The Pace of Change

Change is hard. Change is slow.

I found myself thinking of climate-change deniers the other day. Why in the face of overwhelming evidence do they refuse to believe in the effects humans have had on the planet? The more I thought about it, it suddenly hit me “Fuck. Of course! This wasn’t a climate issue at all!” All the evidence in the world wouldn’t matter. These people aren’t climate change-deniers, they’re just CHANGE-DENIERS. We all know people who just want things the way they are and reject any change. We all do it to a certain extent, bitching about change. Whether it’s facebook changing a button, or that Leadbetter’s stopped making the english muffins that I like. Eventually people who are open-minded, like myself, just found new english muffins (sigh). But as with everything, this range between rejecting change and being open to change, is a huge spectrum. A lot of people are somewhere in the middle, but more and more people are moving toward the edges. Now, if we’re talking english muffins —pretty inconsequential. BUT, if you’re a person who doesn’t like change, the fact of the matter is, in a relatively short amount of time you have been BOMBARDED by change. The world is getting more global and diverse, America voted for a black president, gay people can now get married, now we’re talking about transgender rights, correct pronouns, same-sex bathrooms…the list goes on. Pretty mind-blowing stuff in a relatively short amount of time. Are these changes positive? ABSO-FUCKING-LUTELY! Now, it seems like the people nearer the edges of this change spectrum have had pretty powerful reactions to all these new goings-on. If you’re conservative then you’re thinking “this is a lot to handle, I’m overwhelmed and I want to slow down — if not stop — all these fucking changes.” If you’re more liberal you’re thinking “Great! Finally we have momentum, let’s keep changing shit for the better!”

So then I think about Trump. Why is this garbage human being connecting with so many people? Although a percentage of his supporters are truly vile racists, I refuse to believe that half or even a third of this country is “evil.” So then why support this horrible person even through repeated evidence of incompetence and just being a grotesque caricature of misogyny? It’s because for his supporters he represents A STOP to all these changes. Make America Great AGAIN is the slogan. Implying going back to something familiar, something we know, something we’re comfortable with. Now a lot of us know (especially if you’re black or a woman) that this romantic notion that America was somehow greater in the past is all but an illusion. But it is a POWERFUL illusion. One that still looms over the country manifesting itself as white nationalism.

On the other side, all the people that are open to change have embraced all this new information. We know so. fucking. much. New ideas. Documentaries about any cause you can dream of. Meat is bad. Oil is bad. A lot of us that make our living making websites in cities probably don’t care about industries that other people work in or depend on for a living. We want what we know is RIGHT and we want it NOW. We pick things up quick. Our minds are fast. We grew up with computers and apps and can familiarize ourselves with new shit at crazy speeds. We don’t understand why the fuck people don’t see things the way we do.

The reality of the situation is we’re in a three-legged race. Our legs are tied together. So if you’re slow you’re gonna have to try a little harder to go a little faster, and if you’re fast you just can’t drag this dude (OR laaaady) thinking you’re gonna win this race. We’re gonna have to find a pace that both of us can handle, and hopefully move forward.

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