The long haul

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Things in the zeitgeist are not the things with which you should be primarily concerned. There will always be another hot topic, another cause of public outrage, another new theory to consider. This is certainly not to say that the things in the popular discourse aren’t important. They certainly are. But, the zeitgeist is fickle and pet topics fleeting. If you have found the cause or topic you are passionate about, stick with it, while it is popular, and perhaps more importantly, even when no one else is talking about it. Be an independent thinker. Do not be bullied by the moods of the masses. The numbers take years to change whereas the twitter feed is constantly shifting. The problems and causes that were popular years ago, are often just as much a problem today as they were then. The problems today will continue to be a problem even when they are not trending on social media anymore. Pick a cause where you don’t care about the tide of popular opinion. If that is immigration, awesome. If it is healthcare reform, great. If it is a rare disease, fantastic. If it is accessible education, good. If it is addiction assistance, sweet. But if your list of causes mirrors that of the news feed or the top tweets reevaluate. Public campaigns come and go, but the real problems last much longer and the solutions require years and decades. We need reformers and advocates in each area who are dedicated to the long haul, to doing whatever it takes, with no regard to whether it is popular. This is how you win a war, change the culture, and make a difference.

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