It goes without saying that 2016 has been one of the craziest years anyone has ever seen. It has defied expectation in every way possible!
Not only has it been absolutely unorthodox, but incredibly unfortunate as well. Celebrity deaths, ecological destruction, social/racial tensions and unprofessionalism in politics have made this year disheartening beyond comprehension.
Times like these typically breed revolutionaries; stoke some sort of fervor that makes the PO’d actually do something. I started thinking about this after the passing of Castro.
He was of a tougher ilk; regardless of how one felt about him and what he had accomplished, he recognized that sometimes, that in order to create change, there needs to be an unsettling impetus, and sometimes, that’s a revolution.
Now, I’m not advocating violent means in order to solve problems. Because what some people consider a problem, others might not. Granted, there are some issues which are universally good or bad (like the “death” of the Great Barrier Reef), but issues remain largely subjective.
And we don’t want people to commit violence in the name of goals/ideals that may be ill-conceived or not thoroughly assessed/examined.
But that isn’t to say people should remain apathetic concerning the goings-on of life. If anything, the primary tool for initiating change and spreading information has actually hindered it the most: computers/the Internet.
Instead of instilling change or compelling people to take action, we participate in biased voyeurism, getting raw and uncensored perspectives riddled with ignorance and cognitive dissonance. We accept that truth will be adulterated either way, and instead of trying to find the unspoiled truth, we settle for whatever disillusioned reality is the most appealing.
Liking and sharing posts and tweets raises awareness, but it doesn’t solve anything! It’s like advertising a product without even having a product to sell. Like overhyping something that doesn’t exist. We think we are what we entertain. Because we harbor slight interest in weighty topics and subjects, we should be considered lofty and important ourselves.
But where’s the action, the application of stances and beliefs? That’s what really counts, what makes us who we are. Provides legitimacy to causes we attach ourselves. Otherwise we just seem discontented and whiny. Why should we be awarded any credence? We are woefully undeserving.
What’s going on with the pipeline on the Native American reservation in North Dakota would normally inspire much more unrest than it has, as would the water crisis in Flint, Mich. We think just because there is all sorts of unfiltered information that we have unregulated access to, and because we’re somehow “woke,” that we can get away with remaining relatively complacent. Having knowledge of an injustice and still choosing to do nothing is not a solution. If anything, it’s the opposite.
We’ve all presumably been subjected to anti-bullying classes in elementary and middle school. And what did we learn in there? By doing nothing, by being bystanders, we only perpetuate the problem.