One Year of Gratitude—Day 152

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash. Thank you, Pricsilla!

I have opinions. I have concerns. I don’t have solutions because I do not have direct experience. I’m talking about politics. All around me, I see friends and family engaged in what I believe to be an unhealthy debate. Folks are continually arguing their points of view on social media. They’re criticizing people for opposing points of view. It looks like a new form of religion. Or maybe it’s more like a religious soap opera. It’s like if we tune in tomorrow, as the story unfolds, we’ll be the informed citizen who can preach truth to our peers.

The challenge is that we have media outlets perfectly crafted to match our political narrative. News streams are available to support every conceivable point of view. They’re all instantly available with a few simple clicks. Click. Click. Ahh.. validation. I knew I was right! People seem to forget that social media is designed to serve us information that we already believe. Contextual advertising is nothing new on the internet. That’s another story. We can talk more about it when Net Neutrality becomes a hotter topic.

I know of one or two people who go beyond the click. They look beyond social media and participate in the local and state government. They attend rallies. They vote at every single election, no matter how big or small. I only know three people who have run for political office. Their views are experience based and probably more valuable to the public than most news media outlets. However, they are the significant minority of people on social media sharing their experiences. And social media is where most folks seem to be starting their search for political/religious/philosophical/you-name-it information.

I do not participate in the government and therefore have zero control of the outcome of the political process. Perhaps, one day I may feel the need to take real action. You know, like a smoker who finally says “that’s it, I’ve had enough.” Until then, it’s just a dream of one day being an ex-smoker. A person can complain all they want. It’s probably not the most comprehensive strategy for making change.

After reading “A Complaint Free World” by Will Bowen, my complaint meter became more sensitive. I try hard to not complain. I’m not perfect, but I’m giving it my best shot. I recommend this book highly. I am thankful for the insight I gained from it. I’m happy I’m not getting sucked into the drama of politics as much as some of my friends and family. I could join in and complain all I want. Boy, the opportunity is certainly there. But, that won’t amount to much. If I am not willing to take significant action, I probably shouldn’t complain about the state of our government or anything else.

And that is your gratitude for today.