Patriotism Is Not Enough

Well it’s happened hasn’t it? Do I really need to say more?

In all honesty I don’t know what to say. I’ve had friends telling me to add my voice into the mix. However I think thats the problem, the mix is so vast. How can anyone possibly have something unique to say? How can anyone really make a difference in this world of clickbait and self-reinforcement?

Multiple people on the internet have come to realise in the past year that social media is an echo chamber. On Facebook, the people you are friends with are most likely very similar to you. In my case most of them were born in the 90s or 2000s and most are fairly liberal. Zuckerberg knows this and thus his delightful program panders to my likes and desires and feeds me and my friends material that we enjoy looking at. I have touched on this slightly in a previous article.

The British newspaper the Independent is a perfect example of this. Recently it has taken on board a very click-baity and buzzfeed style of reporting with articles like “Nine Times Trump Has Already Betrayed the US Voters Who Put Their Faith in Him“. Of course the Independent remains a fairly prestigious newspaper but it’s slide towards click-bait has seen a noticeable decrease in recent quality. This is no more true than on it’s Indy100 platform which has headlines like “Jeremy Corbyn just made his most scathing criticism of Theresa May yet – by comparing her to Donald Trump“.

Brilliant.

maxresdefaultSo what? Honestly so what? What has Corbyn really done? Will that headline translate into anything serious in the real world? Will the noble and righteous forces of the left go over to America and ‘destroy’ Donald Trump? There have already been multiple times where Obama has apparently “destroyed Donald Trump”, there have been so many points where we have seen Farage made fun of or Republicans been humiliated by Obama’s smooth delivery. And what has that got us?

Nowhere.

What have Corbyn’s impassioned speeches about the welfare state done for us? What have Obama’s mic drops done for us?

Nothing.

As in the UK after Brexit, racist attacks have started to increase in the USA. What is going on here? Who knows? If it is a ‘whitewash’ what do we do with that?

What can I do?

What can you do in the face of so much hatred from both sides? What can we do when people are dehumanised at every turn, be you black or white?

Protect your friends and family from hate and violence as best you can. All this psychoanalysing of every group in the world that is not part of the Liberal Intelligentsia makes me sick. Start from the ground up. Be welcoming to one another, be kind to the stranger and forgive your enemy.

Get out of your echo chamber. Stop reading the scum that is “9 Ways Trump Is the Devil Incarnate” or “15 Ways Michelle Obama Will Be the Messiah”. People are not intrinsically evil. Yes there are plenty of bad people out there and Trump may be one of them, but most of us are not.

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This is might seem cheesy but I’ll say it anyway. On the Wednesday after the election result I was in Trafalgar square. I felt like I could see signs of doom everywhere as I walked around. But then I saw this statue.

Edith Cavell was a British nurse in the First World War who was famous for helping soldiers from both sides of the conflict. She was executed by a German firing squad despite the fact that British, French, Belgian, and German people pleaded for her pardon. Slightly unrelated to the current situation but the quote on her memorial seems more apt than ever.

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On her memorial lies the phrase “Humanity”. Lets not lose sight of that.

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