The Power of Social Media

I think too many people don’t realise the power social media has in today’s society. Social Media allows us to remove so much censorship that the mainstream media is full of and allows the people to collectively share and express their perspectives on different issues. It allows us to organise and use the power the masses are capable of.

This summer I first hand witnessed the power of social media. With Operation Protective Edge in full steam in Gaza, Palestine with Israel lashing out violently on the Gaza strip killing thousands including children. I’m not going to go in depth into the conflict here, perhaps for another post.

Back to Gaza, this summer over social media I saw the atrocities and what was really happening, without the mainstream media and the very biased and one sided argument on display there. Malcolm X once said, “If you’re not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.”

The media did just that to so many people.

Thanks to social media though (Twitter and Facebook mainly) protests were organised, and other forms of action and groups were organised. It united people in a sense, and I believe if social media doesn’t fall into then wrong hands it can go very far in the impact it has on the world and social change.

Essentially what I’m going at is that media isn’t bad, because social media is another form of it too, what I’m saying is it is powerful. And the mainstream media sadly is controlled and we need to see the truth for ourselves. Sites like Twitter give us access to the many versions of the truth, after that you are free to make your own judgements.

Fear vs Respect

Apologies to everyone as no post has come up for almost two months. This is partially because of things going on, getting busy and writers block.

Some people cannot tell the difference between fear, and respect. In truth the two are very distant, and it would be a mistake to mix them up.

The two are usually in terms of the feelings towards a person, so is it you fear the person or respect them? They are normally in terms of how people feel towards a leader, may it be of a group of friends at school or a president of a country. Now what is the difference between a person who is feared? Compared to a person who is respected?

An example of fear to me are usually dictators, or cruel leaders. Usually get into power through corruption, so no one really wants them there really either. Some examples would be Stalin, General Franco, Mubarak, or current world Putin dare I say it. All of these men are not listened to because they are respected, it is simply because people fear them. Fear of getting punished if disobeyed, or facing consequences if not supporting them. I mean just a while ago a bunch of protestors were beat and ruthlessly hit in Russia, are we not allowed to speak up even?

Then, you have respect. I’m gonna choose Nelson Mandela, simply because with his death almost everyone knows him now. People listened to Mandela not because if you didn’t he would jail you (ironic considering he was sent to prison for speaking out, “treason” they said) but simply because people liked him. They wanted to listen to him, they felt a sense of charisma about him. Charisma is partially because you’re a good listener, a good leader who listens. They listen to him, because they respect him.

This isn’t a stupid post off topic, this also applies to leaders of maybe an unofficial group of friends at school or work. If you notice, they all have a thing in common. The jerks are cool at school until around grade 8 where people hang out with others based on personality and who they are. Jerks with jerks! The ones that are respected don’t look to boss around, they naturally have a charisma
and listen. People like someone who listens and cares, because would you rather have the football jock telling you what to do or that nice kid who doesn’t care what others think and does what he feels like? Exactly. Its like asking do you want Mandela as president or do you want Putin at the helm?

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What Does Moving On Mean?

People always tell you to move on, to forget. They tell you forget the past, live today. Should we forget?

Forgetting the past is forgetting who you really are. It’s forgetting your identity and what defines you. Even with a bad past, its your story and life. To forget would be forgetting yourself.

When people tell you to move on, they’re right. A lot of people live in the past. They cry every day because of what happened before, and because of yesterday they waste today. To move on, is not to forget. Moving on is not all that scary either if you think of it. People don’t want to let go, they grip on to what’s left.

To move on simply means to make new memories. Make new and better memories and let go of the past. Remember but don’t live on the past.

In life, people come and go. Death happens, people break up, relationships fall apart. Its part of life, and the sooner you live with it and realise it, the better.

“Don’t count the days, make the days count.”

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Are Safety Features Actually Safe?

A while ago I realised one thing. It led me to asking myself, are safety features actually safe? Or are they just asking for trouble?

A couple days ago my class went on a skating trip. Renting helmets was a requirement. Personally, with a helmet I went faster than I really should have in yhe beginning, resulting in many falls. Personally I loved the trip but I realised because of the helmet, I was willing to go faster and try stunts. The same applies to bikes and motorcycles. Except on motorcycles its not just a bruise, but maybe a broken leg or even your life.

Until helmets were introduced to the NHL the amount of injuries were considerably less. Their were injuries, but more deadly injuries. As helmets came into the NHL, players thought they could do stupid things. The severity of injuries decreased, while the amount of injuries actually increased.

Helmets are just one example. Air bags, seat belts, and many more features that are supposed to be safe actually increase injuries. Humans think that now we are in a way indestructible, they do stupid and more dangerous stunts thinking they are safe. Because of this we have more injuries. Then comes the question, although the amount of injuries increase, more lives are saved by preventing severe injuries. So are these features actually good?

From my point of view, ten broken legs are better than one dead person. From a money point of view, the cost is higher treating ten legs rather than trying to save one person from dying.

In the end it really comes down to personal opinion. Ten physically disabled people or one person’s life?

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Slavery and its Relation to Poverty

One of the causes of poverty along with war, colonization, and a community’s general attitude is slavery. Now a cause is what enabled poverty to happen, this is not a factor, in other words what keeps poverty alive in today’s world.

Throughout the course of history, people have gone in, taken slaves, and sold them into labor and houses. Roman empire, USA, Arabia, etc. Almost everywhere its been done, and in a lot of places it still happens.

After spending hundreds of years in slavery, when that specific person is freed, they are unprepared. They were born into slavery and have never been outside into the world. They are unprepared, and don’t know the basic means of making a living. Thats why a lot of them end up being the lowest of lowest in a society.

Now these people who I dont blame, are the poorer sectors and are partially the cause of poverty in the first place. The children of these slaves end up with the same fate, and are equally as unprepared. A  perfect example of preventing this issue is slavery in Arabia post Muhammad PBUH era.

When the Prophet PBUH was in Arabia, slavery was a long time tradition. Slaves were tortured, hit, what ever it took to make them work, the owners did. The Prophet PBUH did not out right ban slavery, instead slowly faded it out of the society. Let the slaves do some of the jobs, get used to the environment. He didn’t say go you’re free, now live. For example, one particular slave named Bilal was tortured and beat by his owners. After buying the slave he slowly incorporated him into the society. Bilal went on to become the first man in Islam to do the Azaan, or call for prayer. A historical event in Islam.

Slavery is one of the many causes of poverty. And although it was avoided at some point, in most places slaves after being free men and women are not prepared for the world. Its like sleeping as a five year old, waking up when you’re forty and being expected to live. Its a tough life after slavery and some people have actually over come it, even though most have not. One of the main reasons poverty exists in the 21st century.

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Where slavery is still alive;


Where Slavery STILL lives. Map from The Washington Post

The Problem With The Media

Problems with the media? There are tons, and probably won’t fit here or you’ll fall asleep reading a 50 000 word essay. What I do think is a big issue is when a celebrity dies the world goes crazy, when in truth the world has bigger fish to fry.

Paul Walker I admit gave a lot to charity. And he did a lot of help and humanitarian aid. Yes I agree to some it was heartbreaking, but when you have hundred of thousands people dying and being slaughtered like animals around the world and the media gives that minimum coverage, in that case, “Houston, we have a problem.”

A couple of examples are Syria, Philippines, Palestine, Afghanistan, South Sudan, India, and many more are suffering daily. People dying daily, children crying daily. I find it ironic how we feel bad for the people that give to charity and die, but not the people who are dying. (Speaking of ironic its also ironic Paul Walker acted in racing movies like Fast And Furious, yet he died in a car crash clocking triple the speed limit.)

One example in particular that means a lot to me is the issue of Palestine. They have been blockaded for a while now, and have no fuel, clean water, goods, etc. Nothing is going in or out. Yet the media coverage it received is zero to none.

Today, Nelson Mandela, one of the worlds greatest hero died. I understand if people will mourn for him or feel deeply effected, but when twitter goes crazy for Paul Walker we have issues as a society.

I’m not saying offer your condolences to celebrities that pass away, I just think there are bigger issues not receiving any attention at all.

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Where Should You Set Your Standards?

Where do you realistically set your standards and ambitions in life? Towards the bottom with very little goals, or at the top with a lot of ambitions?

Setting a standard for yourself in anything is very important. Report cards, job interview, life goals, short term goals, etc. Where you set those standards is also very vital in achieving success.

Low Standards

Having low standards is never a good thing. Set them low and you enter the risk of not getting anywhere. Because if you set very low standards or very little amount of goals, you’re not moving forward or advancing in life. You’re glued to the spot, and wait too long the glue gets dried permanently.

High Standards

There’s no problem with dreaming, or setting high expectations. What there is an issue with is the risk of disappointment. Feeling like you’ve failed, and sometimes trying and wasting tons of time on things you know you can’t realistically get.

Realistic Standards

Set small goals along the way to a big goal. Make the goals realistic. The small goals are like checkpoints in a game, if you fall back there’s something to fall onto, like an extra life in a way. The goals have to be realistic, although I’m not saying put a limit on what you do. Because truly, there is isnt a limit. Impossible is nothing.