Monday, October 16, 2017

Pep talk.

I get the impression that an increasing number of people feel depressed and overwhelmed by negative news stories, so switch off. Trouble is that that leaves fewer people to challenge and campaign, while the perpetrators of abuse, destruction, corruption and other negative influences gain in confidence.

It's quite hard work, being well-informed. You need to trust your sources and have a wide range of them. You need to think independently. Many people choose to ignore what doesn't directly affect themselves, which is understandable.

So maybe it's good to remind the politically-detached of some facts.

  • There's a huge amount of good stuff going on, but it took effort by the committed, and they deserve our support.
  • It's natural to feel that there's not much you can do, so why bother? But mass movements that achieve change, such as an end to apartheid, civil rights in America, the fights for enfranchisement, have all succeeded through many small contributions.
  • Future generations may question why we didn't do enough to make the world a better place. "I couldn't deal with it", or "I couldn't be bothered", aren't really good enough, are they?
  • So what can we do? Outnumber the prejudiced and destructive by challenging hatred, discrimination and ignorance. Write letters, to the press, politicians, local and national government, businesses and powerful organisations - it's how Amnesty works. Get involved. Do something.
  • Remember that most of us are free to express our opinion and live our lives without fearing violence - "Sticks and stones may break our bones but names will never hurt us" - so develop a thick skin.
  • Have fun and enjoy life while you can, while being grateful to all those people who fought for your privileges.

Oh, and some poor unfortunate souls don't have a sense of humour but I recommend cultivating one, if you can. It helps.

No comments: