In the past 3 months I have learned a great deal of things both in and out of the classroom. Being in Europe it was no surprise that our coursework focused mostly, if not entirely, on European issues. While I have learned many interesting things and enjoyed my time in each class I must say it seemed as if every day the professor had a new problem to teach us about. Problems in the south of Europe, problems with the periphery states, problems with the UK, problems with the Euro, problems with the refugee crisis, problems with the up coming olympics , problems with the elections in Spain, problems with global warming, problems with the youth, problems with the EU, problems with the Neo Nazi Fascists,problems with the trade agreements, problems with the prices of a cup of coffee… It seemed as if all we ever heard were problems.
You get problems, you get problems, everybody gets problems!!! You get the point.
Problems are a part of life, they’re always going to be there, but in Europe it seems that as soon as you solve one problem 4 more start up. There was just no winning. My father used to say “For every 1 problem you have, you have at least 100 solutions”.
When you’re just a 20 year old student sitting in a class realizing that we could talk about the problem for hours and come up with as many solutions as we want, but in the end we won’t fix the problem, we’ll barely even do anything to stop the issues. We will simply step outside the classroom and maybe talk about it for a few minutes and then just say “oh well I tried” and continue on with our day.
Normally that is exactly how it would have happened and we all know it. We are all quick to talk, but when it comes time to walk we all look at each other and expect someone else to do it. I don’t say this to make you feel bad, I say it in hopes that you realize that there is plenty you can do! For example there are 3 fundamental things that any average citizen can do to solve these issues (whether they be EU issues or even back in the States).
Number 1. Vote! It sounds a bit cheesy, maybe a bit too good to be true, but in reality it’s that simple. In most forms of government in the world you vote for someone to vote for you or you vote on things directly through referendums.
Number 2. Vote, but this time with money. If you buy organic foods, which tend to cost more, instead of the genetically modified foods you are telling the companies that make GMOs that you rather spend more money on organic foods. Since GMO companies are only in it for the money they will either change or they will perish.
Number 3. Donate money. Money talks, it’s that simple folks. On the way home from work there is this billboard that has a picture of a baby and reads “Every 20 seconds a baby dies from lack of vaccines. Become a partner.” and boy is it depressing. Rather than pout about it, you can donate money to the organization who is actually doing something about it!
So there you go, just 3 simple ways to do your part.
No, you can’t solve all the problems of the world, but if you have a heart then you can do your part! Whether you donate a dollar or volunteer and go all out front of the line then be my guest, but whatever you do just don’t do nothing at all!
An even simpler thing that we can all do is just talk about the issues, bring awareness to an issue that people might not even know existed. For example the refugee crisis in Europe; we heard about it in the States, but we didn’t really do anything about. Whether it was because we assumed someone else would do something about it, or because we were too busy, it doesn’t matter.. there should be no excuse as to why we aren’t helping.
I have written 6 research papers on all sorts of issues in the past few months, so believe me when I tell you that there IS hope, and it all starts with UNITY. If we all come together and do our part we can fix the problems, maybe not all, maybe not even most, but we can still try. After all it is a small world, and we’ve only got one of those! Hope isn’t just a thing with feathers anymore, it’s here and well, so let’s all help.