*Note: I wrote this a really long time ago. I'm just too tired to give ya anything new*
“It’s only words, and words are all I have to take your heart away.”—Robin Gibb
Words, communications—these are the most powerful weapons, the most effective persuaders, and the easiest tools in the world to abuse. Words can exalt, and words can debase. Words can both end wars and start them. Words can bring forth love, and they can also drive it away just as quickly. The mastery of words is something I strive toward constantly, and it is a personal battle well worth waging. With the right words, one could conceivably save the world—or destroy it. This, then, is the question: which shall I do? Shall I fashion myself as the world’s savior, or its destroyer? Shall I let love or bitterness guide me, as either force would motivate me toward equal levels of greatness? Will mine be a legacy of rage or benevolence?
Since early childhood, I developed a keen interest in the written word. Its many quirks and eccentricities thrilled me, and I resolved to learn them well. I devoured reading material with a voracious spirit that stunned my elders and garnered disdain from my less-inclined peers, and before long I knew that my calling lay not merely in reading, but writing as well. I was no speaker—true, I loved to talk, but I lacked the interpersonal skills to be anything more than unsettling when speaking to a crowd. People could see through me, and I found that disconcerting, so naturally my mannerisms would convey the unease I felt to the audience. Worse, those who didn’t find me disturbing simply found me humorous, which was yet another step in the wrong direction; my desired image was shot. So it was that my reputation of being a “creeper” was born, and since nobody would ever want to hear what a “creeper” had to say, I realized that it would be through my first love of print that my ideas would be acknowledged, and indeed, respected.
Those who would debate the undeniable power of words should look no further than the history books. They should look at the political juggernauts of the 1940s, from FDR to Winston Churchill to even the odious Adolf Hitler. What was key in their rise to power? Words. Communications. If Hitler were a sheepish, stammering fool with a soft, quavering voice, it would not have mattered what his ideas were, good or bad; nobody would have listened to him. Hitler knew what to say and how to say it, and before long, he was a force to be reckoned with. Although Hitler was a genocidal fiend, and I would never wish to be anything like him, he does drive home the point that charisma, both in literature and in life, is vital when it comes to getting what one wants in life. I lack charisma in my interpersonal communications, but give me a pen and paper—THEN you’ll see what I can really do. I can and will bend the inner workings of the world to meet my expectations, and all it will take is a long road of toil and a lot of carefully-chosen words.
It is ironic, really; I never wanted to be a leader. I lack the patience for leadership, and I have never before been an assertive individual. But a lot of things have happened in the past year to sway my judgement a bit. I have come to realize that people are indeed a great deal like sheep, and they are all-too-easily led. Once again, Hitler proves that with just the right verbal push, people can be persuaded to go along with anything, no matter how preposterous the idea or action may actually be. As far as I’m concerned, if people are willing to be led by idiots, I might as well become one of those idiots (figuratively speaking, of course). By this, I don’t mean I wish to become a politician—I do have some scruples. Rather, I’d like to try my hand at reshaping the way people go about living their lives. Media has done its fair share to ruin the way society functions, and as such, I feel that media may be just the thing to remedy society as well. It will not be easy to save society, however, as many do not wish to be saved. Deliberate ignorance runs rampant in our society, a by-product of our blind desire to avoid accountability, and like Stephen in the Bible, I run the risk of being stoned to death by the unwashed and uneducated masses who stop up their ears to avoid hearing the truth. This brings me to my ultimate question: is it worth it?
I ask myself every day as I contemplate my future. Is trying to save the world from its own stupidity really worth it, or am I wasting my breath by screaming at a wall? Can one man truly make a difference? Am I the man to do it? Why me? And then, finally, why not? Why can’t I do my part to try and fix the filthy mess our world has become? Why not make an effort to raise public awareness and get people to think? I can be Churchill. I can be Socrates. I can be whoever I want to be and more. I can be the one to make things good again. But that’s where my bravado ends. Even though I know what needs to be done, and that I have the ability to do it, I’m still left with the bitterness of life. I’m still left asking, “So what?” So what if I can change the world? Why do I need to be the good guy all the time? Why don’t I just use my skills, take what’s rightfully mine, and change the rules completely to suit me? Who cares about everyone else? They’re just going to turn on you anyway. “Oh, please, give that knife an extra twist; I think you may have missed that last vertebra.”
Thinking like that is the reason why people are so messed up. As humans, all we ever do is take advantage of each other, and that’s just not going to fly anymore. We should be beyond that by now, not from an “evolutionary” standpoint but from a societal one. We have all the resources we could possibly need to survive, and yet we still live in a world with crime, poverty and starvation. It’s going to have to stop if we’re going to make it much further in existence. As tempting as it may be to just throw all hope out the window and become a destroyer, it all comes back to Spider-Man: with great power comes great responsibility. Power I have, in the form of my writing skills. I am every bit as adept in the use of the English language as a skilled blacksmith is at forging iron, or a renowned chef in blending ingredients to make a divine culinary delicacy, and it is my responsibility to use that power to benefit mankind. Wisdom, which at first seems a curse in the face of ignorance, is truly a gift, one which must be used to illuminate the dark recesses of the world we live in, not a hindrance to be cast aside or ignored. I have made my choice, and that choice is to conquer media and change the world for the better. What will you do?