Speak your mind another time

By BenitaZepeda

Recently, “The Daily Show” host Jon Stewart announced his idea for the “Rally to Restore Sanity,” which is scheduled to take place on Oct. 30 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

In case you haven’t heard about the rally, it is an opportunity for the average person to mildly voice his or her opinions about politics and such—but only if he or she can fit it into his or her schedule.

Well, what exactly does this mean?

Stewart described the perfect attendees as “people who think shouting is annoying, counterproductive and terrible for your throat; who feel that the loudest voices shouldn’t be the only ones that get heard; and who believe that the only time it’s appropriate to draw an Adolf Hitler mustache on someone is when that person is actually Hitler, or Charlie Chaplin in certain roles.”

So many people have valuable messages and ideas, but they don’t speak up because they think their voices won’t matter.

Thus, there seems to be some validity to this event.

Society, as it stands right now, is prone to polarized debate about which ideals and views are correct, which laws should be passed and which cold-hearted politician is going to be least corrupt.

I must preface my argument by admitting that I fit into that majority of people who are neither extreme right wing nor extreme left wing. In fact, I choose not to label myself at all, but if I absolutely had to, I would most certainly lean toward liberal.

Whatever happened to the idea that the vast majority of people in our country should speak up? Why is it we claim to have such strong opinions and statements, yet, we rarely brawl against the bigger mouths to make our ideals and hopes reality?

It’s because we are comfortable, somewhat lazy and—in comparison to many other parts of the world—wealthy. We have become content with the material and monetary luxuries our is offered to us on a daily basis.

Perhaps the reason we are too afraid to actually stand up for what we agree with is because we have become somewhat brainwashed into fearing that our opinions won’t matter against the extreme ones. If we step out of line, those luxuries we have could be taken away. Heaven forbid I take a stand against the government, my boss or even my parents—it’s daunting to speak up.

Any type of nonconformity may backfire because people like myself have so much to lose. We are forced to conform. This isn’t saying that all authority is bad either because it provides us with great privileges.

But we shouldn’t fear our government or different ideologies, extreme or not. They should fear us, the people. We should stand up for what we agree with, even if it isn’t headline worthy. If we continue living with indifferent mentalities, our existence here may crumble. Face it, our society isn’t prone to change.

Like many, Stewart points out our flaws: indifference and narcissism. If it doesn’t directly affect someone, chances are there will be no true impact on one’s opinions. People, society, war and debt—it could all change with the simple effort of a community.

But hey, maybe not tomorrow: We’re all just a little bit too busy today.