congress heard? Has Trump?

What if we actually did see help as education and enabling? We might create millions of new jobs to fill the huge blanks in our world where there is no education and no enabling. Coaching is an effort to fill some blanks, but these efforts ignore the fact that we need government to make things apply to all,

People who desperately need education and enabling number in the many millions. Jobs are going begging. Has Congress heard?

Do policy makers understand?

We have a justice system that should be helping people who have gone wrong go right.

In some cases, these people do not belong in our bulging prisons. They are nonviolent. If they were rich they never would have ended up behind bars.

In the case of violent prisoners inclined toward gangs and more violence, we should convert the current profitable prison-industrial business into a child development effort. We should help those who have violence problems early.

We should reach them when they can be educated and enabled. It is never too late, of course, but we seem not to have reached policymakers with the message about how help is being short-changed.

These students have a better idea of what help is than many policy-makers.

Did Jesus have the wrong idea?

You would think because tons of religious people want to move backward Jesus was also about making things great again. But that was not the case. Jesus was forward-looking. He said you need to love enemies and all others. He added that the best form of love requires self-awareness, He said love your neighbor as yourself.

Jesus seems to feel if you do that you will be truly loving because you are truly loved by the same one Jesus says loves everyone.

Help is something that should be on our to-do list. It is a better policy than building up the military and investing in bombs. We need to think long-term. We need to go forward.