We live in an age of amazing possibilities. Science has taken human civilization to places our forefathers didn’t even have the capacity to dream of. We, as a species, have developed outside of the influence and authority of nature; we have carved out the destiny we feel entitled to. This is something no other species has ever done on this planet, or even in the universe as far as we currently know.
Yet there are some things in this world of ours that are so horrible, I sometimes think this fortune of civilization that we have received is not enough to offset it. For example: slavery. I’ve read that there are more people enslaved in the world today than there were at the height of the transatlantic slave trade, 400 years ago. I’m not sure how accurate that is, but I can tell you that the CIA stated in 2008 that there were 1,000,000 people in the United States suffering through slavery. But that’s just one evil.
What about racism? What about the destruction of our natural resources and environment? What about the marginalization of the impoverished, while in most societies they make up a more significant portion of their population than the exceedingly rich? How about gender inequality? Why is it that nearly a hundred years after women were allowed to practice their right to vote that they are still making nearly 30 percent less than men on average? The list can go on and on.
I’m sick of it all.
From my point of view, I believe we’re transitioning from a period of systematic human selfishness to a time of human responsibility. If I’m wrong, it cannot be much further away, of that I’m sure.
We need to come together as a species. Humans are unlike any other animal on the globe. This cannot be argued. Why the hell do we insist on acting like other animals? We don’t need to be savage; we have been given the tools to rise above that. The problem is, the building of civilization has traditionally been based on a foundation of some of the worst attributes belonging to humans. Greed, avarice, pride – you get it. And honestly, we shouldn’t give too much thought about why things were done in the past, because there’s nothing to be done about it. There’s no sense in pointing fingers.
What we can do, however, is come together and collectively decide to move forward with more noble intentions for ourselves. Think of all the things we can do if we all decided on what was best for each other and humanity as a whole, instead of just the individual.
Now, please don’t think I’m arguing for us all to forget our worldly possessions and settle ourselves at the nearest Kibbutz. We can still have individual dreams and aspirations, but we should all be striving for impact, change and greater good. I don’t even mean actively working in the community or anything like that, but rather each person doing something they love, something they can be proud to contribute to society. If you love poetry, devote yourself to it and become a poet. Write beautiful things and then leave them behind for generations of humans to enjoy. If you love building cars, build them! But instead of trying to build as many cheap cars you can in order to make a profit, why don’t you try to come up with the most environmentally responsible personal transportation method the world has ever known, then pass it on for humanity to enjoy and build upon for centuries after your lifetime? Whatever you do, don’t just settle for an occupation in life that you don’t believe in and makes you miserable. What kind of a life is that?
I think I’m just disappointed with all the potential we have as a species just lying in waste about us. There’s something inherently evil in mankind. I’m not a religious person at all, but I know this to be true in my very bones. There’s something about intelligence that brings with it malevolence. But there is also compassion and there’s nothing stopping us from choosing compassion over evil. We just have to choose it already.
We’re all humans. I don’t understand why some hate others. Doesn’t it sound ridiculous that someone would hate another person just because they have a different skin tone? Seriously? A different color can piss people off so much that they will kill a fellow human because of it. I know, it’s hard to believe, but it actually happens. Yes, yes, I know that doesn’t make any sense, but it does. There are even people out there that think women don’t deserve the same rights and privileges as men. Yes, I know that humans wouldn’t be able to survive without the capabilities singular to women, but these people still think that way. Ridiculous, right?
It’s not impossible for the world to rise above antiquated misconceptions regarding other individuals. No one should ever, ever hate another person unless that person has given them reason to, based on the individual’s actions or their character. Why bother hating anyone for anything else? Unless someone has come into your house and kicked your puppy, why would you waste even a second of your life inviting the ugliness of hate into your heart?
I really feel like there’s no other direction for humanity to go in. If we continue on the same path we’re on, we’ll perish. I don’t think I’m the only who realizes that, either. We only have this one shot to do things right and we’ve been wasting it. We humans are smart, though. Before we do irreparable harm to this planet and ourselves, we will start making decisions that will provide for the security of our species. I don’t think we should wait that long though. I implore you, wake up tomorrow morning and dedicate yourself to humanity. Be the best person you can be and commit yourself to something you believe in. Be more fair and kind to others. Go out and introduce yourself to someone you secretly judged and be surprised at how interesting they are. Inform yourself on what needs to change and maybe if we all do this, we can make a difference. Why not? Anything less would be selling us all short.