Active Citizen

How can I affect change in the world without being a pain in the ass to those around me?

- Give without expectations.
- Work with a purpose.
- Be the change you want to see in the world and in turn that will create the change in the world that you want to see.
- Living your faiths well is far more important than evangelizing your faith in others.

Those are all mantras that I have tried to live my life by. I have felt that they would affect the most amount of positive change in the world with the least amount of negativity projecting onto others. I no longer consider that those ideologies work.

New ideologies needed.

I have been stuck in a quagmire lately, surrounded by people who just do not care about themselves, their health, their environment or the person standing next to them (society). For the most part all of these people are nice people. They pay their taxes, support their churches, support their favorite sport teams, all the while quietly killing themselves with the lifestyle they choose to lead. They are completely oblivious to the damage that they are infecting on themselves, society and the environment in which they live in. Forgive me for the harshness of what I am going to say next: - nevertheless they all seem to be numb, without hope or emotion to care about anybody but themselves.

This condition of quiet surrender to selfishness is killing the planet.

The state of healthcare is out of control simply because 80% of people who have healthcare insurance do not care about improving their health. This is the greatest abuse of the system, causing the largest amount of damage to the overall effectiveness of the medical industry and rising insurance costs. The environment is on the decline simply because people choose not to change their spending habits. We, as Americans, place 40% of toxins and pollution into the atmosphere and water. We also support slavery with our consumerism-mentality. The amount of oil, coal and natural recourses we waste is an uncountable number.

Last week I wrote a post titled: “Citizens’ Responsibility Towards the Future of Healthcare” I e-mailed a couple of my favorite bloggers asking for feedback. The following paragraph is a strong counterpoint to my argument that is well worth reading. Katherine (a.k.a.) Dating God responded:

“What ails people these days is not simply their fault. Refined-carbs pumped into the food supply, tobacco portrayed for years as glamorous and calming for the nerves, fast food made so quick and easy and cheap that only the wealthy can afford to not eat there. I’ll stop now. but seriously, it isn’t as simple as saying: these folks just refuse to take care of themselves. if you surround a person with heroin, with people who do heroin, with ads saying Heroin Is Good For You!, decorate it in pretty, sultry packaging, have doctors recommend it, offer it cheaply and easily, if you do all this, is it still simply an individual’s fault if they use? isn't it then a community problem?”

Again - these people whom I am complaining about are nice people and some of them are my friends and family. (I am in no way innocent of these sins myself). These are the people that give to charity when asked. These are the people that help out the neighborhood in times of need.

They still smoke, eat foods that they know will create disease in them, and cannot even think about making a positive environmental choice. We have forsaken logic and reason for un-attainable dreams of wealth and power (entitlement factor). We as a society are far too disconnected to feel-believe-understand what is happening on the very soil we stand upon. This brings me back to my first sentence.

How can I affect change in the world without being a pain in the ass to those around me?

I am tired of the all the polite head-nods I get when explaining the state of our nation to others. I want change. The reason I care is because (with anger in my heart) I no longer want to pay for the sins of others. I want my daughter to inherit a better world than the one she was born into. I want her to know I tried. Some day she’ll be all grown up and she’ll rightfully want to know what I did to leave her a better earth than the one I brought her into.

I have an internal call to become an activist of sorts. However I am not sure where to direct my efforts. Health, environment and education all seem to be where my passions lie.

An active citizen is what I want to trigger in people. If citizens can change their actions, then laws, corporations and governments will change to fit the people’s needs accordingly. It’s not too late to cultivate the emotions of caring.

Learning to be comfortable with contradictions is a path to enlightenment.

In search of active citizens to fight the quiet surrender to numbness in society wanted.