People want to believe that they are part of something bigger. For many this takes the route of individuals seeking to create social change. However, people also want to be part of something bigger for free. They do not want to expend the effort needed to create that connection; they want it to be a self-evident fact. I may not be a fan of those that seek social justice due to my exclusion from their efforts, but I am certainly nonplussed with their efforts when the reality is that no effort is expended in the first place. People must always prove their worth to me, and no worth is conveyed by those that are mere parrots.
Part of the reason that I am on hiatus from social media – specifically tumblr – is that people would often waste my ability to read by posting commonly held beliefs that add little to the existing discourse. Hooray, another uninspired pro-choice post. Oh, here is yet another post reminding us to treat sex workers as human beings. So on and so forth. These people felt like they were fighting for larger causes but were posting uninspired trash that had little discernible opinion therein. The world does not need tape decks, it needs voices that are willing to come up with new perspectives and ideas to challenge the perceived injustices of the world. It is for this very reason that I rarely link third-party articles in my writing. It is too easy to become complacent and say “me too” or “I agree” when a higher standard is demanded. While many things are unimportant to me and I fall victim to being a parrot, for those things that I truly want changed, I will contort until I have come up with a new perspective. Those that are being educated or inspired deserve no less.
Do you recall from high school what it was like to be in a classroom in which a teacher merely read verbatim from the textbook? It was not only boring, but immediately lost as knowledge, no? Those that are pushing change have a responsibility to do more than recite another’s ideas. It is one thing to be shaped by another person, but there is no purpose in being a clone. Each iteration of an idea should have new perspectives and new beliefs attached to it. Only as it reaches critical mass, with the insights of many, can an idea turn into action. If you truly believe in what you are “fighting” for, actually fight and contribute rather than being a thought vampire.