Tuesday, May 24, 2011


I recently witnessed a conversation that made me ponder. Basically the gist of the dialogue was a dicussion of why each party reads the paper and the inner turmoil of getting the newspaper and not reading it and then canceling subscriptions and then having a great pull to know the news etc. to reengage a subscription. the statement that caused an internal reaction was this "I dont want to be one of those uneducated"

well...it turns out that I am one of these uneducated. YAY ME!!

this is what I am going to say about this.

I have spent so many years listening to people talk politics, debate, go back and forth, sitting at a coffee table with long dissertations of whos doing what, who killed who, why this is doing what to who, how much we are surrounded by our own gluttony, how fucked we are environmentally, how much we are destroying the planet, what corrupt asshole has taken over whatever country, what other corrupt asshole has managed to pull a financial fast one thousands of peeps, what laws are fucking us now, how much quicker we are going to die, what movies star fucked which and is now having a baby with whomever else, which country will kill us all first, how many thousands of people are dying of starvation or are dying of diabetes, how many guns we have, how we are overpopulated, how fat we are, whose sexier and skinnier than you, who has more money, and then the cherry on top how much anxiety we have.

Witnessing this dialogue being incessantly volleyed continuously makes me wonder, does sitting around this table comparing notes and dropping names and headlines help? what benefit is this dialogue doing? are solutions being made? are plans being drawn up to work on this? NO i dont think I have ever heard of any solution-based political discussions. This is my observations, as the conversations escalate, voices raise and speech speeds up, faces turn red, people interrupt to get their snippet of knowledge in, then more interruption to counter that interruption, volume goes up more, then an overall sense of weakness, helplessness, and then exhaustion and resentment of the world. then you go home and try to sleep.

If only I could have heart rates measured during these discussions, it would be a fascinating experiment.

if being uneducated means not reading the news, well, this retard is happy to be uneducated.

an added bit of feedback from a wise soul : only people who are affraid of being uneducated or seen as stupid feel a MUST NEED to keep up with current events


Clayton said...

It's an interesting thought to consider, and while I agree that oftentimes politically-motivated conversations lead to nowhere and most people don't have any actual solutions to the problems they speak of, I would also argue that simply avoiding the news is not the answer. Sure, it's fine for a certain % of the population to not give a shit about current events, but when everyone stops paying attention, that's when then the real assholes can get away with murder to extreme levels not even comparable to what's happened these days. Just my thought.

Sheryl said...

Hi Erika!
First, allow me to sincerely apologize if at any time you were offended or made to feel judged during this past weekend. You must think me a shitty host.

But also I'd like to defend my position. In my beautiful state right now, we have a governor who is quickly and gleefully stripping Wisconsin of its proud progressive history. He unilaterally stripped unions of the right to bargain for fair wages and safe working conditions. He is sucking money from public education while giving tax cuts to rich corporations. He is kicking thousands of needy individuals and families out of the publicly subsidized healthcare program. He's rolling back rights for gay families. He is making it easier to pollute our beautiful lakes. I could go on and on.

I can only imagine what he'd be doing if nobody was paying attention. Fortunately, many of us are. This spring, tens of thousands of people protested at the capitol for weeks and weeks. We occupied the capital rotunda where we visited Saturday morning. We organized. We signed petitions. Yes, there has been anger and namecalling and arguing. But there was mostly peaceful, nonviolent action taken in the name of fairness for all living beings. There has also been legal action. In fact, a judge found that some of the actions the Governor has taken may not just be immoral, they may also be unconstitutional, and so has put a restraining order his main piece of legislation. Hooray for peaceful action!

I truly believe that my practice does not just happen when I'm sitting on my cushion. I believe that every action I take has a direct effect on the world, and that to act with kindness, compassion, and intelligence is the highest form of spiritual practice. And so I stay informed, so I can act accordingly.


Anonymous said...

It makes sense why you may assume I thought you were a shitty host given my blog post. And yes, you were the one who said that people who dont read the paper are the uneducated, which did puncture and hurt, and it felt judgemental which thus led me to volley back in judgement.

I thought you to be gracious and beautiful inside and out, and know that your involvement, hobbies, readings are what make you intriguing and special. I think it is great everything that you are doing and you are right about not just sitting on your ass and doing nothing. I agree whole heartedly, and I appreciate your feedback on my post.

It seems as if the translation that is being read is the not reading the news means being uninformed and that people who do such just sit on their asses and are uneducated. This is quite the contrary, I can give you a list of things I do to contribute to this society but I dont want to go into a back an forth about that. I can also give you a list of people that do amazing things that are not political activists, i wont do that either.

I thought you were lovely and wish that you can see the beauty of your art and share that with the world as well, I felt great tenderness toward you and your quiet strength.

once again, thanks for the feedback,
I hope this dialogue doesnt stop conversation, but if it does, I totally understand.

Sheryl said...

My dear ninja, of all the lovely people and ideas I encountered this weekend, you were by far the loveliest! I totally respect your fiery indignation. If it sounded like I was saying that people who don't read the NYTimes are lazy and ignorant, then I badly miscommunicated. In fact, people who engage in social action based on what they feel in their bones, and what they encounter in the real world, are far truer and braver than those who civilly pontificate over this or that piece of legislation. I strive to be among them. xo

Anonymous said...

Bold Samurai :)
I couldnt have said it better than you. i think you are accomplishing your goal of action versus stagnation with grace and wisdom. Rock on sista!

Chris Jones said...

I completely understand how you feel. If only people took action instead of just griping, maybe the world would be qa better place :)