Monday, 4 July 2016

Thoughts On Hope

'Hope, in its deep and powerful sense, is not the same as joy that things are going well, or willingness to invest in enterprises that are obviously headed for early success, but rather an ability to work for something because it is good, not because it stands a chance to succeed.' - Rebecca Solnit 

hope 1

I'll start off with the bad news. Things are terrible. If you're from the UK, you'll know that we have voted to leave the EU, a catastrophic decision made on the back of a leave campaign based predominantly on lies. We will likely be torn apart from Scotland and possibly even Northern Ireland, and continue on our way to becoming a xenophobic, isolated island, with no room for the vast benefits and cultural variety that multiculturalism brings. Our main parties are not giving us much hope of any unity or cohesive political plans, and everything feels completely tangled, a total mess. It's dividing North and South, political parties, families, friendships.

I could continue to post about my outfits on this blog, outings in London, pretty pastel objects that I've found and loved, but I'm finding it harder at the moment. It's difficult to concentrate on anything other than our world crumbling around us, a world where we see hate thrive and trickle through our political systems, poisoning our society. Hope feels like an alien concept and fear is on the rise.

It's easy in these moments to feel deeply nihilistic, this is the only world we have and we see it being destroyed every day, by systems and laws that seem out of reach. Even in the EU referendum, a democratic vote, it feels as if political figures have taken our problems and manipulated them for their own political gain, such as spreading this idea that immigration is the source of our economic and welfare problems, rather than the austerity we have suffered over these years. Should we just give up? Is this just how it is?

We should feel angry, not just for ourselves, but for others. It's an uncomfortable feeling, one that leaves you restless, one that takes you round in circles and always returns to helplessness. What can I do? You wonder. But with anger comes passion for change, and I honestly believe that even the smallest gestures can make a difference. I've learnt that holding onto hope with all my might in difficult times has been the most important thing I could do, however futile it seemed, however much it hurt to keep going.

Believing that things will get better is the starting point, but then it takes a voice, and then action, more than that, it takes resilience. These moments make us analyse ourselves and wonder what more we could be doing. I've thought of some ways to make even the smallest difference, whether it is in politics, the environment, or another cause you care about:
  1. Be open about your beliefs. I have certainly felt more inclined to speak more openly about my opinions since Brexit, mostly due to outrage. Sharing your beliefs not only helps you articulate what are often difficult and perhaps even contradictory thoughts, but they could change somebody else's perspective.
  2. Register to vote, if you haven't already,
  3. Make you sure you know who your local mp is, and lobby them with issues that you care about. If you disagree with Brexit it would be a good idea to let them know. 
  4. Join a political party. Though our two main parties in the UK seem to be in strife at the moment, if a party aligns closely to your political beliefs then you can help by donating money and leafleting. 
  5. Listen to those in minority groups, but don't speak for them. Take in what they are saying, believe their grievances, and amplify their voice by sharing it with others. 
  6. Don't stand idle when you see injustice. If you can, call it out. For Londoners who see incidences of racial hatred in the wake of Brexit, you can call or text 61016 to report it to the police. 
  7. Go to protests. I've heard many people describe the recent anti-Brexit march in London as futile but I couldn't disagree more. Brexit will probably still happen, yes, but it's so important that this event goes down in history as something that a substantial amount of the population strongly disagree with. There is always a point and your presence is needed and appreciated. Protests represent a collective voice and strength that is so crucial. 
  8. If you can, donate to causes you care about. Give to organisations that try to make up for the significant cuts in arts funding, donate money to gun violence victims in America, donate to your local charity shop. 
  9. Sign petitions. It takes seconds and substantial numbers usually result in a a discussion in parliament and media coverage. 
  10. Read articles about what is going on in the world, whilst always being mindful of media spin. It's easy to read something on Twitter and immediately think its true, but fact checking can help prevent unhelpful or inaccurate ideas spreading.
Recent events have encouraged me to seriously consider what I care about. There isn't an excuse to give up and let events pan out in a way we think is wrong just because we feel that one person can't make a difference. Believing that you yourself cannot make a difference surely undermines your perspective of yourself and your ability to leave your mark on the world. Why the hell are we even here otherwise? Hope is a form of protest and one that we should be engaging with in these difficult times. Don't leave it to the few to try and change things when small forms or protest can exist in each and every one of us. 

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3 comments :


  1. شركة تنظيف خزانات بالمدينة المنورة وشقق بالمدينة المنورة شركة غسيل خزانات ومكافحة حشرات بالمدينة المنورة ونقل عفش بالمدينة المنورة مؤسسة صفوة المدينة
    شركة تنظيف خزانات بالمدينة المنورة
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    شركة مكافحة حشرات بالمدينة المنورة

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