Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Today's Musings and a Polite Request

How does one stay informed and involved while simultaneously not feeling riled up and helpless all the time?

I've been struggling a lot with this lately. I don't want to check out from social media and the news and current events, but I also feel upset and bothered all the time.  Even when I'm not actively thinking of the new presidential administration and its enablers in Congress and around the country, and all the horrible things they're doing, I frequently get that feeling of knowing there's something to be upset about and momentarily not knowing what it is, before suddenly remembering.

So how do I balance being an engaged and informed citizen, while also not feeling like my personal life is being affected by it? Every day I consider logging out from social media and staying away from the news, simply so I can just live and enjoy my life without worrying about "big issues." But I also know that checking out and burying your head in the sand doesn't solve anything, and in fact makes you an accomplice.

I was convicted recently by a post I saw on Twitter about this issue. It was condensed into 140 characters, but it basically said: Remember that history class you were in, or that museum you walked through, or that movie you watched which talked about some horrible historical period in the past, and you thought to yourself that if YOU had been alive during that time, YOU would've done so and so and such and such. Well, this is your historical period, and what you do now is what you would've done. 

This hit me like a ton of bricks because I have done that very thing. I've read about something or watched a movie and thought: If I had been alive during that time, I'd have been out on the streets. I'd have been writing and talking and letting everyone know about what was going on. I wouldn't have just sat idly by and watched while the world burned down around me.

What about you? Would you have buried your head in the sand? Would you have just gone along with it because there was nothing you could do? Or would you have stood up to injustice, fought corruption, and taken an active role in stopping it from happening?

Would you have ignored segregation and the disenfranchisement of blacks in the South? Would you have ignored the evils of slavery? Would you have just gone about your business with your head down in 1930s Germany or Italy? Would you have just focused on yourself and your family while Vietnam raged?

So I feel convicted about staying involved and informed - it's literally the least I can do. But I also can't stand feeling riled up and upset so much.

I ask for your advice for balancing this and thank you in advance.

No comments:

Serene Musings Books of the Year, 2005-2015