Scranton: Moving upward requires people who are willing to make it happen
Coming out of a worldwide pandemic is tough. It’s tougher when the science and social context of the virus was so problematic for people to understand.
What scientists got caught up in was that politicians were more concerned about the “messaging” than about actually informing the citizenry. The Centers for Disease Control has admitted in recent weeks that their messaging was flawed and people did not get information that was needed to make informed health choices.
This is kinda scary when an agency admits that they fell down on the job during a time when people really needed to understand what was going on and how the virus and its variants were affecting each one of us. Fear gripped many people and entire countries when leaders spoke about the imminent danger and potential catastrophic death rate that we would have to suffer unless we did exactly what we were told.
But that was so many months ago and things are returning to normal — sort of. People are doing their best to get back to the things that were interrupted during lockdowns, social-distancing and massive disruptions to our way of life. Some insist that the way forward is to simply move on and try to forget what we went through.
Our modern propensity for erasing history by way of tearing down statues, rewriting events from different perspectives, or simply telling people to move on is dangerous.
Our self-imposed sense of moral superiority for all things that have happened shows up in our culture when people don’t actually have to do anything to make things better. Commenting on social media about how something is not acceptable shows how much we care without actually having to take action or stand up for what we really believe. Virtue-signaling is all the rage, and it makes people feel good. But the increasing prevalence of “sayers” instead of “doers” is adversely impacting our culture.
The propensity to just think about doing something is replacing the fact that actually doing something is necessary to make an actual change that is lasting and worthwhile. Feeling like working isn’t the same as going out and physically attending to a series of often mundane tasks that make our world a better place. Feeling like people should help others is great but actually taking the time to actually, physically go out of our way to help others is often harder to do.
The only way our culture improves upward is when we all realize that thinking about it is great but the hard work of helping make it better requires something of us. Our capacity to get moving again has been hampered by some grand illusion that we can all be safe without risking anything.
Our country is in the throes of an identity crisis that involves feeling over function and we have to snap out of it or the cost to our society might prove more catastrophic than a virus. Remember what has happened, think about what should be done, then unleash your talents and abilities to get our country moving up again.
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