Oped: Don't bicker — get involved

Christian K. Harris
York College

Like most millennials, or most people, I spend a decent amount of my time on social media. We live in a world of “web 2.0” where anybody can say anything they want in the comment section of a news report, or on the news companies’ Facebook page, and they are.

Christian Harris

A quick scan through the comments of any news story has a multitude of people putting in their opinions, responding to said opinions, and fixing the issue how they see fit. The problem is, nobody cares what you have to say.

Okay, maybe that’s too harsh, because if people are replying to your comments they obviously care, but the people who will make the change are not. Even on your local representatives Facebook page, I doubt they read through the comments, find your expletive laced tirade, and make a policy change based on it.

What I am here to shout, at the top of my lungs, to my fellow Americans, to anybody who will listen, is stop wasting your time. All that time you spend bickering with people could be used calling your representative, senator, governor, and local political party, or organizing with like-minded individuals.

I do understand that social media has changed the way people get information and make decisions, but your Facebook comment feed isn’t going to change anything. What you need to do, as citizens, is to become more politically involved.There are a multitude of political parties and activist groups pushing for the same issues you are.Contact them. Just because you don’t identify as a Democrat or a Republican doesn’t mean you don’t have a voice.

There are many different third-parties in America, and before you say, “they’ll never get elected, why waste my time,” have you ever stopped and wondered why that is? They don’t get elected because they don’t get the votes because you and your like-minded Americans don’t care to support them.

Nothing in history was changed by playing it safe, and  political parties are the same way. Even if you’re happy with the major two parties you can still get involved with activist groups. Pick something you’re passionate about, I can bet you that you can find a local group. If not start one yourself. You can use all the time on social media to find other individuals in your area.

So, the next time you’re typing out a seven paragraph response to why there shouldn’t be a new casino built, stop, and call your local representative, or their staffer, and read them that seven paragraph response. Unlike the people on Facebook, you pay that representative to listen.

— Christian K. Harris is a senior at York College.