Activism & ... the end of the world as we know it

IssueDecember 2016 - January 2017

What comes to mind is everybody complaining that Donald Trump is the president of the United States and everything is over because one man has a minimum of four years in that office.

I think it’s funny that everyone is freaking out that the world will end because of Donald Trump not believing that climate change is real.

It may be true that he will undo a lot of climate agreeements and so on, but he has only got four years. He won’t destroy the world in four years.

There’s definitely been a big change in the world with Brexit changing the way that British people will interact with the rest of Europe.

I’m joining the military which is one of the safest jobs you can have; you’re always going to have a roof over your head and food at the end of the day.

I guess if that didn’t go well, and I wanted to study somewhere else, leaving the EU would make that much harder.

And going on holiday will be more expensive because of the fall in the pound.

But it’s not the end of the world.

- Man, Edinburgh

I’m hoping that that ‘the end of the world as we know it’ is actually a possibility because the world as we know it is really basically making it impossible for human beings to exist into the future. And also, now, we’re committing suicide as a race but the sort of lives we lead are not really the fulfilment of the possibility of who we are.

Then there’s just the sort of chaos that is around; everybody being very shaken up and not knowing quite what is going to happen. It seems to be affecting me on a personal level too.

I was just talking to a friend about feeling a few weeks ago, feeling quite confident in myself. She said: ‘What would you say about how you feel true to yourself?’ I said: ‘A few weeks ago, I would have been able to say “I felt fairly authentic”, but at the moment that seems to be.... I’m not so sure I know how to do that any more.’

- Woman, Hebden Bridge

‘The end of the world as we know it’! (Laughs) Not a big issue, then! More things are happening now than 20-odd years ago when I first started to become politically aware. I wish I was more involved but circumstances don’t permit.

I’ve had to take direct action in terms of personal things, over welfare benefit issues, and I’m quite interested in the ongoing problem of people being denied benefits because I think inequality is the big one all over the world, and inequality causes violence.

Hopefully ‘the end of the world as we know it’ is a good thing, it’s anti-establishment in a way. I know that people say [UKIP leader Nigel] Farage pretends to be anti-establishment but actually he is establishment. That seems debatable to me.

It’s got to be good, because things have not been good for a lot of people for a long time.

‘The end of the world as we know it’ sounds like a dramatic step – or will it happen gradually?

What I notice increasingly is the massive differences – because I travel quite a bit as a volunteer driver. I was in Chester a few days ago, in an expensive carpark I wouldn’t normally go to, completely surrounded by ‘yummy mummies’ in their BMWs. Was it like this 30 years ago? I was surrounded by people I had nothing in common with.

I get on great with my neighbours but they have no interest in anything outside their ordinary lives. At Peace News Summer Camp four years ago, we talked about how do we bring things up with other people. I don’t! I only bring things up with people with like mind.

- Man, Machynlleth

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