Don’t Just Look For The Helpers–Be A Helper!

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of disaster, I remember my mother’s words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.”–Fred Rogers

Whenever tragedy strikes, we remember Mr. Rogers’ words and spread his message all over social media. We take comforting knowing that there will always be people who care and will stand up when things are wrong. However, it’s no longer enough to just look for the helpers; in this day and age, we have to be helpers as well.

Just look at everything happening right now. Trump’s threatening North Korea on Twitter. Nazis are marching in Charlottesville, VA. Police officers who murder unarmed black people are getting off scot-free. Flint, MI still doesn’t have drinkable water. Malaysia is hunting down atheists.

What you are doing about it?

Seriously, what are you doing? Are you just sitting there watching everything unfold on your TV or computer? Are you saying, “That’s sad,” and going back to eating your dinner? Are you doing the John Mayer thing and just waiting on the world to change? Or are you saying, “Fuck this” and doing something?

Now look, I know what you’re thinking. You’re just one person, and these are global systems of oppression that have been operating since forever. You’re probably like me, also, in that you have limited resources. You either live in a rural area far away from a city, you don’t have a lot of money, you have some sort of disability (mental illness counts), or you have a hectic schedule. I totally sympathize with you. I live in the middle of nowhere, I’m trying to find a stable income, and I struggle with mental illness. I’m not blaming you for your situation. I’m just saying that there are things you can still do.

Join a local progressive group. Write to your local newspaper. Start a podcast. Donate your money or time to worthwhile causes. Pester your elected officials using either 5 Calls or Resistbot. Support local candidates that are fighting against the Trump regime. It may not be much, but at least it’s something.

The point is if enough of us get together and get our hands dirty, we can actually change things.


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