P for Political and P for Participation

Optimism supporters might find it boring, whereas people who are in favor of pessimistic ideas will protest against. But still, I want to express my point of view in international political developments.

Donald Trump is the new President of the United States, while at the same time Theresa May is seeking to trigger Article 50 and implement the so much expected Brexit. You think this is bad news and probably you are right. But what are we doing to change this? Protesting and signing online petitions, especially after something happens, really, do you believe this is all you can do? Well, if you want an extra opinion, then just ask yourselves what do you want and what is the ideal condition you want to create. Of course, not everyone has the same needs and wants but as Adam Smith used to say, there is an “invisible hand” pushing things go ahead when individuals tend to make choices about themselves. The thing is to decide to make a choice instead of abstaining. And when I say abstaining, I mean every kind of absence from the political life: regional problems, national issues and global affairs. Elections is the top symbol of democracy and, to be honest, one of the few remaining. There is an urgent need for political representation all around Europe. It’s true that politicians are not behaving always the way they should and sometimes the situation goes out of control. This is exactly the time when my, your and everyone’s opinion matters most.

When a well-dressed guy (or woman –we are not discriminating) is giving a speech, do not let media shape your opinion and guide your decisions. Dedicate time, give the chance to somebody who is speaking either to convince you or to strengthen your opinion against him. Framing in politics is a key for smart politicians, but it might be proven dangerous when this framing is under the edit of the press or the intermediator between you and the speaker. We need to be real-time informed about everything because we are shaping the environment, in which we live in. This is not easy and it becomes even more challenging when you have to critically comment on an issue, given that you have studied history and you have understood how easily can disastrous developments occur if we are not careful enough. Therefore, anger, hatred, fear or any other emotional factors need to be avoided, especially if critical thinking is what we want to use in order to analyze various political developments. And because I already referred to a liberal example in order to strengthen my argument, Karl Marx theories need to be underlined as well. If we want to become this accomplished personality, if we do believe in pure humanism and in progress, then we cannot deny the lifestyle this great person suggested 2 centuries ago: “equip” our individuals with knowledge and principles and work on ourselves by participating in the overall social life.

Let’s be more specific now by taking the USA example. A lot of you might be wondering why Mr. Trump is the new President of the United States. The question, though, is not why, but “how”. Everyone following US politics would know that the electoral system in the US does not give the nomination to the candidate who collects the majority of votes, but it is the swing states, which can determine the outcome. So, even if Ms. Clinton swamped Trump in popular vote, the so-called Electoral College led to a Trump victory. What would have happened if people were more concerned? The political campaign of Trump would have been completely different (something that he admits too), the emphasis would have been put in all states and thus Clinton would have had now access to the Oval Office of the White House. Because the majority of the people believed in Clinton rather than Trump ,this doesn’t mean that they all got out to vote. The problem was that Trump had more passionate voters who endorsed his campaign and were ready to cast their vote on him. And when it comes to media, there was an obvious effort to hinder the success of Trump by filtering the message he distributed. This led to negative advertisement and owing to the fact that Trump (let’s be sincere) had a clearer message than Hillary, people got brainwashed. The dilemma, in the end, was clear. Either anti-establishment Trump with fierce rhetoric and radical solutions or the continuity-oriented policy of Clinton, which actually had no clear and distinctive message. Taking the tough situation, in which America is, it was expected for the American citizens to take the risk and vote for Trump, because surveys have illustrated that in times of gains and prosperity, people seem to be risk-averse, while in times of uncertainty, people tend to go for the gamble. And this goes for the “why” Trump is the new President of the United States.

International political developments seem very alarming. This alarm is to remind us that it’s up to us if we want the X or the Y situation. We cannot turn the time back, but we do have the ability to never let it happen again. It’s us who deserve it most.

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