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How Do We Stop

07 / 05 / 2016

There are so many culturally troubling things that go on in our society. The western world is perplexing in the way it continues to chug along at damaging behaviours that one only has to zoom out and look at the bigger picture to realise. Obviously there is the way we eat that makes you ask 'what?! but that doesn't make any sense', to the way we raise our children to think of alcohol as this forbidden fruit that at a certain age has to be so fearlessly experimented with. Or then there's the way that death is so grimly portrayed behind a thick curtain to anyone below the age of 25, so much so that it's virtually unheard of to have someone die in their own home, surrounded by family and the place they feel most comfortable.

Obviously these things have snowballed over generations and didn't just pop up on the spot. Social changes and environmental development have played an undeniable role in it all, and the way the media subtly suggest/portray the everyday everywhere we turn seems to have spurred it on, so that it has gained an energy of its own.

So while it's a lot of external factors that make it hard to do anything else, there is still the ability that each and everyone of us have, which is to stand apart and forge onward with our holistic opinions, behaviours and methods, as we feel deep down that it's right.

Our society really very much likes to talk a lot about these complexities and do nothing about them. It occurred to me today as I took a course that I can add to my resume and plump it up a little (so to speak) that I was receiving responsible serving of alcohol advice from someone that clearly enjoys and delves into a the substance most frequently. Sure when she is sober it's all too easy to share stories of friends of friends that after drink driving found themselves in a coma or wrapped around a tree. It was also easy to talk about past situations where she quickly got tipsy at a function due to the free grog, or how she stole a pot plant as a teen because she really wanted it. But throughout that she was firm with the belief that it is all a past behaviour that she is over now. However, these "stories" seemed to be dotted throughout her life form here there and everywhere, from age 16 to a couple of weeks ago. There was definitely an element of "I am seriously not learning this information from someone who is walking the talk". Furthermore she was dead-set on not giving out more photocopies then necessary as it's a disgrace as to how we ruthlessly kill happy trees, in the prime of their life.

I appreciate this womens passion for what she does and wanting to save the odd limb of a tree with her ("limited") photocopying, but there is a clear observation to be made here, and that is actions speak louder then words because that is where you get change and furthermore improvements to the present. Yes behaviour changes are hard, but the alternatives are harder. Without judgment I think this lady should seriously consider not drinking. Or at lest not as much as she seemed to be boasting. She better then anyone knows that pointless deaths arise from supposedly "knowing our limits", and maybe she was exaggerating and does take responsibility 99.9% of the time, but just as the reality of our culture suggests, "is it really worth it?".

I don't hate people who drink. They are everywhere and I'd be a recluse if I did. A culture shift is what is needed for not only this drinking example but so many other behaviours in our culture. I just hope that we've reached the worst of it, the divot in the road, and can now shift such values and patterns for the better.