Friday, October 24, 2014

What's Wrong with the World



Lately I find myself almost unwilling to turn on the news. When I overcome this aversion and flip it on anyway, I often end up wishing I had not. Negativity reigns, and one story after another delivers enough bad joss to leave me asking myself two questions: (1) What's wrong with the world? and (2) When on earth is it going to get back on track? Even worse, the list of "wrong" things is growing so fast that I am increasingly convinced the answer to question #2 may be "Never."

No wonder my blood pressure is on the rise! Ebola, ISIS, health care crisis, Congress run amok, war, lame duck (getting lamer all the time)…and no immigration reform or budget balancing in sight. What's a concerned citizen to do?

Well, one thing we should not do (though the prospect sorely tempts me at times) is throw up our hands in dismay and surrender to the prevailing tide. As Americans, we still have a voice, and we need to use it. With elections in sight, we should speak our minds by voting our conscience. This means knowing enough about the candidates and issues to ensure that we have a conscience to vote! Knee-jerk voting along party lines can no longer suffice; we must analyze each person and proposition closely in order to make the best possible judgments––informed judgmentsand not just informed by a biased news station or celebrity, but by our own research. When no candidate or proposal satisfies, we can identify and support the lesser of two evils, using the next two or four years to keep track of how frequently he or she represents us well and how frequently we are let down. If we are let down too often, we can react by letting our representatives down when the next election rolls around.

Of course, it's not ideal when the field of candidates makes us want to run full speed in the other direction. Election reform is definitely called for, reform that makes it possible for people to be elected to public office without having to sell their souls to the highest bidder or pretend to be someone they're not in order to get financing. Some civility in campaigning would be nice too, so that decent and relatively "normal" people might actually be willing to step up to the plate and lend us their talents. Equally appealing, what if opponents quit trying to label and villainize each other (because we, the citizens, refused to be distracted by that) and focused on the issues at hand? What if we did the same?

Enough said. I know there's no magic bullet; there rarely is. But I also know that hard times are probably here to stay. If we don't rise to the challenge, we will keep falling––and failing to live up to our legacy as a nation. We are better than this. We have to be. So when we ask ourselves "What's wrong with the world?", let's make sure we are more of the solution and less of the problem. And let's remind ourselves that it all begins with one person…You. Me. (us)

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14 comments:

LeAnn said...

Thanks Sue for this very timely post. My husband and I were discussing today who and what we were going to vote on. We do need to be responsible and know the issues and the candidates. I am very tired of dirty politics.
You are so right that the World is a mess. I just try to keep in my heart the thought that we should be happy because the Savior will be here soon.
It has become wishful thinking.
Blessings, love and hugs for you dear friend for this one!!

Leovi said...

Yes, it is important to enhance our self-esteem! I loved your post.
Best regards!

Gattina said...

The trouble with the "News" is that with modern communication means we know EVERYTHING. 100 years ago it was probably even worse, only we didn't even know the weather in the next town ! I am sure my Grandma didn't know all the diseases in Africa, or the politic in the whole world !

Karen S. said...

Solutions, now that's something we sure could spike up. Your post truly hit home with me, it's good to read ones own thoughts, because it makes me hopeful that with enough of us one day, we might just get more things right than not. Enjoy your world, and truly, sometimes keeping the news at bay, is a perfect solution.

Grandma Honey said...

Before 9/11 I use to begin and end my day with the news. But since then I can only take it in small doses….just CNN headlines on my laptop. It just keeps getting worse and worse. And the shootings in the schools are most unsettling to me.

EG CameraGirl said...

I'm not sure the world is any worse than it ever was, but for sure we know more about what's going on...and sometimes (perhaps often) we know too much. But on the other hand, we DO need to be informed so we can make the best choices.

If only the news were truly accurate, though. There is so much false information out there that how can we KNOW what is true and what is made up? As an example, there are many Americans who STILL believe that some of the 911 terrorists went through Canada to get to the U.S. It's simply NOT TRUE so how much of what else we've heard through the news is false?

Grandma Honey said...

I think the world has gotten worse. I didn't have to worry about school shootings when I was raising my kids, or buildings being blown up.

jen said...

I'm with you. Used to care a lot about politics, etc., and now I can barely stand to watch any of it.

carol l mckenna said...

Good Question ~ great post ~ I stopped watching the news long time ago ~ get the 'gist' of it online ~ and is enough ~

Happy Sunday to you,
artmusedog and carol (A Creative Harbor)

Brian Miller said...

i will vote...but i might not be happy about it...i am an informed voter...i study...i usually read books by each candidate...do some checking on voting records...beyond the propaganda that they put out...or that party faithful propogate...but we really need an overhaul on our political system...the ones we would want to vote for can not afford the money slinging.....

yaya said...

Amen

Betty said...

I agree...we just know more now and quickly. That also means we sometimes get misinformation too.

We tend to look at the negative more than the positive. I think that's part of the problem too.

Karen Sue said...

I have not watched the news in a long time. Used to watch local in the am when I was getting ready for work, but it seemed to start the day on a sadder foot...But I vote. My rule is I can't complain if I didn't vote.

Splendid Little Stars said...

This is so logical! If only....
But you're right, all we really have is ourself and that self must be as informed and as conscious as possible.
I wonder...if the candidate actually advertised what they were FOR and not how horrible their opponent is what would be the outcome.

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