Please note, this is pretty negative, but I'm actually in a fairly good mood. Please don't think this is indicative of anything larger than the fact that I'm an emotional sponge and I need a nap.
What has happened to our optimism? How did the idealism get beaten out of us? I keep thinking back to high school and college. We were so determined, so ethical, so set on saving the world. We believed we could do it. We really believed we could make a difference.
I want that back.
I'm still hopeful, but I feel defeated. Many of us do. When I read that Cindy Sheehan has dropped out of the anti-war movement, I completely understood.
Her words are biting, but I believe they are true. Sure there are those who want to make a difference (on both sides of this debate), but in my experience, there are far more who are simply not concerned.
Here's an example from my world: I went back to lifting weights after I broke down at the gym last week. When one of my best friends there noticed I was upset and asked why, I pointed to the t.v. where anchors were analyzing Bush's speech. She shrugged her shoulders, pointed to her IPod around her neck and said, "Oh, I didn't bother with any of that. I just listened to my music." Mind you, this woman can tell you who was picked on the Bachelor. She can recount, in great detail, the past few episodes of Grey's Anatomy. She could not, however, be bothered to pay attention to the news. What's even more baffling? Her father is retired military. I just don't get it.
From the time I was a toddler, I was concerned with correcting injustice in the world. I have vivid memories from pre-school, grade school, high school and very definitely college where I felt compelled to step in and take a stand. I always believed one person could make a difference.
Even in my darkest days, when I suffered through depression and my friends declared, "You're so morbid," I still had an ember of optimism. I was pretty down on myself, but I usually had great hope for the rest of the world.
Where did that go? I miss those college days of rallies, poetry, articles, and all around optimism.