I’m listening to this today as COVID 19 starts to go global. I said in my last post that I ‘didn’t give a shit’ about the virus and that I hoped it stayed that way.
There’s a lot of caveats. I meant that I wasn’t worried about myself, or particularly about the children. However, there’s clearly a lot to worry about, particularly our capacity to all worry about one another.
At the moment, though, it feels like a continuation of the summer: a quiet time, but a scary time too, when it wasn’t clear what would happen next but you knew you couldn’t trust your leaders to tell you. I’m glad – if nothing else – that so many of us are experiencing this together, and that we have the technology to keep on connecting us across the planet. Let’s hope that continues. Let’s hope we don’t die before our time, and that metamorphosis is possible.
The federal election was held in Australia this last weekend. Now that it’s over, I wonder why I tied it to political change at all.
I’m an anarchist at heart. I think our societies need leaders but that we should stop giving them all of our power. We expect too much of them – whether they’re Jacinda Ardern, Scott Morrison, Donald Trump or Greta Thunberg – and thus we expect too little of ourselves. We ask these chosen people to live our divinity for us.
Political change doesn’t really come from individual people, whether they are inspiring, boring, principled or craven. Change comes from the systems we collectively put into place. At this point in human history, I’m still hopeful that we can behave more like the tribal animals we are – and that we will still instinctively, decisively, turn away from the destruction of our own species as well as millions of others.
I also don’t think my personal opinions are very important. My actions count far more. In this next Australian political cycle I pledge to opine less and act more often. Despair is lazy. Optimism is not a choice.
(Click here to listen to a new podcast called ‘Outrage and Optimism’. The first episode has an interview with David Attenborough).