People always say that life is full of choices.
Why is it that when beauty pageant contestants are asked what their one wish would be, they always seem to say World Peace? Does this seem a little too consistent to anyone else, like maybe they’ve all visited the same lobotomy doctor?
Why not an end to famine, or an end to American obesity? Or heck, if you’re going to go that far into the realm of “anything’s possible” lobotomized thinking, why not just say “World Happiness” and leave it at that. I’m sure it would lead to World Peace, but the two are not necessarily mutually exclusive.
For example, there might technically be peace in America, but that doesn’t mean that thousands don’t go to sleep hungry. And loads of people committ suicide every day. As Aldous Huxley suggested in a Brave New World, peace all over the world won’t necessarily mean that everything is going to be okay.
We could have peace and subjugation, like in Orwell’s 1984. Or, we could one day reach peace simply because we’ve become too compliant to fight with each other. Maybe we’re all going to drown ourselves in pleasure until we’re either too fat or too stoned to care about anything, much less fighting for things we want or think we need.
Whatever the case, (and I know that this is an unpopular point of view) I don’t necessarily feel that peace is the answer to all of our problems. An end to fighting will not end hatred for the small-minded, just as an end to discussion will not end a difference in opinion.
I started thinking along this line of topic earlier when someone asked me what I would end, if I could end anything in the world. I thought about it for about two seconds. “Dishonesty” was my answer. In this, I meant that not only would people no longer feel the need or be able to lie to one another, but to themselves as well. Just think, about 70% of the world’s problems would become that much simpler.
No more murders going unpunished, because all we would have to do is ask someone if they did it, and they would respond. No more closet pornography addicts masquerading as husbands and fathers. Much less gossip, because people would only say what they knew to be true. No more relationship grief, no more cheating. Dating would be a cinch: “Do you like me?” “No.” “Okay then, thanks for playing.” No more crappy talk shows. Lawyers would be nearly obsolete. No more international terrorism: “Do you have a bomb?” “No.” “Okay then, have a nice flight, Mr. Abdul.” No more girls pretending to eat. No more wondering whether what a person is saying is genuine.
Not to be a downer on the human race or anything, but…
I think in all the world, the thing that has caused me the most pain over time has been not knowing the truth until it is too late, or being mislead by people I trusted.
Which is not to say that I’ve never lied. I have, and I know the shame that comes from knowingly presenting the opposite of truth, and the effects it can have on the world. If I could go back in time, I think the ONLY things I would change are things I have said that were either untrue in general, or untrue to myself as a person.
There is no despair greater than hindsight, the knowledge that you went down a path without letting yourself truly see what you were doing, or thinking about what your choices meant.
The embarrassment we face when we realize that we have led people to believe something that is untrue is kind of like building a huge billboard, and leaving it up for months at a time, and then being told that you have to stand up and correct it in front of everyone, and all the while we know that you did it wrong on purpose. Like cheating on a test, and then having it used as an example for the whole class to follow. (If I were a teacher, I think I would have used this tactic a time or two to help cheaters fess up.)
In short, (which, in all honesty, is a misnomer at this point) I think that the one thing that would make the world a better place TODAY, is if we all took a good look in the mirror, and re-examined ourselves to make sure that we are truly living the lives we seem to lead. If we all took a second to question our motives, or ask ourselves if we really believe the things that we say, wouldn’t things like war and hatred just kind of die out on their own?
And if they didn’t, at least we wouldn’t have to walk around in so many circles before we came up with a solution to each of the world’s problems.
I’m just sayin.