Incidentally… on Brexit (again), and changing the channel.

People online are losing their marbles because of the shocking revelation (to them) that Brexit might not happen.
Again. British Parliament…does not…have to act…in accordance…with any referendum voting in England, such as Brexit.
They’ve never had to. Yes, really. Wikipedia could have told you that. I told you that in a previous post, not that I’m Edward R Murrow or anything.
“So, like, if that’s true, then why was everyone freaking out?..”
Because ignorance and fear mongering, when taken in equal doses, can move mountains.
Here’s a real doozy for you to keep in your back pocket for a rainy day…
The President of the US has…no…legislative…power. He or she can suggest and proclaim things all he or she wants but Congress calls the shots, makes the shots, approves the shots and even determines what shots get taken and when. As a related side-note, there are a lot of people in this world that need to watch “Mr. Smith Goes To Washington”. It should be curriculum in all public schools in the US.
Follow Obama’s presidency. I don’t mean follow him on Twitter ‘liking’ things his PR people post pretending to be him or sharing cool pictures of him with fun celebrities, I mean really look over his 8 year presidency, you know, the job he was actually elected for. The total tonnage of things he proposed that got rejected or flat out ignored (ignorantly, in my opinion) could stop a team of wild horses in its tracks.
“, like, why don’t we have more [insert your political party of preference] in Congress??…”
I don’t know, you’d have to ask the staggering sixty — six-zero — percent of Americans that don’t bother turning up to vote during the mid-term elections for their Representatives or Senators or in most cases bother even learning their names.
“Then why does the media obsess over the Presidential election?”
Now, that is a perfectly good question… The answer is: they do so for the same reason everyone obsessively takes pictures (and shares pictures) of a toddler who doesn’t even know he’s the son of a completely powerless Prince of England, it sells like hotcakes and makes shitloads of money in advertising and media sales.
Read. We all do it when we’re little, we read everything put in front of us without bias. We learn what the Very Hungry Caterpillar does, what the letter ‘P’ stands for, which animal roars and which one barks, what stuff is soft and which is prickly. But then when we’re adults we stop reading and just look for things that agree with how we already think. A child never said, “well I think the Very Hungry Caterpillar is just extremely greedy and proof that if you give people things for free, they take advantage of the system and become leeches sucking the government out of every penny its worth.” The child is just happy knowing that the caterpillar one day turns into a butterfly. Sorry for the spoiler.
Question things. The internet is there, practically free. Inform yourself, and not just with sources that are in line with your own political views.
Listen. Truly listen to what the people on all the other sides are saying (well, if you’re in the US, what the only other side are saying). I promise you, they love their country as much as you do. You will have that, at least, in common. You do not have to agree on how that love is expressed. And that is good.
All of this to simply say, you can react to the things that happen the way you want to react, and not how the media is coaxing you to react if you learn some basic facts about what’s going on in a given story. But you have to read. Read the news like the Very Hungry Caterpillar, directly and for nothing more than what it’s worth. And ignore all those people giving you opinion packaged as “news”. They want to tell you why they think the caterpillar’s eating, what it’s motivations are, and always — always — miss the point of the story because they don’t care whether you know the point, they just want you to not change the channel.
Change the channel.