Another day, another attack. We’ve read and witnessed thousands of shootings throughout the United States. This time an attack on Ohio State University, and while our hearts ache once again for the victims of senseless violence we need to continue to push forward in ensuring this world becomes a safer, more compassionate place.
We’ve pushed for progressive change in the past, only to have those motions struck down by those within the deep pockets of the gun lobby. Many people believe our country is broken because of this. I understand your frustration, your anger, and your fear for what our country has become. Many of you may feel helpless towards bringing about change to our country.
To all those who feel helpless and angry:
We all need to take a hard look at ourselves: Democrat, Republican, black, white, Hispanic, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, or whoever you are. Let me be the first to say that, yes, our system is broken, but what have we done to try and fix these issues besides protesting in the streets, falling for the same political double speak, and staying home on election days?
If we want to change the system, we need to be the system. The only way we can do that is by becoming active within our government. For those of you who say our government is broken beyond repair and cannot be fixed, I say this: when was the last time you voted or helped get out the true facts of an issue rather than relying on one biased media source after another?
We cannot simply blame the system and assume it will just fix itself because we’re angry. We need to educate ourselves on the truth and become unbiased in our approach to problems and solutions. No, everyone cannot be happy, but I believe if we begin to treat our fellow man and woman like the human beings they are rather than dividing them into different sects – whether it be religious, gender or ethnicity – our country – our world – can indeed become a better place.
Yes, I’m angry, and many others are even angrier, but the anger I saw in the crowds when their answer wasn’t given cannot be their sole action. That anger can be transformed into more than just anger. It can be transformed into change. Communities of color are not making these problems up at all, but I know that if we all come together regardless of whatever sociology has separated us into we can conquer wonders. We have the chance and ability to, but we continuously let anger take control and guide us backward in nearly every instance where progress has risen and our anger triumphs over it.
We can shout with anger, but shout at those who deserve it: the system, Congress, the ones who gave this military might to those who don’t need it and overused it. But we need to turn that shouting into actual action we can use to change our society. We have the manpower, we just need to get out and do it. Voting, challenging candidates regardless of the corrupt issue of big money in politics and doing more than just protesting in the streets. Get involved in your local community, whether it be the local community board, PTA, or any other local portion of politics. Support candidates you believe in and get out their message, but understand the qualms from those who do not support your views. We are only a broken system if we refuse to listen to one another.
Get in contact with your local representative, councilperson, or senator. Go to this website to find all your elected officials. You can even go here, here, or here to see how they voted on any piece of legislation.
Call them, don’t send letters, write to them on Facebook or Twitter, or email them. Research has shown that physically calling their office and leaving messages over and over will give you a much better chance of reaching your elected official. And if you have friends who share the same beliefs that you do then bombard them with phone call after phone call. Let these individuals know that they answer to you and not to those who slip extra money into their pockets.
Take that action, mobilize it into true political clout – true unbiased clout – and you can overcome even the most ruthless of tyrants.
We used to live in an age called the Middle Ages. You know why we don’t anymore? Because we took it upon ourselves as a human species to move forward and be better than we were.
And guess what? We can be so much better than we are now.
Now, “let us dedicate ourselves to what the Greeks wrote so many years ago: to tame the savageness of man and make gentle the life of this world.”