Trump is a symptom not the cause.
So yesterday I went into London for the 3rd part of my 52 portraits of a stranger project. It went really well but more on that on Monday. I arrived at Charing Cross as we had chosen Trafalger Square as the location. We hadn't planned on what was there today. Now for a bit on context I have been staying off the news and politics the past few weeks as I easily become obsessed and hop on a soapbox. As you will learn from this post. So I didn't know what the hell the March that was on today was for.
Rosa my lovely stranger for this week informed me it was the Woman's March and as we battled our way through the crowd I was thinking how amazing that there was such a turn out for women. And then I started seeing Anti-Trump signs and then I thought what a shame that people are allowing this man to take attention away from other important issues in their fury. Of course I learned when I got home that during my media blackout I had missed the fact this women's March was meant to be a Anti-Trump March.
After I recovered from my embarrassment of being out of the loop my brain went into over drive (this is why I have had a political dry spell) people are so angry that this man has got into power. It's global. 2016 was a bat shit crazy year, a catalyst year where it seemed like the world had gone crazy. I don't advocate Trump in any shape or form he is an artefact from the 80s with a glorified view of himself that should of stayed in the 80s. So how the hell has he become the most powerful man in the world and well the answer is he was voted there. That seems to be a point people are forgetting, a voting system that has been believed in for decades upon decades made him the President of the United States of America, Leader of the free world. You can argue about popular votes till you are blue in the face but America had no problem with their voting system previously or not on this scale anyway.
And now everyone is up in arms.
Thing is though, Trump is a symptom not the cause of a society that has long been broken and sick. People didn't just go crazy overnight and vote against their best interests, this has been brewing a long time and here is the result. A TV reality show host is the POTUS. And he used sound bites to get there. He has no real beliefs or policies he just knows how to market himself. People are comparing him to Hitler which is ridiculous, Hitler had a genuine fucked up life long purpose against a group of people born from a hatred in his youth. Hitler was dangerous because he believed in his purpose and could get others to fall in line with it. Trump has no purpose other than is own ego, Trump just told the narrative of what he thought people wanted to hear and changed it accordingly when needed. But he does represent a confused, angry and let down society.
Why? Because we have tolerated the narrative of the previous governments in the world for to long. We have tolerated decisions made not in our best interests and the reluctance to change systems that are not working anymore.
Your world and life is only made up of what you tolerate. You tolerate living in a shithole then you will live in a shithole forever or until you reach a breaking point. Trump is probably the catalyst along with Brexit of the unhappiness of western society. And you need a catalyst or breaking point to either roll over and do nothing or get up and DO SOMETHING.
It seems in the mass population so far tolerating has been the easy route, turning a blind eye because well it doesn't really effect you. Until it does.
We tolerate a broken and dated education system that does nothing but turn our children into robots where 99% of them will go into lives of tolerating jobs they hate and a continued lack of self worth because the curriculum they are being fed is telling them this is what makes you a good contributor to society. On top of that we blame the teachers who I have nothing but the upmost respect for they have shit pay and little thanks and most of them are trying to make the best of a rubbish situation BUT when they protest for our children's future we call them lazy, greedy, troublemakers because their strikes inconvenience you going to do a job you tolerate, to pay into a society you tolerate so you can raise children who will tolerate.
Then we have the NHS a health system we should be proud and supportive of. But no one wants to work in it and we blame the immigrants we need to keep it going for taking low paid jobs we didn't want. It's falling apart and the people desperately trying to hold it together need us to stand up and believe in them not keep on voting in a government trying to dismantle and sell it off.
As for voting.... Who voted in the last election? I didn't (I bet you thought I was going to say I did) but I wish I did but the truth is I was too busy tolerating my situation and then I decided to start learning again. I chose to wake up, I chose to start wanting to believe in something better not just for myself but for others too. And the more you start to educate yourself the more you start realise that the system is really broken and you start to understand why people have got so angry about just trying to keep their heads above water. Hell I am of the generation who is the first generation to be worse off than their parents. Buying a house is a pipe dream and just keeping up with our rent and bills is a struggle. So I get it a huge number of people are working their arses off in a job they tolerate to live a life of being one paycheck away from financial ruin. For the people at the top it's the perfect situation. The mass population are too busy struggling to question why they have too.
Because they don't. We all have a choice.
Thing is though huge numbers of people have fallen for the sound bites. A mainstream media continually pushing us to be fearful of people who are worse off than us, that it's their fault your life is like this, that to prosper we need to put up more boundaries to keep others out rather than make ourselves vulnerable so we are open to more connection, more inspiration, new ideas and a stronger and bigger community. The reality is the most fearful of our society have been the ones let down the most in education, health and the ability to prosper. And until now they didn't have representation. Trump saw the gap and filled it just as any good business man does.
What's frightening for me anyway is the fact that the world is focusing on him. They are predicting world war 3, more racism, predjudice and blaming let down people for voting him in. Problem is when you start predicting things from a place of fear and anger they usually become a self fulfilling prophecy. There is still an us against them attitude whichever side of the fence you are sat on and that will give rise to worse things than Donald Trump. All I am saying is maybe more energy needs to be put into asking why did he become so powerful as opposed to just being angry that he is there and seeking for someone to blame. Because that's the easy option. It's much easier to moan and make angry Facebook comments on meme's than to actually take action for something better.
Because and don't be angry with me we are the ones to blame. Our current society has been choosing to tolerate a broken system for too long and what 2016 showed was that actually there are huge numbers of really unhappy and afraid people who weren't given an opportunity to be heard until 2016.
And that makes me sad not angry. As human beings, as sentient beings of so much potential we are still allowing fear to rule us. Fear is an instinct there to protect us, it's there so we question a situation and make a decision. Problem is it's not actually supposed to control us which is where we are at right now.
I honestly don't know what the answer is and to be honest I don't think there is a definitive 5 step process to the happiness of billions of people. I also find it mental we put all our power into one person be that a prime minister or a president. The solution isn't having Michelle Obama as president or another referendum to over turn Brexit. It's looking to ourselves and deciding what it is we want to tolerate. It's supporting the innovators and problem solvers of the future. It's encouraging our children to want to answer difficult questions and solve problems without fear of failing. Because those who try do fail it's part of the path of success. It's choosing to be cup half full and not half empty and to not judge others for their differences but to embrace them.
Instead of reacting in fear to someone like Trump becoming so powerful we need to be asking HOW he became so powerful and what can we do to change that. I believe that starts with ourselves and choosing to act from a place of love and compassion not fear and hate. Because fear and hate only leads to more fear and hate.
Yes be angry, yes stand up and believe in something. But make sure that you are focusing that energy on the cause, the root of the problem because right now everyone is focused on a symptom with awful hair.
The woman's March yesterday was a testament to what can be achieved when people feel passionately about something in unity. If Trumps presidency is what gets people to stand up and say 'We will not tolerate this anymore' then perhaps this is the moment real change for humanity will happen. And is that such a bad thing?
Anyway I am hopping off my soapbox now and off to fret that my 1am ramblings aren't going to upset too many people ;)