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Dear Friends of the World

I woke up this morning shocked and scared but started to think about what has occurred and come to  more resourceful place – one where I can at least change my thinking and try to do things differently each day, which is all most of us can do and it helps more than we know.

I hear that you are blaming white, middle class men for this and calling for women and the young to rise up. I hear you seeing that the “bible belt” won the election and I hearing you blaming religion yet again. I hear you blaming the opposition for not being good enough. I hear you saying education is the answer.

Thing is that the US has always had a thing about its independence and autonomy.  At its core it will protect that beyond all else. And it probably can survive without much help from others as it has plenty of land, oil, wealth, food, water (well that’s struggling!) and lots of space to make fuck ups without it affecting the American ideal too greatly.  He has just seduced the voters by saying, I will preserve what you want and love – the American lifestyle.

But the USA is very scared. They have been scared and brainwashed to believe in threats there are not there and work to protect themselves.  So think about what happens when you are scared.  You go into defence mode – see everything as a threat – you put up your barriers (the wall, immigration controls), you arm yourself (!) you say it’s your right to protect your way of life (even if your way of life is contributing to world pollution), you hark back to the old days which always seem better but they were usually the days we lived off fat which seemed plentiful (post war boom).

The USA took a small step forward with Obama and it got scared – just like we do when we need to make a massive change. How long does it take to leave a long term relationship which you know is bad? How long does it take to leave a job that is making you ill but you can’t see beyond needing the good income?  It got scared and retreated to its old self, but some parts of the US have seen how it could be and that won’t vanish.

The thing about educating the young is that it is not about education – well formal education is a small part.  We are conditioned from a young age to believe and act in a certain way.  Our young people look to how we adults behave and that’s the main way they learn.  So think about what we are teaching our young:

  • Every time you buy cheap clothes just because there is a minute stain on your top or you fancy something new you are saying to your kids it’s ok to pollute the water system, support child labour in other countries and give money to massive western retailers who don’t pay their young workers a good wage!
  • Every time you drive your kids around at the weekend you are saying we need to be busy to be happy, we have a right to do the activities we want to, its ok to use petrol willy nilly
  • Every time you buy fast food you are teaching your kids that they won’t get diabetes, that the flour for the burger bun may have come from the US and the beef too, but that’s ok, that the person serving you is on a zero hour contract and has no workers rights.
  • Every time you pick up your phone and lament the life that everyone else seems to have except you, you are choosing depression, disappointment and fuelling the need to work harder. You are also saying that there is nothing else do – no gardening/growing, no visiting lonely older people, no mending those trousers instead of throwing them away, no inviting friends round for a giggle and a bonfire in the garden, no making a cake with the kids.
  • Every time you hear yourself say “it’s my right” or “it’s my choice” to do these things, you are denying your children and grandchildren their rights to air, food, water and safety.

These things are “education” they are teaching our young and I am guilty of all these things.  I often feel hemmed in by it all, but perhaps we just need to wake up a little and take a look at ourselves and our lifestyles and beliefs first ?

And of course, in the UK we have also elected a party who is pro-fracking, anti-immigration, dissecting our NHS and cutting essential services and benefits.  Our current PM just isn’t orange, loud or sound stupid….

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