Why I’m Not Doing Social Media Activism Anymore…

and other things I do since I can’t afford therapy.

Capitalist realism… is more like a pervasive atmosphere conditioning not only the production of culture but also the regulation of work and education, and acting as a kind of invisible barrier constraining thought and action

Mark Fisher, Capitalist Realism
#EndSARS Protest Lawrence, KS

Do you remember when social media went blue for Sudan? The pussy hats at the women’s march? Do you remember when CNN broke that story about slavery in Libya? Or the first time we heard about the ongoing genocide and ethnic cleansing in China? Or.. or, that picture. The one of the boy laying in the sand. Don’t think happy thoughts now, I’m talking about the little migrant boy that drowned.

You remember right?

I haven’t been on social media for a little over a week. I haven’t exactly found peace and started meditating, I mean, I’m still stressed, my eye has been twitching for days and I’m dehydrating myself. Sometimes, it might honestly be on purpose.

I chose to step away from social media because I needed a break but we all need to re-evaluate the way we practice civic engagement on social media. There’s nothing wrong with dedicating our “platforms” to certain things but that’s not what we’re doing. We’re looking for bad news to consume us, we’re looking for evidence to assure us of our belief systems. We’re not trying to learn anything when we should be. Especially now that everyone thinks they know something about everything. We don’t even know what’s going on with all the issues we’re supporting, we don’t know how to help and we don’t want to do more than retweet hashtags and share posts on Instagram that only our like-minded mutuals will see.

Social media depoliticizes us. Pop culture depoliticizes us and honestly, just about everything we do is taking away our innate human abilities. The issues undoubtedly are bigger than us, but we can’t even see that far through our twitter feeds. We’re intentionally overwhelmed and forced to consume passively. We consume products passively and this year the product is dismay. We’ve over consumed it so we can’t even do anything productive and we just let it all slide.

We’re wasting our time online, basically.

Advertising incorporates social justice so we can feel like consuming their products is participating in activism, when the roots of those [social] causes is maintained by those corporations

PlasticPills, The Culture Industry – Adorno, Horkheimer, Neomarxism and Ideology

[that video is 18 minutes long but seriously, watch it. you’ll spend way longer scrolling through social media and not gaining anything]

It’s important to realize that no-one actually wants the kind of change that results in equity. Nobody wants to be just equal, everybody wants to be special, wants to be rich, pretty, no not just rich, the richest. It’s gross and yeah you knew this was coming but capitalism is the real villain but you all are okay with how it’s worked out for you so far so have fun with that.

Now, back to my sans-social media life…

The Things I Do Since I Can’t Afford Therapy

Seemed like a good place for an *abstract* and completely irrelevant photograph

Now that I don’t mindlessly scroll through twitter looking for something to break my heart, I’ve actually had to return to my hobbies and ambitions and all that stuff that parents try and shake out of you.

I’ve been writing, yes ha ha, remember when this blog was dry for like five months? She’s baaack!

I read now and I mean I read a lot back then, but I’m reading differently now, I’m reading about things like the Culture Industry, I’m read prominent Black Feminist literature, I’m reading banned books and not just for entertainment I’m reading to learn. Because the conversations that matter now (the ones you don’t bring to the dinner table) are things I don’t know enough about and like I said, I have to stay informed to survive.

I sing. Like embarrassingly loud and I get very scratchy and off-key when I get to the top of my voice but Disney songs will do that for you. It’s the bathroom concerts, you know.

My first Frappuccino and I swear I couldn’t have picked a worse day to order one

Oh yeah and this, I’ve been doing a lot of this lately. Cup after cup after cup.

This is starting to get long and ramble-y but here’s a little descriptive writing I did while I was on the phone with my parents and trying to distract myself so I wouldn’t get overly upset and not be able to do anything else that day. I’m hoping it will be the beginning of a salacious short story. I haven’t written one in a while so wish me luck!

Toronto, CA.

the skies were grey and flat, the wind licked my knuckles and left them raw – I had no way of sheltering them from the cold despite the thick coat hanging off my shoulder. I still couldn’t believe all I had gotten away with. When I sipped my coffee it burned my mouth but I couldn’t stop drinking. I needed to feel something. I can’t believe this place is so fucking cold. Has it always been this cold? I was surrounded by bodies swaddled in coats, cigarettes resting on dry lips with a thin layer of crust on them. I took in everything around me, including the cigarette smoke. It boxed me in and suffocated me – the same way my parents once did. I’ve always liked the smell of nicotine; it inspires me. It reminds me of seriousness, class, a compact and driven society of people working against each other. I lowered my face to my cup and breathed in the vanilla in my latte. The cold stung my nose and my teeth as I opened my mouth to sip. I hated the cold. I hated the cold in college when I would always find myself tensed up at the bus stop. I hated the cold even when I was strolling down my favourite streets. Someone just spat. I didn’t think they did that here. Where is the fucking bus?

xx

Naomi.

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