Oh the wonderful things my daughter says. We were having a very intense (pleasant, not contentious) discussion on a topic both confounding and current, when she summed up the situation in fabulous fiber artist form.
While a person can sign up for hazardous service in the military, police force, or other the other various service professions where life may be placed at risk, they cannot sign up to be the ones to die during a pandemic. The very notion that people could sacrifice themselves in such a way is ridiculous. Statements of this nature* promote the appalling belief that the vulnerable are expendable.
The vulnerable are not expendable. They are the ones we fight for, risk our lives for, and go to great lengths to defend from all harm.
*Texas Lt. Governor voices what many may feel, but what goes against the advice of experts.
Good intentions do not justify bad actions. Neither will they absolve accountability for the harm that is done.
Sometimes we live in a bubble. Truthfully, there are times when we need the bubble. Then there are times when we need the bubble to be popped so that we can see more of what is going on than we might be comfortable with on a daily basis.
It is easy to leave the work to others. It is easy to convince ourselves that if we focus on our own backyard, we need not trouble ourselves with the wider world. How often do we recognize the good work others are doing so that we can focus only on our backyard? Do we only notice these globally minded workers when they become embroiled in controversy? When we find ourselves at odds with one aspect of their work, do we condemn all the other good work?
Life is a set of scales, often comparing the positive and negative in our lives. We must evaluate the items tilting the scales in one direction or the other. Even if we need bubble time, we can’t forget that the scales will still need adjusting when the bubble pops. We should never allow our scales to tilt heavily in an unsettling direction due to the weight of unsavory choices made by others but defended due to our own desire to fit in.
Bubble time, the time to recharge and retreat from the fray, is occasionally necessary. Just don’t make that bubble so impenetrable that it won’t pop in time for your life scale to be adjusted before the negative side weighs you completely down.
I keep asking myself about the difference between Facebook and the old fashioned social world were I was always advised to choose my friends wisely. Guilt by association is a real thing in some societal circles.
Do we follow the same rules in a social media world? Do we remain Facebook friends with those we would never want to socialize with in person?
If we ignore behavior on Facebook, or things we find unsavory, are we enabling or validating the people with whom we associate any more or less than we do in the workplace, the school, the store, the neighborhood?
Unfollow, restrict, unfriend, block: the value of remaining FB friends versus the value of separation.
It is something to ponder.
A nation’s success is dependent on its people having an understanding of what makes it successful. Authoritarian governments seek success through suppressing information, and through spreading misinformation. In a democratic republic where the people have the right to vote, it is vital for information to be shared and debated. Discourse, preferable civil discourse, is essential for national success. However, too many people, who enjoy the benefits of a democratic republic, seek to hide from discourse. For whatever reasons they may give, at the end of the day, they are seeking to hide from the very responsibility they have in the maintenance of their nation and its success.
It is interesting to see so many supporters of capitalism and small government cringe.
Capitalistic exploitation of cheap resources and labor has provided a stable livelihood for many who have never felt exploited because of the protections their grandfathers voted for when robber barons last ruled.
Realization that they have become this cheap labor causes worry to build among these supporters of small government. They realize that their livelihood is controlled, not just by the modern robber barons of their own nation, but by the robber barons of foreign nations.
They realize they might need protection from the government they believe is too big.
A cringeworthy reality.
Be that someone who makes the difference.
Mob violence is never restricted to one side or the other. In the modern world, the town square is often replaced by social media groups. The pitch forks and torches of the past may have been replaced by the written word or photograph, but do not doubt that the modern version of tar and feathers damages individuals and businesses just as much, if not more so than, it did in the past. Looking the other way and hoping the furor will die down does not absolve or protect us from the tragedy when the mob takes action. While we can try to insulate our groups and personal pages from such behavior, we cannot hide from the mob, at least not permanently.
Article discussing how mob mentality is affecting the quilting world.
It requires more than just voting in order to practice informed citizenship. You cannot only tune-in every 2-4 years and hope that you’ll have more than a narrow understanding of the issues.
The world is complex and deferring your civic responsibility to others isn’t going to make you satisfied with the actions of the government.
You might not be a bad citizen if this is what you choose to do, but you won’t be an informed citizen.