Most of the time I think New Year’s resolutions are for the birds, but there is one I am advocating for in 2024: allocate time daily or weekly to educate yourself about what is going on in Canada and the world and get involved. We, as a collective, need you to participate.
If you think your voice counts for nothing and you can’t make a difference, look around. Your lack of attention compounded by the same lack of attention from a sea of others has created a world that can be downright frightening.
I’ve spent most of my citizen life very off the grid. I was busy at work. I presumed I couldn’t change the things I didn’t like. The news upset me. I couldn’t find my “niche” to contribute to. Bla, bla, bla. I had lots of excuses.
I was saved from complete ignorance because I like to read and write, and I was gifted with more informed friends. I finally got involved when I realized how messed up things were. I couldn’t stay ignorant and quiet anymore.
When we look around and see greed and corruption and bad governance – we are to blame if we don’t try to change things.
It’s easy to get intimidated by the corporations and governments who seem to have power over us. But like “The Man Behind the Curtain” in The Wizard of Oz, corporations and governments are simply legal projections of power. We forget that men and women run the world and they can and should be held to account.
We buy into their myths of superiority instead of asking why they have more rights than we do. We accept what they say without checking the facts. We dilute our voices by complaining to friends on social media instead of to the powers that be in companies and government. Stop it!
Being submissive and lazy costs us dearly. We are ripped off by greedy companies and lied to by corrupt politicians, our rights are gradually taken away from us, real democracy is in tatters, the planet is an overheating garbage dump, and most media serve the highest bidder. Armed with the latest technology, healthcare, education, and media we should be living better lives. And yet we are heading towards our extinction. Why?
We let the worst of humanity and human failings win because we choose a laissez-faire attitude; we do nothing.
I’m sharing this because this community, this country and this world need you to care. Your family and friends need you to care. I need you to care.
The world is constantly evolving whether you like it or not. As you connect to issues affecting your community, country, and the world, you develop critical thinking skills. You become aware of your choices, and you empower yourself and others to take action. You help shape your world and develop a strong sense of belonging and responsibility.
2024 deserves a special New Year’s Resolution. Resolve to get involved.
Care enough to be a good ancestor to your children, grandchildren and all those who come after.
Read about what’s going on in Canada and the world. Think about what rights and services are important to you and how having them or losing them would affect your day-to-day life. You have rights and freedoms that are due to you. Make sure you get them. Consider the meaning of freedom; what does it look like on a day-to-day basis? How would your world change with more of it or less of it? Ask questions when things are unclear – you have the right to understand.
Rights, freedoms, and services are rarely given on a silver platter. Accept that you must work for them and at times fight for them.
There are many actions you can take. Write to your local papers – your opinions encourage others and get them thinking. Write to your government representatives. They listen if you bother to write coherently. My suggestion is to fax your letters in. These are printed and more likely to be read. (I do this often and I use free online fax accounts like: www.gotfreefax.com). Meet with your representatives if you are comfortable talking. Get more perspective by reading varied media to get different points of view. Fact-check statements that seem off and post them and your sources for others to read. Start a citizen’s discussion group. Join or start a protest – they work. Volunteer for causes you believe in. Attend courses and seminars to learn – there are tons online. Vote and encourage others to vote.
Try my 2024 New Year’s Resolution. GET INVOLVED. You won’t regret it. I promise.
Happy New Year!