Being Wholeheartedly Woke
This isn’t even an argument as much as it is me telling you that no matter how much you want to bury your head in the sand, the world will kick down your door and unceremoniously maul you. No matter how much you want to justify your infantile unwillingness to sit up and give a damn about what happens outside of the tiny universe that revolves around you, there is no reason not to be aware of the events that influence the world in which you live. That situation over in that country that everyone has been paying attention to- that situation will point and laugh as it goes home from the party with the girl you so desperately want to impress because you were too busy doing three-fifths of fuck all your entire life to pick up a newspaper.
I’m not going to blame pop culture or falling attention spans or make claims that some people are just interested in other things. You can consume a steady diet of Dancing with the Stars, Game of Thrones, and Kanye West tweets while still finding time to be halfway clued up on what the Prime Minister is up to. You don’t even have to be all the way clued up. You just have to put some effort in. If you don’t, then nobody will find you interesting, and you’ll realise you exist in a circle of friends whose only sources of conversation are either that time you did something or in-jokes about that time you did something. Nobody likes those sorts of people. If you weren’t one, you wouldn’t like them either.
‘Ignorance is bliss’, they say. This is a lie. What you don’t know can hurt you, and it hurts you worse than what you do know. It may be a phrase well-meant, but it is most certainly is the tinfoil shield of cowards whose laziness they disguise with false nonchalance, crying out ‘I don’t even care about politics, man’ as everyone else who invested a modicum of effort and interest in learning about the world glides past them, uninterested in whatever half-baked, embarrassing opinion they hold.
The good news is, even if you are a man afraid of the sheer scope of everything happening in the world and struggling to find a place to start, there is hope. Just pick up a book, or read an article, or try that old-fashioned thing called ‘asking a friend’. Whatever you do, don’t be swayed by the other page telling you your bubble of ignorance is safe. It isn’t. Things will happen, and if you aren’t aware, they will murder you in your sleep. Or at the very least make you look silly and uninteresting in front of your peers. And hell, if you know something, then you might even be able to make the world a better place.
Being Blatantly Ignorant
I swear there must be no greater bliss on the planet than being one of those completely clueless, sweetly naïve folk who wanders around absolutely unaware of the world around them, in their little world full of apple pies and daisies. At least, that’s what I imagine it’s like because that’s the level of happiness I feel when election season ends, and we don’t have politics rammed down our throats until they reach our actual spleen any longer. That is the point where I may resume my normal existence, which is primarily based upon pointedly ignoring the news as much as basic social interaction necessities allow me.
With all the juvenile serial killers, white cisgender supremacists, government spying, diminishing of the ozone layer, Big Pharma corruption and the general decay of social interaction in our world today, who would really want to be woke anyway? I’m pretty sure a clinical depression diagnosis isn’t too far off if you delve too deep, too consistently, because the goings-on in the world is depressing AF.
Instead, I propose living in a state of sweet, sweet ignorance. Because fuck, if we’re lucky enough to live in a developed nation equipped with basic survival needs, financial support and access to higher education, we’re among the lucky few. Therefore I propose we revel in our luxurious (namely) big-worry-free lifestyles and live like your favourite rapper: kick off your shoes, lax on a yacht somewhere, fuck bitches, don’t read current affairs. I mean, who needs the extra emotional burden? Won’t that interfere with your rap genius?
So yeah, sure, you want to sound cultured. But really, I would say the percentage of the daily conversation I have that revolves around the news is pretty damn low. Even then, I feel like a grumpy old man waving his cane at the television if I grumble about taxes or something. Don’t waste the energy, dude.
It’s like the paleo diet; only this is more based on any evidence whatsoever. Being ignorant will keep you happy. It may well piss off your peers or give you a reputation as a ditzy blonde, but you won’t care. You’ll be too busy enjoying the splendours of your worry-free days frolicking in Swedish meadows, while the haters gain hunchbacks, wasting their evenings away, furiously scrolling through the Stuff website – ignoring the abhorrent formatting – and looking for more things to get angry over or share on Facebook without any intention of actually doing anything about the issue at hand.