March for rights, not likes


Comic by Sam Rush

North Wind Staff

Sometimes it can feel as though we’re living in an era of activism. Frequently, people are taking to the streets to show their support for various political causes. This is in part due to social media increasing the degree to which people feel connected to each other. With the stroke of a finger, you can let all your friends know about the latest march happening and invite them to come show support. While this may seem like a catalyst for change, we’re concerned that some people aren’t marching for the right reasons.

Obsession with social media has become commonplace. People spend a lot of time trying to portray themselves in a certain way, and often go out of their way to do things for the sole purpose of posting it on social media. Political activism is not immune to this, and may even be especially susceptible.

What we end up with is marches riddled with uneducated people who are only there to be a part of the trend.When people who are participating in marches haven’t taken basic steps like calling their representatives, volunteering or even educating themselves on the topic, it seems less likely they’re marching to fulfill their civic duty and more likely they’re just trying to portray themselves as “woke.”

Change doesn’t work unless you do. In truth, if someone can’t answer a simple question like, “why are you marching?” intelligently, they have no business being there. In fact, they even threaten the credibility of the march with their presence, because if they do get asked a question by a news reporter or counterprotester that they can’t answer, it’s likely to end up in a YouTube
compilation ridiculing them.

People have no right to criticize what they don’t understand. Whether it’s interpersonal conversations or in a march through Washington, fighting for or against others when you aren’t educated on the issue is irresponsible and ignorant. Sit down and spend some time learning about the issues before you take to the streets.

As millenials, it can seem like there’s a lot of pressure to be involved, especially when it’s constantly circulated on social media. However, that doesn’t excuse irresponsibility. Civic engagement is a privilege and a duty, not something to post on Instagram for likes.