Marjorie Roque, Youth Speak News

Count your blessings, not your complaints

By  Marjorie Roque, Youth Speak News
  • January 4, 2012

As cliché as it may sound, the famous phrase “Ignorance is bliss” can be highly relevant to modern society. Many of us fail to recognize the surplus of blessings we have been given and focus more on what we lack.

If you have a Twitter account, the essence of our ignorance can be seen in the tweets of FirstWorldPains. The account satires the pains of developed countries by tweeting various complaints that many find relatable. Tweets like “It’s nice outside, but my Internet doesn’t reach far enough to the backyard for me to watch Netflix on my laptop” and “The chips I’m eating are too wide for my mouth” grace the newsfeed every other hour.

While I find these statements do prove to be crafty and appealing to the 586,097 Twitter users following this account, it begs the question: is our generation detached?

The clever pokes at our luxurious discontent are indeed humourous. However, could it be telling of the ignorant ideology of the greater Internet population? Quite frankly, if people are finding such blogging to be overly entertaining, I do infer a sense of pretentious attitudes. We are to count our blessings for a reason — not everyone is as lucky as we are.

It is easy to assume that the great reply to FirstWorldPains may just be due to the simple fact that it’s funny. But it is by overlooking the fact that billions of people are actually starving in the world that we continue to poke fun at our own discontent.

This can be deemed as morally wrong. It should never be entertaining to whine about our own “deluxe” discomfort. But this culture has seemed to evolve from the ’net. The idea of complaining about ridiculous things has become somewhat of a fashion.

This way of blogging should cause worry. We cannot ignore that we do live in a somewhat detached world.

Our lives are faced with petty issues. In contrast to the dilemmas of the greater world, the irony of whining about cold butter not spreading easily should elicit a different response than simply laughter. The widening gap between rich and poor should be a signal for change, rather than wit.

It is important to remember that we have won the lottery of life. We are able to live in a world where needs and wants can both be attained. Even if there is no more milk left for the cereal, there is still a grocery store down the street with a fresh jug of milk waiting for you.

No one can stop our petty discomforts, though. Many will still frown at the fact their iPhone loads too slowly or their TV isn’t “high def” enough. This is the world we live in.

But we can go with the flow and laugh along or we can realize how silly we are being.

In the end, it is important to remember that we have the ability to change. We should all take a minute and thank God for our blessings.

(Roque, 17, is a Grade 12 student at Archbishop Carney Regional Secondary School in Coquitlam, B.C. Read her full profile at youthspeaknews.org.)

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