Good or evil?

In a world fueled by what feels like more ‘good causes’ each and every day, how do you possibly choose which ones to care about? Between using fewer plastic straws, feeding the hungry, standing up for the rights of ourselves and others, becoming vegan, buying only Fairtrade products, recycling, adopting shelter pets, housing the homeless… one begins to realize that being a ‘good’ person may actually be a full-time job in itself – and who has time for work or play when there’s world-changing that needs to happen? 

Not to mention the fact that often times our ‘world-changing’ efforts contradict the efforts of others, making none of them very effective. Are we renovating the city to make a safer area or are we pushing people out of their homes due to higher housing costs? Are we offering teens innovative technology that will make them more successful or are we promoting a digital world that contributes to their growing anxiety and depression? Are we fostering a social environment that encourages diversity and inclusion or are we becoming so inclusive that we’re actually exclusively filling roles and positions with diverse individuals who aren’t actually qualified, but fit the diversity bill? 

I don’t know. And honestly, I’m not sure if anyone does.

Often times people feel that in order to be respected they must take strong, committed (often closed-minded) stances, but what if we were all a little more honest about all the things we don’t know? This step could cultivate communities that are actually willing to listen to the experiences of others and take them into consideration.   

Open dialogue and communication creates tolerance and a heightened level of respect for the ‘other’. As a common phrase claims, public opinion leads to public action. It doesn’t say truth leads to action, instead it’s essentially claiming that perception leads to action. With a lack of free-flowing, transparent information, public opinion will likely be skewed and will consequently lead individuals to no longer make the best decisions for the greater good. 

There will forever be more ‘good causes’, but having only 24 hours in a day presents some obvious limitations. By being aware of the needs of others and willing to listen to those that support causes that you may not have time for, progress is inevitable. 

 

Amy Greene