How Do You Keep Going?
I have a million other things to do, but I must take a minute and ask, “How does a person keep going, when everything that comprises their overall situation seems to be going to hell in a handbasket?”
We are in a situation as a species, where we simply cannot continue to function as these distinct groups; i.e. Nations, Races, Religions, Genders, Political Factions, etc.. Our own ingenuity, inventiveness, basically evolution has brought us to a place where anyone can be just about anywhere on this weird rock in rotation around a burning ball of gas, can be in constant contact, including visually, with anyone else on the same rock. I have a brother who lives in Australia. I have gone there for a visit and it took nearly 36 hours of extremely exhausting travel to get there. And, that is because we can now travel across an ocean that would have taken years just about one hundred years ago (okay, maybe 150 years ago), in less than a day.
That was 20 years ago. Now I can hit one button, with one finger, on a device I can hold in one hand and be basically on his back porch with him and we can drink a glass of wine and watch the Australian fruit-bats fly overhead together. He can be right there with me when I am riding my motorcycle in Virginia and see just what I am seeing – as I am riding. I have attended business meetings with people in Minneapolis, San Francisco and Beijing; not from Minneapolis, San Francisco and Beijing, but each of us en locus (in those places!). We see each other, converse in real time and exchanged important documents, altered, edited and voted on final drafts in real time.
I have seen a new device advertised that is capable of translating any language, on the fly, into any other language and is the size of a standard hearing aide. While this may not be quite ready for International Marketing, you just know it will be, and soon.
I have six grandchildren. I am Caucasian (full blooded as far as I know). NONE of my grandchildren are. In one generation we have become a Rainbow Family. As a High School teacher for 30 years, I have seen my general student class make-up change from mostly white to just about an even split and the last few years to kids who were multi-racial. Many of them a mix within two generations of multi-colors and ethnicities. I had one student whose mother was a French Black woman married to an Arabic man who had parents who were Asian, Black and White jumbled all together. His mother was Catholic, his father was Muslim and one of his grandparents was Jewish. This ten-year old spoke five languages, two dialects of Egyptian, played the piano and the violin and was a member of the “Pi 100 Club”. He was great kid. He was one of several with nearly this kind of family.
I just don’t see how it is possible to stand in one place anymore and not realize that you can instantly be anywhere else on the whole planet, at least in perception, and believe that there can exist an US and THEM.
I had to retire from teaching because my own responsibilities went from writing one basic report on each of three three-month grading periods and attaching a letter grade for each student to – an on-line report on each student after every class. And to do so within the ten minute change period between classes or receive a reprimand. To do this and clean up and prepare for each successive class and then do all the prep for the next day after work (?), well, the stress became just too much.
And, I know I am not alone with this kind of daily work stress. The general global daily stress load for every single human has quadrupled, by my own observation, within my lifetime. In Developed Nations every single action by every single human can be, and often is, observed by every other human in those places. It is digitally recorded and stored in-the-cloud for fucking forever! Currently, in today’s world, if you are born in just a reasonably Developed Nation, you had better never fuck up (sorry for the language) EVER! From birth!
Hospitals, by law in this country, used to take a footprint of the right foot of every infant born and stick it on your Birth Certificate. That was it. A single copy of a hand type-written document, signed by Doctor and parents, with a little black ink footprint. The only proof you existed. When you turned 16 you could get a Social Security card with a number on it and a Driver’s License. The Driver’s License didn’t even have your picture, or anything on it, when I was sixteen. When you needed to prove you were who you said you were, you just showed your Driver’s License and said you were who this limp cardboard card said you were. And the response was always, “Okay”. I am 5’ 7”, my brother is 6’ 2”. We have the same last name. I could have flipped out his card and unless they bothered to read the tiny, tiny print, nobody would know!!!
When I was in College I got in and out of Canada AND Mexico, by walking across the border … ! If I was stopped I could have shown any kind of card that said I was George Washington (!) born in 1725 and nobody would have really questioned it. Of course, now they take a DNA sample, record it in about a thousand databases and you can be identified with 99% accuracy with a dab from the inside of your mouth. Or a hair follicle. Soon by a single skin cell left on any surface, anywhere, at any time. GEEZE!
All in all, even if the population doubles (which would not be a good thing actually) every human could be instantly located, almost instantly, almost anywhere, at any time. And, their identity be 100% established, instantly. WE have become a single beehive, with a single identity and truly a single purpose – to survive. The sooner as a Global Population, we recognize this as nearly fact … or soon to be a fact, the better our chances of not going down the dinosaur route.
So as a species, humans become one mind in billions of separate bodies. However, Free Will will always exist, as long as we are not actually physically co-joined (which is not only impossible, but would be a logistical nightmare). How would we get on and off the subway? Or decide on what to restaurant to go to – since part of us would already be there? It would be a problem. And since, Free Will would still exist, things like religion and indigenous cultural differences would still exist. With language ceasing to be a barrier, and language has been the actual greatest barrier for the length of our existence as a species, we are just going to have to learn to be tolerant and get along.
There really IS no other way to avoid an apocalypse. We have the capacity to also instantly kill each other by the millions in thousands of absolutely horrible ways. You never feel the urge to take out your family and true friends, so that is what WE have to become; accept each other as Family.
That’s it, really. That’s the ONLY way forward and out of the conundrum we find ourselves in.