I know. Your post was so dead-on that it struck a nerve because it pisses me off that the government is the weather. Everybody complains but nobody does anything about it, so the best we can do is watch the weather reports and grab an umbrella.
I was pissed off at school for the same types of reasons, even way back at 8-9 years old. Felt powerless. At 14, I read Unschooling, “Why Johnny Can’t Read”, stuff about Summerhill by Js Neill, and wanted to change school.
Wrote letters, started a group on the early Internet (1990) for children’s rights, with my main focus on changing or eliminating school (although I allowed people to have other topics).
A couple of rights organizations followed. The National Youth Rights Association is one of them, so is Taking Children Seriously – the founders found each other in my group and split off to form their own causes that they fight today.
So, I feel successful that I made _some_ change.
I still work for change in my own way.
But the uphill battle is hard. Some people work within official channels and for them, I’m grateful because there’s a lot of mazes to go through for that.
Subversive efforts seem to work best though. I mean, you’re right: Educate people. Let them know they’re not alone.
It’s not that people “don’t know”. They know. There’s no sheep here. They KNOW IT SUCKS.
Every kid knows that school sucks. They just bend over and deal with it.
Every adult knows that government and corporations are problematic, that lawyers are a regretful necessity and other things like that.
People AREN’T idiots, even if they appear to be.
So it’s not waking people up. It’s letting them know they’re not alone.
THEN… once you’ve got them knowing they’re not alone, you discuss to find ways to fix the problem.
You don’t have special secret knowledge that few know about.
You don’t. Every adult 18 – death knows this stuff at some level.
But once you get people’s attention, you gotta go beyond a pity party at some point.
Sorry for the rant. It just takes a lot of effort to stay positive about things I can’t do a damn thing about right now, which includes everything you mentioned and then some.
Most of the people that seem to be “asleep” are just coping as best they can.
Thanks man. I keep this stuff bottled up and stay positive because I don’t have much choice atm. When i see people wearing business suits, white shirts and ties and painted on smiles going to work each day to support their families, they have my greatest sympathies because they haven’t shot themselves yet.
The greatest heroes aren’t always the ones making the rallying cries for change; it’s the unknown ones that try to make the best of the shit piled around them and keep smiling. They’re plenty awake – so awake they can’t afford to close their eyes for a single moment. So awake at the horrors around them they can’t even speak it and are forced to pretend “it’s all ok” for the sake of others’ sanities.
The quiet ones make change where they can.. in the ways that they can. For a kid, maybe all they can manage is getting their homework finished that night. For an adult, maybe successfully doing their taxes, or managing to write a check for their rent or mortgage payment.
Do they dream of overthrowing the school or government?
In the quiet moments when they allow themselves to do so, I have no doubt that they do.
The rest of the time, it’s coping ’til you get burnt up and tossed into the air or stuck in an urn, or buried into the ground, plasticized, and hoping that SOMETHING you did in your life _might_ actually have benefited somebody else in the future…. some little piece carries forward into a future where they’re not there.
*sigh* – sorry about that. I’m the nice-guy who is always smiling and staying positive for the sake of others, so they can express themselves and be all nutty and loud without having to worry about the things I have to worry about. But I know they have their worries too, and I know there’s people worrying about me that I don’t know about.
We’re cogs in wheels and if we escape one machine, we join another. The fight is worthy though.