Being ‘woke’ is more than just a young politically aware individual, it is more than just a hashtag or a trend. Being woke in this era means perceived awareness of issues concerning social justice.
Living in the 21st century categorises an abundance of advances in the technological domain which historically, is at its peak currently. With almost everything available at a single touch, we are indirectly cursed with tons and tons of information. While we have access to such a plethora of information, genuine information is tougher to attain among the seas of fake news. When this morphed news/information is fed to the people, it leads to the development of false opinions, the age group which is highly prone to the generation of false opinions is us, the youth.
The youth is often sought after as an easy target by undesirable groups to get their tasks accomplished. These groups are mostly political parties, terrorist organisations or radical groups. Opinions of the youth are often fragile and vulnerable thus, these groups take their advantage by luring them into traps.
Woke means being politically aware, awake, being opinionated and believing in an ideology or perception only after analysing both sides of the situation and then expressing one’s opinions. It can also be explained as reluctance towards adopting any radical belief until one is very sure of its outcomes and ensuring whether the outcome is in favour of the betterment of the society, environment or surroundings or not.
Such an aware youth should reach out to the people who share similar thoughts so that they can educate people and encourage a healthy discussion about the causes that need to be discussed at a bigger platform and raise awareness for the same and therefore in understanding every aspect of the situation and not just jump towards a conclusion without performing any effort.
But the on-ground reality is a bit different. There is a dominant stigma in society that indulging in such issues would drag one away from the leisures of youth. One of the major causes is shaming that one has to face when one starts ‘being woke.’
Usually, when a person starts taking interest in social causes the resistance often arises from their family initially and then expands to friends/acquaintances. Also, there is a constant fear of being judged. Another major reason is fake news.
Fake news shatters sensible opinion like a domino. Usually, to keep their pockets full, media houses take bags of money from political parties and act as their propaganda machine. Most media houses today focus on the blatant promotion of these leaders and propagating their ideologies instead of showing legitimate news; they are more interested in what’s going on in our neighbouring country. When this fake news is fed into the minds of naïve citizens. they lose the capacity to compare and contrast what is legitimate and what is unoriginal and hence give birth to a radical mindset.
According to society, majority of teenagers and young adults are presumed to be tech-obsessed, engulfed in the virtual world 24/7 and indifferent to their surroundings. There is also a problematic viewpoint that millennials cannot be sensible and due to this very viewpoint, young people are not taken seriously.
The phase we are living in right now makes it all the more important to be aware and well-read.
Accept. Accept changes. Accept that the leader you are following blindly might be wrong. Accept what is right for you and the people around you, be open to change and non – judgmental.
2) Do Your Research.
Before believing anything, make your own opinion. Check facts from multiple legitimate sources only then persist to trust anyone in particular.
3) Use Social Media Wisely
The consumption of information amongst youth is mostly performed through social media. Before coming to any conclusion regarding a sensitive topic, cross-check the legitimacy of the information and don’t spread fiction, until and unless you’re very sure of it. They might be a part of propaganda.
Rather, use social media for a good cause, to learn things and share opinions. Let your social media be a reflection of your thoughts. Follow useful pages, influential people and not-so-famous people. Consider it as space where you can let the audience know your side of the story and what you feel about the situation. Memes are good, but freedom of speech is cuter.
4) Be Opinionated
Don’t be a part of the crowd. Use your education to make a better person out of yourself. Know the root cause of a problem you’re interested in, analyze it only then move further towards a conclusion.
Here are a few essentials of being woke:
In the end, remember what Mother Teresa said, “Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time and always start with a person nearest you.” Observe things around you, just don’t sit and blame others for everything. We need a community of woke youth and not just a bunch of radical but empty minds.