Recently I responded to an article by a good man, but an angry man. I wrote that ,while I loved his article for its passion and well parsed verbiage I worried that it contained only negatives, expressed only his frustrations, and that, however true those expressions might be, however accurate was his assessment of the current situation it was not enough, something was lacking.
This got me thinking, frankly, and looking at the articles and blogs on the web in a different light, and a little push from an editor resulted in this.
Article after article containing only negatives, however accurate and truthful they may be, and many of them are quite such, leaves folks despairing and
given over to hopelessness. We need folks willing to act, to effect change,whether that be working to save the Democratic party if that is your bent, or working to help create a third party, or just writing letters to your elected officials, whatever as long as we are motivated to do something.
In response to such beliefs I have received some interesting correspondence. Some have led to interesting discussions, some have been diatribes from fools, frankly, and some have been thoughtful criticisms from folks with differing views of the same issues. Some few have led to a continuing dialogue which I hope proves fruitful. In a case or two I have descended into rudeness in response to a vast self centered ignorance, a failing I hope to correct in my dotage.
A recent letter from Ralph Nader, posted at DemocracyRising.us for those interested, spoke to the old debate between Aldous Huxley and George Orwell, in which Orwell postulated that, ultimately, that which we hate will destroy us, while Huxley believed that that which we love would be our ultimate undoing. In a way I can relate that to our current political situation.
Where Orwell feared an oppressive regime, using propaganda and fear and endless war to control the masses Huxley perhaps was the most prescient seeing that control coming , not from deception or fear, but from disinterest and preoccupation with trivialities. How then do we break through this shell of indifference, how then do we motivate our fellow citizens to help end this travesty of Democracy we have become?
We do it, not with anger but with motivational techniques, we do it with positivism and endless enthusiasms, we do it by taking first a good hard look at ourselves and our politics, or our lack thereof and change for the better. We do not yell at our neighbors we befriend them and slowly and quietly insinuate our truths. We do not endlessly rant at the horrific (sorry) leadership of the Democratic party that has left us alone in our struggle we continually suggest change and differing strategies to them and work, perhaps, to found a new and better political party. We write , we email, we march, we work and we work and we smile and we remain positive above all. We cannot convince people by depressing them, ultimately we must energise them through a shared vision of a better tomorrow.
It is not through anger that we will triumph,it is not rage that will see us through it is enthusiasm and energy, it is a positive vision of a better nation and a peaceful planet that will make our work both easier and inevitable. This , I believe wholeheartedly, is the way to re-engage our uncaring electorate and to end the dictatorship in our political parties that fails to do right. Angry people seldom work together long, we must do this, a world is counting on us.