I was scrolling through my Facebook feed as I do more than I probably should, and I saw a post that said:
If you have a complaint, then you must have a solution.
I agree that it can often be exhausting and potentially counterproductive to just be shouting into the void all the time (I’m guilty!), and we can become paralyzed by the depth of the problems that exist in our worlds and world (damn I’m guilty again!).
Also I find is that a ton of energy is wasted in this world by implementing solutions that don’t work. Sometimes the solutions we enact actually make things worse (see Masanobu Fukuoka – One Straw Revolution).
I believe that good solutions can be found only if we truly understand the problems surrounding an issue first.
Let’s start with some examples…
Criminal (in)Justice System:
Locking people up is our society’s main solution to dealing with people our justice system deems to be criminals. However, no major part of the criminal justice system addresses the fundamental reasons why people commit crimes in the first place and changing our society in a way that would prevent crime from needing to happen.
Our criminal justice system is also more accurately described as a vehicle designed to keep people in line with whatever the ruling parties decide is lawful, which oftentimes strays far from moral or ethical considerations.
Cyntoia Brown, who at age 16 was victim of sex trafficking, killed her 43 year old abuser, and was then tried as an adult and sentenced to life in prison. Fortunately, after her fight to get eyes on the situation, the general outrage of the public, and the attention of celebrities, Cyntoia is now awaiting a federal appeal (fingers crossed for her freedom). Technically she broke the law, but how could this even be considered justice being served in the situation?
Crime itself happens because we live in a society that of a system that is inherently racist and classist, which creates scarcity from abundance, tears down the natural world around us and replaces it with our man’s creations, and man’s laws.
Crime is the product of a system that subjugates people to cruel living conditions, terror, hunger, poverty, mundane existences, and unfulfilled dreams.
Power and profit-hungry interests run this world we’ve created. We’ve bought into the insanity of how our society says humans should live. It’s woven into the fabric of the Red, White, and Blue and it’s no wonder our country incarcerates more people than anywhere else in the free world.
The Rent is too Damn High!
The rent is too damn high because because greedy developers and landlords hold most of the land, just like they did in the days of the monarchy. Some pretty good solutions are being proposed, like rent control measures (see Costa Hawkins repeal), but we need to look at the fundamental problem that exists, which is the inequality of land ownership in America, and worldwide in order to find solutions that work.
Hunger & Poverty:
The main “solutions” to address the global problem of hunger over the last decades involve entrusting profit-driven and politically-connected corporations like Monsanto to provide for the food security needs of nations across the entire world.
Why don’t the billions (perhaps trillions??) of dollars put in the hands of corporations and top-down, trickle up organizations go directly to the people to empower them to build their own future? (spoiler alert: it’s because the people administering the aid often don’t want that…)
In addressing poverty in general, the worldwide State/NGO-sanctioned response has rarely (if ever) change the fundamental inequalities that exist, the plunder of resources by corporate and state interests, exploited labor, and the land degradation from poor agricultural practices
Perhaps if the problems were better understood and centered the fundamental needs of people, the solutions proposed to hunger and poverty in communities might look a little different.
I would venture to say that most of the “solutions” proposed for the problems we face in this world today are band-aids or remedies for symptoms that fail to address the fundamental diseases that are affecting humanity at this time.
Sure, I appreciate and understand the value in working to address the immediate needs. All I’m saying is that eventually the dam will break and we need to change course with solutions that focus on the root of the issue.
The work we do just to heal a tiny piece of the world adds up even if it’s just working on ourselves.
Time to undo the brainwashing
Modern-day humans have so many influences telling us what to think and how to think, and how to be, and what to see, and fucking hell I can’t take it anymore! There is so much brainwash and bias out there from like 90% of the shit I see online from modern publications (my publications not exempt from bias either 😉)
We need to read and understand the real history, not the bullshit watered down version we got as kids. We need to read up on the history of colonization of continents, the ones we stand on today, and the forces at play leading up to the modern day legal system as we know it.
We need to understand the history and legacy of slavery and how White Supremacy is coded into law and into the fabric of our society.
Perhaps we need to go back to the beginning of civilization and of agriculture, to the metaphorical “Fall from the Garden” to see what’s going really on (see Ishmael by Daniel Quinn).
We need to understand our place as but one being of many on this planet.
Our solutions need to be fundamentally aimed towards decolonization. Decolonization of stolen lands and decolonization of our minds and our prejudices that we’ve absorbed from our society.
If you came here looking for answers, you came to the wrong place. If I’m just shouting into the void and cursing the problem…so be it. Maybe I’m not an “answer person” but really I’m nobody in this whole situation.
To quote Bill Mollison, one of the thought-leaders of the modern-day Permaculture movement:
Although the problems of the world are increasingly complex, the solutions remain embarrassingly simple
There are lots of people implementing these solutions!!
I meet these people everywhere!!! I’m sure you do too. They are the wise grandmas, and the kids, and the adults who are still kids at heart. The youth who start movements. They are the visionaries who see forwards and are building a future for The People, the storytellers and historians who remember backwards and offer guidance so we don’t repeat our same mistakes, the healers, the skeptics, writers, musicians, artists, and dancers.
They are the people on the streets, in the courtrooms, and all-to-often in prisons fighting for justice and equality for all. They are those who will lend a hand for anybody in need regardless of who they are. They are the ones who haven’t lost their humanity. They are all the pieces of those things inside of us all.
We all connect to it still and hold that flame alive in some way.
People are working to regreen the deserts in Rojava. India planted 66 Million trees in 12 hours in 2017. There are people fighting for renters rights, and for land justice. There are criminal justice reform efforts and efforts for indigenous sovereignty in the colonized Turtle Island. There is hope…
This is just my two-cents…I’m sure some of my thoughts are half-baked at this point but it’s something that’s been on my mind and feel pretty passionate about. I’m genuinely curious to hear what y’all think, so feel free to leave a comment. Be respectful please 🙂