The world I WILL be pursuing, as we all weather this storm, will be one of love, compassion, and equality for everyone.
This pandemic is a sign. If you believe in a power greater than yourself, you can call it a message from god or whatever deity you prefer; if not you can call it a wake up call. I call it a gift.
Everything the people of the world are witnessing and experiencing right now is the beginning of the end. Not the annihilation of the world, but the end of the world as we know it. The world has been building to this point for centuries. I don’t believe in prophecies or a judgement day, but I do believe in seizing the moment.
The old world we’ve been inhabiting for the last 60+ years has improved technologically beyond our wildest dreams but declined ideologically to the darkest pools of mire.
The old world of bias and bigotry, of inequality and imbalance; and of intolerance and hatred of our fellow human beings has run its course and it’s time to put down our actual and preverbal guns and open our arms (at a safe social distance) and embrace our fellow human beings.
We need an end to governments and those entities who tangentially control them who treat its citizens more like slaves and masters rather than equal human beings. The time and evidence now before us demonstrates that we all are entitled to equal rights and protections under the law regardless of color, size, age, health, party affiliation, sex, orientation, origin, preference, nationality, wealth, education, crime, langage, family, et al…. Equal to have a basic standard of living that everyone can afford and attain. Basic to not have to ever worry about food, healthcare, education, or a safe place to live ever again.
The signs were evident for a very long time, but we walked past them or looked the other way as it suited us. We’ve been beholden to a toxic political system where leaders are selected, of all political leanings, who put their personal agenda above the general welfare of their constituents. Where we as people slap labels on swaths of the population like ‘Republicans’, ‘Liberals’, ‘Corporations’, ‘Muslims’, ‘Christians’, ‘Latinos’, ‘Asians’, ‘Whites’, ‘Blacks’, ‘Blue or Red’ and make them friend or foe accordingly.
Public discourse has devolved to isolating ourselves into bubbles of like minded people by blocking any dissenting viewpoint while simultaneously berating, belittling, and down right disrespecting people who have differing perspectives on the world because they’ve been grouped together under a label.
We, as human beings are all individuals, not labels. We all have unique experiences, affiliations, fears, ideas, and goals. We all deserve to be treated with respect and need to treat all human beings equally. We can respectfully disagree with the actions or beliefs of an individual or organization, but respect the underlying human beings who may belong to an organization as they may or may not subscribe to every covenant that is associated with the label. We need to learn how to engage in thoughtful constructive communication where we speak to each other, not at one another, with respect and agreeing to respectfully disagree when you can’t come to a consensus. Speaking from a bully pulpit degrading large swaths of people or organizations (aka labels) does not unite us, it separates us and polarizes everyone.
These old ways of division are over. We’ve all been humbled down to the same level across the globe. We’re all finally equal… equally scared, equally uncertain, and equally vulnerable.
The end of the world, as I see it unfolding in front of me, is a moment in history where the world is slowing down, sputtering along, slowly winding down around us as it gets ready to shutdown, upgrade, and reboot.
Where the signs were surreptitious in the past, in the current environment they are clear; you can see them blatantly everyday. A disease that is growing exponentially that could could potentially kill millions, if not hundreds of millions of people; the panic and fear across the globe; the empty store shelves, hoarding of food (and for some crazy reason toilet paper); people who refuse to quarantine because they’re more afraid of a bill than the potential to spread a potentially lethal disease; and through it all we are still holding on to the ineffective ways of communication by degrading and attacking people with whom we don’t agree. This division has many culprits, from the media to political parties, but it is we as human beings who allow it to continue to propagate.
As we are living today, in what seems like the worst of humanity, I see the future post-pandemic world taking shape. I see people reaching out to friends, neighbors, and people they don’t even know extending a hand of peace, love, and assistance to those in need. I see a government that is begrudgingly acquiescing to enact programs to help those in need after decades of dismantling social programs that could have aided in quelling the rampent spread of this virus in this country in particular.
This is our moment for every human being on the planet, to shape the new world. To unite around ideas and solutions that protect everyone. It’s time for Earth 2.0.
It’s not going to be easy and we’ll most likely not get it right the first or fiftieth time around. But we can continue to thrive for a better world around the common goal of equality and social security for all.
Like any disaster, it’s starts with panic, fear, and selfishness to fend for ourselves during a time of unknown. But as is also true in the aftermath of any disaster, the true human nature takes over and people exit their homes, if they are so fortunate to do so, and help the community rebuild. And that’s exactly what I am already seeing and plan to do as we move forward.
I wish everyone, whether we agree with each other or not, good health and safe passage through this historic global event.