​A very brief post, shamelessly copied from a comment I put on a friend’s Facebook page, for all my lovely friends who are scared and saddened by the way things have seem to be going right now. It does seem as though the world is in a bad place, but I think a lot of it is because of the media’s tendency to report bad news rather than good news, because bad news is “news”, plus our own tendency to pay more attention to the negative than the positive. 

It’s also easy to forget how things in the past must have felt to people living through them because we know that those events ended “Ok” – we worry less about use of nuclear weapons than people did during the cold war, but the threat must have felt as scary to them as climate change does to us. Liberals must have been as scared by McCarthy as we are by Trump. The Vietnam War would have seemed every bit as terrifying in its implications as Syria does to us now. I’m not saying those things weren’t huge issues, because they were, but they didn’t necessarily signal that things were on an inevitable downward path. It’s massively important that we don’t get overwhelmed by despair and start believing that we can’t do anything to improve things, because history has shown that isn’t the case – look at this video, for instance.

I’m not going to suggest that we start posting about nice things that happened today, or anything like that (although obviously cat pictures are always good, or dog pictures, if you prefer  😊), but I do think that it’s important, if people are worried, to DO something, and something more than posting on social media or signing a petition (although those are good too). 

    Join a political party or a social movement. Go on a march. Deliver some leaflets. Do a sponsored run, or swim, or climb, or concert or art workshop, to support someone or something that you believe in. Run a debate night. Start a book group reading and discussing books about what’s happening in the world and what you might do in response. Go to events. Work in your local community. Do a litter picking walk. Volunteer. It doesn’t really matter what, so long as it’s in support of a cause you believe in, because every tiny bit helps; remember, all it takes for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing. Plus, doing something will make you feel better. Remember not to believe everything you read. And have faith! xx

    Say Not The Struggle Nought Availeth

    Say not the struggle nought availeth, The labour and the wounds are vain,  The enemy faints not, nor faileth,            And as things have been they remain.

    If hopes were dupes, fears may be liars;       It may be, in yon smoke concealed, Your comrades chase e’en now the fliers,. And, but for you, possess the field.  

    For while the tired waves, vainly breaking  Seem here no painful inch to gain,       Far back through creeks and inlets making,  Comes silent, flooding in, the main. 

    And not by eastern windows only,        When daylight comes, comes in the light,  In front the sun climbs slow, how slowly,    But westward, look, the land is bright.

    By Arthur Hugh Clough