So big government is destroying our economy, big agriculture is destroying our health, Hollywood is destroying our girls’ self-esteem, and corporate [insert country of choice here] is creating a greedy, consumeristic culture. Or so I’m told.
McDonald’s is making us fat.
The public schools are making our kids dumb.
The media is obliterating objectivity.
Everywhere we look, we see broken systems. It’s a problem of the human condition: humans are imperfect, therefore anything we create/maintain/build/do will be imperfect as well. Global unity and harmony may be a truly worthwhile dream, but it isn’t yet a reality. So where does that leave us? What can we do when our children are at huge risks for diabetes and our money is nearly worthless? When we’re caught in the machine of consumerism because consuming is how you survive in this world?
We stop to remember that lying is a cooperative act.
Maybe the media is in bed with big business. Maybe the government is messed up on education. Maybe the fast food industry really does want us all to be obese. Maybe we do have to be vigilant about what we allow in our lives and in our minds. But we also must start taking responsibility for ourselves. If we’re tired of the way the world works, we have to make changes. Not later, but now. We have to unplug, detox, disconnect, jump ship for a while. We have to start educating ourselves, and stop making excuses.
We have to realize that we’re the problem.
If we stop buying unhealthy, irresponsible food, large corporations will have to start selling healthier, more ethical stuff, or lose everything (which they will not risk.) If we start homeschooling our kids, or passing more charter school acts, the individual public schools may have to step it up to keep pace. We cast our votes with every dollar we spend, and with every change of the channel. For as long as Snooki can make a paycheck from Twitter, she’ll keep tweeting. If tomorrow all of her followers stopped listening, she’d have to get a real job and stop making a career out of teaching our young girls to be idiots.*
So yes, as a culture we have problems. But maybe, just maybe, we as individuals are a bigger part of it than we care to admit. And that’s a good thing, because it means that we – not the government or corporations or celebrities, but all of us regular joes and janes – hold the key to the solution.
Let’s take our world back.
*I obviously don’t know Snooki personally, so my comments here are in regard to her public choices, and are not personal. I’m sure she’s a lovely girl. I just wish she (and her fellow reality stars) would act like it.