Amusement parks can be vastly entertaining–we get to watch all the freaks (uh, that would be us as well), assault our bodies with all kinds of suspect rides, take our chances to win a bobble or two (or some bigger-than-truck-sized stuffed animal), and indulge in the gastronomic cuisine (fried Twinkies, fried Snickers Bars?). And we get to distract ourselves for a bit about that wizard behind the curtain that seems to run things whether we know it, like it, or not.
However, on the world stage, I’m a little more than suspicious that is exactly how the less affluent see the more affluent–as humanity far removed from reality.
So here we sit, one of the major countries in the world, plying our ideas around like everyone knows what the definitions are to begin with. We know we’re being manipulated, we know we’re not all that good at being stewards, but we seem to be intent on ignoring the obvious to protect our affluence.
I’m not against affluence, in fact I break out in a rash just thinking about poverty. And I don’t think that affluence is the root of all evil–there are lots of roots to go around for that entity. I tend to think that ignorance is a bit of a problem however. And it is also my perception that affluence doesn’t seem to cure ignorance anymore than poverty does. Stupidity apparently is not dependent up economic status.
Perhaps we are afflicted with packrat syndrome. Perhaps the edge of our humanity is dulled by our comfort. Whatever it is, I don’t think we have to give up that comfort to be motivated. We do have to rub the sleep out of our eyes and the naiveté out of our hearts and minds: We are not necessarily smarter because we are wealthier, we are not necessarily world leaders because we supposedly choose our form of governance, we are not necessarily the world’s hall monitor because we’ve got big sticks, we are not necessarily on the cutting edge of humanity because we’ve got more educational institutions, and we are not necessarily God’s chosen people because we have more of anything.
So, in this time of voting, we could vote for what’s available (read that as we’ve been told what our choices are) or we could learn to not be force-choiced into a selection. We could vote for better choices. We could vote for awareness rather than getting our duty over with. Oh, we might have to pay attention to our pets, to our noise, to our energy usage, to our concepts and ideals rather than just elect others to do it for us (though we might have to give up bitching—nahhhh), but we just might find a new definition of affluence, one grounded in intelligence and awareness rather than in money and power.
What’s behind the curtain of our lives? Is it a wizard or is it us bedazzled by our own wizardry? Amusement parks and wizardry can be fun all right, they have their time and place. But when one is choking on their fried ideas and calling it cuisine, or when one forgets they’re part of, rather than apart from the freak show, perhaps it’s time to pull the curtain back.
Vote for what is best for our awareness and consciousness, not what is best for our pocketbooks. With a vote for the former, we get both. With a vote for the latter, we get only one.