There was once a time I didn’t take much notice of the world around me. There were no holy wars in my small universe, there were no presidential elections in different countries, there were no drowned polar bears, no Edward Snowden and no NSA. All I knew was that I had to get up in the morning, because that’s what my upbringing had taught me. I knew that in the morning you ate breakfast and at lunchtime you ate lunch, dinner in the evening. I would go about my chores and I would absorb whatever people told me. They told me how to behave and that was fine. I didn’t see a problem, but then something happened.
I was picking up a friend for dinner. As I waited for her downstairs, I could not help but stare at the curiously flickering box in their living room. It was showing images of a fight. There were guns involved, bigger than I’d ever seen before and a pair of words in large, bold writing: Arab Spring.
I knew what spring was and I sort of knew what Arab meant due to having seen “Lawrence of Arabia” with Peter O’Toole.
From that day on, I started looking out more. Whenever I was visiting someone with a television – because that’s what it was – I would watch the news. I learned so many things about the world. Later I discovered the news paper too. It was amazing how many things there were still left to learn.
Now I know that terrorists are bad and that it’s okay to shoot them. I know that democracy is good and dictatorships are bad. I see clearly now that Putin is evil and that effort for climate change is hopeless. Suddenly I feel so smart now that I have been told all these things.