the systems in place and the people in power are corrupt and consistently put profit over people. it's been that way for centuries. what can I do?

by bloodonthecleaver
there is an answer! the good news is that it starts with you, yes you, and the choices and relationships you make. the bad news is that it takes sacrifice on your part. but if you dream of a better world, those sacrifices might damn well be worth it.
we live in a society that is increasingly divisive of the common people — as in, the vast majority of us, in every country on every continent. greedy people are good at taking power trips at the expense of the rest of us; they are equally good at turning us on each other as they cackle maniacally behind the curtain (or that’s how I imagine it, anyway).
but we can fight that together by taking certain steps to divest from the Powers That Be. indeed, you can allott some time towards outrage and disgust, but the real effects come through when we put that outrage into practice.
i don’t claim to have all the answers, but there are a few ideas that i think might benefit people on both an individual and (ideally) a universal scale:
(1) disengage from popular entertainment industries that have proven themselves time and again to be corrupt and damaging. don’t pay to see blockbuster films! don’t keep up with celebrities on snapchat! hell, delete your twitter account!
INSTEAD — support your local artists and musicians! rent books from the town library! meet up with your trusted friends and brainstorm over a beer about making the world a better place!
(2) be conscious when you buy. whether you’re an environmentalist or not, you’re surely aware of the vast amounts of waste humans have created and continue to create. you’re also surely aware of the corporate horrors that control the food industry (and most other industries as well). while you’re at it, divesting from amazon is a good idea, too.
INSTEAD — buy secondhand! get thrifty! i rarely buy new clothing these days but i still manage to out-dress most of my peers and colleagues. as for food, it may be the hipster thing to do, but buy local and organic when you can. it’s good for the environment, and you’re less likely to be taking part in worker exploitation when you know that your tomatoes came straight from Farmer Joe and not a farm 500 miles away. (bonus points for buying food that is GMO-free; the effects of GMOs on human health are questionable, but it’s well-known that Monsanto is pretty evil.)
(3) develop a sense of community with the people around you! as fun as it can be screaming into your personal corner of the Internet, the value of everyday, face-to-face conversation should not be overlooked. don’t let your bitterness towards the evils of this world blind you to the relative innocence of those around you.
INSTEAD — assume the best of the people you meet, even if they disagree with you! especially if they disagree with you! instead of a shouting match, have a conversation over coffee. find out where people are coming from. don’t view arguments as things that you win or lose. view them as a chance to deconstruct the issue and come to a deeper understanding of the problem at hand. you will probably still disagree, at least in your first few conversations; but if you can both agree on actively listening and responding to each other, your argument won’t be a waste of time. it will be valuable to everyone involved. you may even make friends with people you never would have imagined befriending.
of course this list is not at all exhaustive, and if you have any other ideas, i’d love to hear them. but doing these things (even if i don’t stick to them 100% of the time) makes me feel at least a little bit more independent from corruption.
TL;DR: divest from the powerful and corrupt; invest in community and goodwill!

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