Tuesday, March 04, 2003

Why do I read independent media? Because mainstream media is full of crap. If you read the linked stories on this site, then you will notice a trend toward the "little" guys in the news press. I don't like being lied to, and there seems to be a definite trend toward that for the big guys when covering political things. I would like to think that we would like our coffee without the cream, as it were. But this does not seem to be the case. We ingest whatever comes down the line from MSNBC, CNN, Fox News and the rest without question. It would be different if there was some sort of impariality in regards to political party lines when broadcasting these stories, or if we recognized the fact that alot of these news groups were controlled by special interests and boycotted them for giving us skewed reports. Guess what? We all know this, but do nothing.

We have become an apathetic society who has decided that we cannot affect any meaningful change in the world. We all realize that we aren't getting the whole story, but are resigned to the fact. We have comto the point that we as individuals cannot affect change in our society. We don't have any faith in the "one voice can make a difference" frame of mind. We, as Generation X, were raised after the true patriots were killed off. We didn't get to watch the John F. Kennedy's and the Rev. Martin Luther King's of the world affect positive change in the world. We were brought up with the Ronald Reagan's and Al Sharpton's. In other words, we got the coal, not the diamonds. We grew up knowing that the system could screw you over, but believed that we couldn't do anything about it. Everything else that is trivial became very important in our lives: school, work, relationship, the war on drugs. We were led to believe that these things mattered, and politics were best left to the politicians. Think I'm wrong? Ask a group of your friends what they think about the state of the world and see what they say. They only regurgitate what they saw 20/20 or the McNeil/Lehrer Report. They don't really have thoughts of their own, just party lines that they toe up to. I know this is not the case with everybody, but I'm going somewhere with this(or maybe not), so bear with me.

Dig this, as much as my peers like to talk smack about the hippies, at least they tried. They may be dirty and have long hair, but they attempted to change society by protesting and setting an example of what they considered a utopian society. Kids now simply sneer and buy stickers at Hot Topic. Do you think that Live Aid changed the establishment's mind on anything? No. We almost pride ourselves on being languid to everything that society throws at us.
I would almost rather go back to living with hippies all the time because at least they cared enough to try and affect change. They are active in local politics. They form grassroots movements to get their agendas on local ballots, and they vote actively. Most punks I know don't even vote. Hippies also have pressed foward alot of ideals that punks now embrace like veganism and recycling. Punks did not come up with these things, dirty hippies did. That's why longhairs work in most health food stores. Don't think that being vegetarian is punk rock exclusively, it isn't. You know who you are, Ted!
If fact, much of the rebellion that we enjoy as punks got it's blueprints from the hippie movement. I don't want you to think that this rant got it's basis from me being a hippie long ago, it is simply the truth. Some of the "gutter punks" that I hung out with in Berkeley were born on communes. Chicken George, Raz and Torch are just a few that were brought up on the same hippie commune in Oregon.
Their parents taught them how to express yourself in a unique way, and what it was like to be antiestablishment and what it was like to be proud of being different. Are you getting the picture now? However much shit you might talk about the hippies, realize this: they did more than we will ever do as a movement. All we have influenced was fashion and music. Big fucking whoop. We got overshadowed by glam-metal and grunge. Hippie rock is still being played on 30% of the radio stations in the San Francisco Bay Area (God bless it). How many mainstram stations are playing punk? Two? Maybe that's being too generous. Depending on how elitist you are, it could be as little as none. Music isn't the only thing, guys, there is a world out there. Rise up! Do something with the potential power you, as a group, have. We could cause a movement that could really be of benefit to the rest of humanity. Actively protesting works wonders, I have witnessed this myself.
To all the anarchists out there, please don't front the "I'm against everything!" vibe. It just makes us all look stupid. You can't really be anti-everything without being pro-something. With any drive, you could potentially change the world. with this knowledge comes great power. Use it wisely, young Jedi.

We, as a young society(some of us maybe not so young), have lost our faith and enthusiasm for the democratic process. The reason dried-up racists like Strom Thurmond refuse to give up their postions in Congress is because they don't trust the current generation to make wise choices in seats of power. We have not given them any evidence to the contrary. Let's change that. We can't simply write off this generation and let our children take the reigns. This isn't a game of Hot Potato. We need to show our children that we can stand up for our ideas. Like it or lump it, we are the architects of our oun future. What we do in the next twenty years will be the basis that our whole civilisation evolves. Deep? Yes. Full of shit? Well...most likely.
The moral: Get off your ass and do something.


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