The fight for equality, it seems, tends to move slower as time goes on.
Whether it’s due to growing apathy or institutionalized opposition, the greatest causes slowly but surely lose steam, and attention turns to less worthy topics.
All too often, we Millennials are brushed off as the generation with the smallest attention span and most apathy. We’re typecast as the kids who only care about how many Instagram likes we get or how many people swipe right for our Tinder profiles.
Really though, we are so much more than that.
Just look at the passionate students on our own campus and on college campuses throughout the country fighting for visibility and equality.
These students are taking the very social media people use as an example to belittle us and instead have, once again, used it as a platform to send a message. Hashtags like “#ChangeForPlattsburgh,” “#LetsGetUncomfortable” and even “ConcernedStudent1950” show this common thread.
The amount of passion shown for these causes shows that yes, we are a generation dependent on social media, but because of this, we can also be the generation to keep the momentum going.
As we are all learning, the best and most effective way to spread change is through empathy.
One has to consider the perspectives of others to truly understand where they are coming from.
Opinions editor Griffin Kelly tried his hand at this idea in this week’s column “The trials and tribulations of a modern woman,” where he attempts to understand what it is like to live as a heteronormative female. While his focus was clearly on one kind of perspective, the conclusions he was able to draw shows just how effective walking in someone else’s shoes can be.
“If someone calls you girly for drinking a Mike’s Hard, if someone calls you feminine for shaving your legs, if someone calls you a pussy for wearing makeup, just tell them, ‘I’m as tough as a woman.’”
We have seen that an incredibly important part of the human experience is getting uncomfortable and understanding standpoints other than our own.