I am an activist, through and through. It’s stitched into my soul, entwined with my vital organs. If injustice is happening, I will fight it, to the best of my ability. I can’t just stand by. Forcing me to be compliant in the oppression of others would tear me in two.
(It’s an INFP thing, apparently. Ha.)
And here’s the thing: It’s not about injustice as a concept, necessarily. I mean, it is. Everyone should have an equal opportunity for happiness and health. But it’s about people. These are humans. You can’t dismiss racism as something abstract/that will never be defeated/that has already gotten as low as it’s going to. Prejudice is something that happens to people.
And the whole “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” thing makes me INCANDESCENTLY furious. You’re saying that people in poverty, people who are hungry and hopeless and dying, deserve to be there. You’re saying that their suffering is something that is directly derived from who they are as people. Even the children? Even disabled people who can’t work? Even people who work three jobs? Where do you draw the line? Who do you believe deserves to starve to death in a country with a food surplus?
And you can’t just wipe the slate clean and start over and magically create a utopia. It won’t happen. You’ve just got to do what you can. You just have to speak up, make it so the social consequences for being a racist/sexist/homophobic asshole are higher than they’re worth. Feed the people you can. Fight the battles that are there to fight. We live in a big old crumbling house of a country and we need to replace the plumbing and patch the holes in the walls.
(On another note – it looks like 2017’s going to be the year of Me Getting Angry. So. Look forward to that, I guess.)