As a Journalist/Author of written work, it is frowned upon to say “I”, and/or produce a personal opinion upon a given subject; Unless you are an established, and well recognized columnist.
With the above being stated, please recognize how passionate I must be to jeopardize my reputation so early into my career by creating this piece. But, sometimes with passion, comes risk. This article, is worth the risk.
The world is constantly changing, but a few things remain the same. Natural disasters continue to happen across the globe, third world countries are still starving and thirsty, victims of abuse are still fighting for justice, crooked cops still exercising racism, minimum wage will always be too low, and people are still stupid.
Last week, two days ago, and today, I logged into my social media accounts, to see what my peers and friends are discussing, and what’s important to them. What I discovered is important to everyone made me really reflect on what is important to me. What I realized is much more terrifying than I could have ever imagined. I realized, I couldn’t decipher which news was important to me, because everything important is swept under the rug, or sidebar stories next to Caitlyn Jenner changing her gender. Meanwhile, everything superficial, and ‘hot right now’, is what is sweeping the nation’s news feeds and social media outlets.
By no means do I think entertainment stories aren’t worth making the news. Without entertainment stories, I wouldn’t be writing to an audience. What I think is of importance, is how we prioritize what really matters to us, as people.
Below, is a list of modern day tragedies, that are worth reading and thinking about.
6. Caitlyn Jenner, Take A Seat.
There is no doubt about it, Caitlyn Jenner, (formally known as Bruce Jenner), is courageous.
Recently, Cosmopolitan.com released “10 Moving Quotes From Caitlyn Jenner’s ‘Vanity Fair’ Interview”, and some of the quotes are moving. One in particular: “Underneath my suit I have a bra and pantyhose and this and that and thinking to myself, ‘They know nothing about me.'” (Cosmopolitan.com).
Needless to say, the life Caitlyn was living before her transition would’ve been dark, and very depressing. Anyone with a shred of empathy or compassion could understand the pain and turmoil that would cause.
Caitlyn’s act of courage was considered so brave and so heroic that she was awarded the Arthur Ashe Courage Award… Are you kidding me? This is a tragedy.
Do you know who Noah Galloway is, or Lauren Hill? Probably not, because their acts of heroism, bravery, and courage haven’t made it to your Facebook page, yet.
In short, Noah is a former USA army soldier who lost his left arm above the elbow, and left leg above the knee while fighting in the army. Lauren was an American basketball player in Cincinnati, Ohio, who was suffering from terminal brain cancer, and lost her fight against the disease when she was 19 years young. These two individuals are just an example of the contestants Caitlyn Jenner surpassed to receive the ‘Courage’ Award.
Not to say that Jenner’s transition hasn’t been courageous, and helpful for other transgender individuals struggling with their identity; but to say it was more courageous than the other contestants’ struggles and battles in life, is a slap in the face to those who risked their lives for others, or lost their lives to terminal diseases.
5. New Age Adults Can’t Do Their Taxes
The majority of educational systems are still teaching poetry and linear equations in mathematics, but the majority of people aren’t becoming poets and math teachers.
Educational systems need to get with the times. It’s 2015, and students are still graduating from school without a clue how to survive in the real world, and be independent as an adult. Isn’t it time we shed some light on the importance of an improved education system?
Many people, myself included, don’t know how to do their taxes without an accountant, their parents help, or downloading software onto their computer that does it for them.
But hey, thank goodness I know what a ‘haiku poem’ is.
4. Life Is Being Lived Through A Lens, & Not Our Eyes
Go to your favourite restaurant, or go shop at your favourite store; It won’t matter where you go, because what every place shares in common now, is the people that fill the environment are in the early stages of carpel tunnel and/or suffering from neck pain. Do you know why? Well if you guessed because their fingers are quickly texting, and their head is tilted down to their cellphone screen, then ‘bingo’, you’re correct.
It pains me, and many like me, to see that we are no longer living in the moment, but we’re filming it, constantly.
Precious moments, that are meant to be memories, are now just a minute and thirty second long video stored into your phone. That does not amount to the joy it could hold if you watch it, feel it, breathe it in, experience the ride, and store it in your memories.
Not only skipping the moment to record it, but losing yourself in your cellphone when you’re with a group of friends. The irony in meeting up with your ‘buddies’, just to text other ‘buddies’, baffles me.
This generation is so glued to screens, pretty soon we’re all going to need glasses, and we will all suffer from arthritis in our hands before we’re 40. Try leaving your phone at home for an entire day, maybe two if you’re feeling courageous. Tell me how you feel after those two days. #screenfreestressfree
3. Real World Problems Are No Longer ‘Hot Topics’
Other than the evening news, and specifically typing in world issues into a search bar, it’s not as easy to hear about world issues that are impacting the Globe, today.
The world is a large place, and across the world, are issues that are still huge, and tragic. Instead of these issues being talked about as constantly as the latest hash tags, or the hottest summer trends, we’re being fed mind-numbing and superficial information. As people, we are literally dumbing ourselves down by allowing ourselves to care about things that don’t impact our daily lives.
If each radio station gave information about politics or natural disasters across the globe, for just ten minutes a day, the world would be a more educated place.
2. Kids Are Having Kids
This is not to say that you have to be a certain age to have children. This is to say that anyone from the ages of puberty to late adulthood seems to think having children is not a life-altering decision, that should be made once you’re completely ready; Both mentally, financially, and emotionally.
If you are bringing life into this world, give it everything you have, with someone you know that will do that too. Think about the power you hold once you become a parent. You are the provider, the protector, the role-model, and the person they turn to when they don’t have the answers. To them, you know everything, and can fix anything. This is the biggest job of your entire life, and it stays with you your entire life. There are no second chances, if you screw up badly enough, it is for life.
Sometimes with life, comes mistakes, and unplanned turns. So, don’t go beating yourself up if you were a contestant for “MTV’s 16 and Pregnant”; but also, don’t ruin a life that didn’t have a choice in the matter. If you can wait, do so. There is no rushing perfection (or as close as you can get).
1. Minimum Wage: Poverty Glorified
In Canada, it has been raised to $10.25. Great! So that means, if I work an 8 hour shift at minimum wage, I can make $82.00 before taxes.
With the cost of living increasing, along with everything else, and minimum wage staying at such an extreme low, it makes it next to impossible to either:
1. go to college
2. move out
3. move out and go to college
4. pay for college
5. not become a drug dealer, because “screw this” they make tons of money
The last one is a joke, kind of. The sad reality is, many “goodie two shoes” as they’re called, feel cornered into making illegal decisions to pay their way through college; especially if they are independently doing so.
If the cost of living and gas prices keep going up everyday, shouldn’t minimum wage also?