Well here we are, at the end of a year and in a few hours we will be beginning a new one. Usually considered a time on renewal, of fresh starts making New Year resolutions is part of the ritual, as much a part of it as fireworks and parties that signify out with the old and in with the new. Here’s a definition of resolution:
1A firm decision to do or not to do something:
‘she kept her resolution not to see Anne any more’
‘a New Year’s resolution’
1.1 A formal expression of opinion or intention agreed on by a legislative body or other formal meeting, typically after taking a vote:
‘the conference passed two resolutions’
2[mass noun] The quality of being determined or resolute:
‘he handled the last British actions of the war with resolution’
3[mass noun] The action of solving a problem or contentious matter:
‘the peaceful resolution of all disputes’
[count noun] ‘a successful resolution to the problem’ (source)
Look at point 3 again: The action of solving a problem or contentious matter:
‘the peaceful resolution of all disputes’
I hope that’s the case, that we can reconnect with loved ones and look to the future with renewed hope and vigour as individuals and as Americans.
There are however factors at work that may make “the peaceful resolution of all disputes” pretty difficult, a tall order to sick to regardless of how badly some of us want to. Changing just one letter is the word resolution and you get a whole new word: Revolution.
Revolution is resolution on methamphetamine, a settling of a dispute by force rather than by negotiation.
1A forcible overthrow of a government or social order, in favour of a new system:
‘the country has had a socialist revolution’
1.1 (in Marxism) the class struggle which is expected to lead to political change and the triumph of communism:
‘when I grew up it was the Marxism that was very strong, it was like the revolution was coming next week’
1.2 A dramatic and wide-reaching change in conditions, attitudes, or operation:
‘marketing underwent a revolution’ (source)
We are on the cusp of major changes, and these changes are coming regardless of if we want them to or not. The US presidential election has caused everything from riots to kids claiming they are too traumatized to study and although the subject matter may have been different if Clinton had won the election, major changes would still have been on the horizon.
The migrant crisis, for that’s what it is, is putting security at risk across Europe, pushing health systems to crisis point and altering the cultural fabric of society in numerous countries.
Inane laws that seem to favour migrants are forcing people towards taking action themselves regardless of what the law dictates. When we see trucks being used as weapons, mass murder by gunmen at concerts, airports and in shopping malls we have to ask the question
‘how much more before something cracks and the people take things into their own hands?’
Politicians, such as Barack Obama seem hellbent on causing international rifts and across the pond, here in the UK the Brexit Referendum, which should have been final because the people had spoken is being challenged.
All of these things, and many others are coming together and edging us towards a tipping point which if reached will change our way of life forever.
Revolutions are nothing new, they have been happening since humans organised themselves into cohesive groups, since they started electing leaders – and then finding that they didn’t like the way things were going. When repeated attempts at resolution fail revolution often follows.
So what triggers a revolution? As usual looking back at other revolutions can give us a few insights:
- The economy tanks
- Dissatisfaction with the government
- Civil unease/unrest
- Persecution of a given segment of society
- Curtailment of civil liberties
- Martial law
There will always be political divides, that’s why we actually have elections. Letting the people decide is the single most important thing that separates a democracy from a dictatorship. Usually the election decides the issue and that’s that. People grumble and moan and condemn the winner, those who supported the winner celebrate, it’s the way it is, we are human, we like our team to win. This election though has been different – very, very different.
Only time will tell which path the United States will take as a country. Americans are at a fork in the road. Will the differences that have divided the country be resolved or will history books be recording the Second American Revolution?
Will Europe cope with the number of migrants flooding across borders? How many more terrorist attacks need to happen before the people rise up and say no more?
These issues have to be resolved, because without resolution, there will be revolution.
“But when you talk about destruction, don’t you know that you can count me out”