Good Morning lovelies!
Lately, there’s been a lot of heated debates and scandals hitting the online ‘verse surrounding this year’s U.S. Presidential race. While I’m not usually one to get political, I think this year it’s really important that we do. That we make sure we (as Americans) utilize our right to vote and hit the polls this November (or whenever you vote). It’s important that we (as Americans) exercise our right to vote in this race (and really in all political elections).
But besides voting, there’s a lot more that we (as Americans) should be doing in my opinion.
We need to educate ourselves. We need to listen to our allies outside of the United States.
We live in the information age. So how come it seems like so many people are uninformed or misinformed about the politicians we’re voting for and the issues surrounding our country? I’m just as guilty as having a lack of knowledge on these subjects as well. I need to do more to inform myself. That’s why I think it’s so important that we self-educate ourselves.
For many Americans, getting information is as easy as Googling it. I know we all live very busy lives. Trust me I know! But I’m tired of making excuses for myself and falling back on my cop-out of “I’m not really into politics.” Because frankly, we (as Americans) should all be “into politics.” This is our country and we should want to strive to make it better for future generations; make it better so that we can always remain proud of our country. That’s why I think it’s time to end the excuses and do more to inform myself on my country–on the issues that our country is facing and how our political leaders are handling these situations (and in my personal case, how these situations are intersecting in my profession (or soon-to-be profession) as a public librarian).
And while my inclination is dive right into piles of books and do some massive research, I know that’s not really realistic in my busy schedule right now. What I can do (and what I think we can all do), is dig deeper into what our politicians are saying. Fact check their statements or find articles where someone’s already done the work for us. Make sure you’re reading/watching information from multiple perspectives/sources to get the full picture surrounding a situation or issue. Find an issue that you’re really passionate about and read up on it; see what the politicians in your area are doing about it. If we just take the extra few minutes a day or a week to dig past what all the main media is throwing our way, I think we’d be on the way to a more informed nation of citizens.
Another way I think we could really self-educate ourselves is by reading diversely. I know there’s been a lot of discussion around the word “diverse” and around diversity within the book community. But I think it’s so important! Not only to read books about/containing diverse characters or written by diverse authors, but also books about/containing different points of view. Books and information are so powerful. Having the knowledge that comes with reading these sources only expands our power to do something in this country as well as to live a more fruitful life.
Plus, it’s important to take a step back and see how others living outside the U.S. see us. What are our international friends telling us about this election? What are they commenting on about issues in the U.S.? Is there a common point of view coming from those outside of the U.S.? We need to be just as willing to listen to outside opinions as we are willing to inform ourselves and listen to inside experts. Listening to outside opinions acts as a way that we can self-evaluate our country. They can sometimes see something that we are missing because we’re too close to the situation.
So I’m urging you to think of future generations. To inform and self-education yourself. To listen to your international friends. To exercise your right to vote. To do something more.
Also, in light of some…um…very vile comments from a certain political nominee, I want to encourage you to read Why We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Adichie’s essay was really inspirational to me and I found it informative. I think it speaks well to the need for feminism today.
I know that this post might not be received well but all, but I hope it does encourage you to at least think about our current situation and to discuss the issues our country is facing.
Let me know your thoughts on my discussion above. What are your go-to sources for information and staying informed?
As always, Happy Reading!
*Disclaimer: None of my links on this post or on this blog are affiliate links. If I ever begin to participate in affiliate links, I will let you know. 🙂