Thought of the Day: To be or not to be (political)

Every time I scroll through Hinge I find it very interesting that ‘not political’ is an option people can choose when it comes to describing their political stance/affiliation to potential matches. In all honestly, for me it’s usually a turn-off because how could you be completely ‘not political’?

In theory, I could understand the attraction of this option. It’s likely a direct product of an apathy a lot of younger generations have toward modern-day politics due to feelings of helplessness and frustration. We vote, we protest, we tweet and yet it seems we’re rarely able to shift the needle on the topics that matter to us most. But when you think about it, literally everything from the price of milk, the state of education, our pensions and healthcare is dictated ultimately by politics. Since you can’t opt-out of that fact, it’s worth staying clued up and engaging where possible with the political system at hand (even if it’s just only local politics.) In other words – just because you can be apathetic, doesn’t mean you should.

I often wonder if perhaps this trend of being ‘non-political’ is more of a Western phenomenon or a symbol of privilege. Our ability to zone in and out of the news accordingly without it impeding too much on our day-to-day is something many people across the world cannot afford to do, especially for members of marginalised communities who are always having their rights chipped away at.

Podcasts are a great way to stay informed, especially on the go. Some of my usual go-to’s are below:

  • Times news briefing (for short 3-minute daily summaries (morning and evening) of a day’s key events)

*Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

The World as We Know It

I told myself I wasn’t going to write a post about COVID-19 but I think that would be a disservice to the extent of the situation if I didn’t. With the exception of this post, I will try to post minimally about the topic simply because I’m sure everyone is a bit overwhelmed with information – possibly to the point of fatigue. As I sit working from home each day; I switch on the news on the radio and hear about COVID-19 for several hours straight, so I for one can testify to this.

It’s a weird phenomenon we are currently experiencing where it feels like we are receiving too much information, yet at the same time, we know nothing at all. From what I’ve seen it’s clear this ‘being in the dark’ feeling extends all the way to political leaders who are primarily acting reactively to the situation with the little information they have. We are still learning about the virus and each day it seems something new is revealed.

Deaths in Britain have reached over 28,000 which is just astonishing to even think about. My heart goes out to families having to currently grieve during this ordeal. Many report their loss is magnified by the fact they didn’t get to stay with their loved one during their last moments because of the safety measures currently in place. Similarly, many who may have wanted to attend the funerals for those now passed could not due to number restrictions on who could attend.

We have witnessed the pandemic bring out the best and worst in people as the nation has experienced feelings of fear, panic and sympathy all at once. Initially, people started to panic buy in droves with items such as hand sanitiser, toilet roll and dried/tinned goods proving most popular. It was all well and good for individuals who managed to get what they needed but their selfish buying, unfortunately, was disproportionately affecting the elderly and NHS workers who would go shopping for groceries – only to find most of the items they need are gone. This led to several heartbreaking scenes being shared on social media like the one below:

Luckily, this behaviour has died down in the UK now due to the excellent response from supermarkets who decided to implement measures such as rationing in order to ensure as many people as possible could purchase what they need.

On the other hand, we’ve also seen undying acts of generosity and kindness. Big brands are donating goods, offering NHS worker discounts and manufacturing high demand items like PPE and ventilators. And to balance that we also see individuals and charities working to feed those that may have been forgotten through all of this such as those in homeless shelters and elderly individuals living alone. Additionally, I’ve seen people cook homemade meals for keyworkers and school kids, as well as landlords, offer accommodation rent-free to NHS workers. Lots of heartwarming stuff really!


I remember reading on my Instagram this weekend a post that said ‘The World as we know it has changed.’ In other words, there is no ‘normal’ anymore. Returning back to business is not a choice because the definition of ‘normal’ has changed from here on. But the post went on to say we should embrace this change – because the way we were functioning before was flawed and in need of adjustment. I think this perspective is a useful one to adopt – it allows us to look forward and be filled with hope, as we should.

From the way we communicate, spend our leisure time to the way we work  – this pandemic has opened a new way of doing things that may become a new normal. I’ve seen everything from IG streamed concerts, pub quizzes and weddings over Zoom to virtual conferences and church services.  I look forward to seeing how this manifests but I personally will be taking a well needed from Zoom calls and webinars of all forms – post lockdown!

There’s hope on the horizon with several talks of vaccines being tested and countries like Italy and China slowly relaxing lockdown regulations as deaths decrease. The UK itself is likely to follow suit in a few months now that we have experienced the peak of the curve; meaning deaths from here on should steadily decrease. That is of course as long as people KEEP THEIR BUTTS AT HOME!

Lastly, to those reading – stay strong and hang in there!


Weekly News Roundup

For those of you that don’t watch the news, or weirdly, watch it on mute- I’m here to save you. Here’s my weekly news roundup.

The media have been going wild since Donald Trump announced he would enforce a ‘temporary measure’ where all Muslims would be banned from entering the country. He said the measure would be needed until government officials figure out, I quote, ‘what the hell is going on.’ I’ve seen the footage of him saying this quite a few times and I think what scared me most was that there was no heckling or booing; anything that sounded like a sign of disagreement.

I’m sure these comments were fuelled by the recent shooting that took place where a Muslim couple shot people in a centre for people with developmental disabilities. However, Donald Trump is forgetting that most of the school shootings (including the Batman cinema shootings) were committed by white disillusioned Americans. The problem is not that of Islam or race for that matter, and making it appear as if so steers public debate away from the true issues at heart. The problem is guns- that is gun laws and the second amendment; which I believe is out of date and is in need of reform. I was talking to my flatmate who was in agreement and she said she doesn’t know how many shootings are going to have to take place for the government to realise this. This is sad, but true.

Britain voted to send airstrikes to Syria. Something, I (and millions of others) did not agree with it. However, it was pretty much a damned if you, damned if you don’t situation. Although much of the Labour Party voted against it, just under 160 MPs I believe, 66 voted in favour. The bombs are said to be over £100,000 each- which is simply, just ridiculous. I think it’s around 6,000 people that sleep homeless in London each year, a figure that is much higher if we include the rest of Britain and the government choose to spend all this money (they supposedly don’t have) on defence and the military. Priorities need to be re-evaluated if you ask me.

Other events

The global climate summit finally came to an end, after being extended. It’s been heralded as historic, as it’s the first time, the majority of the world’s countries- developed and developing- have reached a consensus on how to tackle the issue. Floods have been taking place in the North of England and the government has set aside £50 million for aid. Saudi Arabia has allowed women to vote in regional elections- there was an 80% turnout, compared to the 44% turnout for men. Tim Peak, a British astronaut has shot off into space! Lastly, Louisa Johnson has become the UK’s youngest winner of the X factor, at the tender age of 17. How Charming.


Guess who’s back?

I’m back once again, hoping to bring life to this somewhat neglected blog of mine. I will finish my film reviews- don’t think I’ve forgotten about that, but for the meantime, I wanna talk about some stuff being broadcast on the news.

That depressing part of TV we all try to avoid.

Firstly, there was the story about the teacher who was arrested for sleeping with a pupil. They were going to run away to France together but got caught before they escaped, I believe. The teacher was married, so I can’t imagine how upset and embarrassed his wife must be about all this. She wants a divorce (shockingly enough.) The girl and the teacher had been having sex in his car, hotel rooms and even in his house during the course of their time together.

The girl still believes she’s in love with this guy, she even wrote a 5-page letter to the guy’s family saying how she loved him and will wait for him while he’s in jail. The guy has his family’s full support- they believe he did nothing wrong. On the other hand, as a teacher, it was the guy’s responsibility not to encourage the girl’s infatuation (I believe the judge said this). This may I ass, is a very basic part of the job.

To conclude…let’s just say that teacher won’t be teaching again for a very looooong time to come.

Secondly, there’s this story about Ian Brady wanting to die. To the best of my knowledge, all I know is that Ian Brady is a serial killer who, with his accomplice Myra Hindley, tortured and killed a bunch of innocent little children. He has been on hunger strike for a long time and now wants to be given the right to die.

Serial Killers are very interesting to me. I always wonder what makes them tick- how someone goes under the transformation of being a normal law-abiding citizen, to someone who, well…kills people. From what I know, many have/had troublesome childhoods- so that’s probably a number one cause.

For now, I know where I stand on the Brady story. Killing him is the easy way out, he needs to slowly rot and suffer in jail. Why should be given the right to die? Where his victims given that option? I don’t think so. Plus, he still hasn’t revealed the location of some of the victim’s bodies, which he SHOULD, so the parents can bury their children and have peace of mind.

I’m sorry but his actions cannot be justified. People like him sicken me, they have absolutely no regard for human life. Plus, justice cannot be served or take its course if we start listening to and granting the demands of killers.

Lastly, Nelson Mandela remains in critical condition for the third week in a row. If he does die (let’s be realistic here-he’s 94 years old), I believe he lived a great life and will always remain in history as a change maker. Us, as a world was blessed to have him and may he rest in peace.

Since he’s NOT dead- let’s just pray he makes a safe recovery and stays with us for many years to come.

On a positive note… I have lots of pictures I should be posting soon. Hopefully, I’ll blog again this week, If not it’s because I’m busying getting everything in order for my prom on Friday!

‘Ello, ello, ello!

So it’s the week after Holy week…whatever that’s called. I haven’t been on here for a while, but it’s nice to be back. Check out the ‘Squares Eyes‘ section of my blog, where I, a self-confessed TV fanatic, will be posting reviews and recommendations of TV shows ( and maybe the occasional film) to watch.

It’s the Easter Holidays and I’m meant to be revising…or trying to anyway. Holidays are usually those times where I have so much time on my hands I either do nothing at all, or a lot of things. Honestly, I can’t wait till exams are over. I can literally imagine the moment where I can walk out of school with my grades and burn my uniform- tie, skirt and all. Until then…I need to FOCUS.

And… to sum up the news for the week for those who live in a hole, or are just to busy living life:

Roger Ebert (Famous Journalist and Film critic) has died of cancer- R.I.P to him

North Korea seems to be stirring a global panic and threatening America with their nukes- I see the possible start of Cold War 2 (?).

The Philpotts have been sentenced and jailed for manslaughter. All six of their children were killed last year in a fire that they, the parents, (apparently) started. Honestly, the amount of cruelty in this world never seizes to amaze me.

On a positive note I’ve been enjoying the amazing Japanese films that have been coming on Film 4 as part of Studio Ghibli season. I’m not into all the sorcery…but I enjoyed the films Arrietty, Ponyo and Whisper of the Heart, which came on today.

Nearly finished The Kite Runner by Khalid Hosseini. One word – FANTASTIC. A must add to anyone’s bucket list of books to read, (if you have one that is).