Flip on the TV and observe the following headlines:
Child Killed in Local Community. Country Falls Into a Civil War. Natural Disaster Destroys Homes. World Poverty Rises.
The overabundance of news constantly sending out messages of causalities, emergencies and worldwide obstacles. It becomes too much, some say. Why depress yourself? Today was like yesterday, and it will continue tomorrow.
So just turn it off. Cut it out. The news is just too depressing. Ignorance is bliss.
The images of dead bodies, the screams of children and the guilty void of hopelessness becomes overbearing. So with power of one finger, the OFF button becomes our escape from reality.
And poof, it’s all gone. No more crying children, no more blood, no more poverty, no more guilt. Our flat screen TV’s, gleaming smart phones and HD radio’s are all off. Ignorance is truly bliss.
But on the opposite side of the world, where is the off button? Where is this magical square miracle that one can press and the sight of the dead father, the raped mother, the hungry child and the demolished homes can simply vanish? Where is it?
For our ignorance is their reality.
For our mute buttons cannot mute the cries of the raped woman in Afghanistan. It cannot mute the bombs in Syria. Our mute button cannot mute the screams of the starving children in Africa.
Our OFF button that so fortunately turned our TV screens black from the bloodly battles in Palestine and the human trafficking in the Philippines is the same blackness that is seen in Pakistan when they lose electricity every night.
For then is ignorance truly bliss?
“You can close your eyes to the things you do not want to see, but you cannot close your heart to the things you do not want to feel.”
And although you may have the luxury of closing your eyes and ears, let it not come to the point where we close our hearts. Desensitizing to one another’s struggle is not the solution, in fact, is only adds to the problem.
So instead of pressing your OFF button, you may want to turn UP the volume. Turn it UP so you may begin a discussion with those around you, educate. Turn it UP so that you may learn new ways to help them, donate. Turn it UP so that you may find resources to become part of the solution, communicate.
For the world’s problems may never end, no one said it was meant to be perfect. But at the end of the day, it is our world. If the roles were switch, wouldn’t you want someone to hear you out, or would you rather be turned OFF?
Just because you can, don’t. For ignorance is no longer bliss, it becomes darkness, just like your turned OFF television screen.