Who Am I?

Recently, I tried to find myself within all the election clutter.  Where do I belong, I wondered.  I tuned into CNN to surf the category that best describes me. Neither a Democrat nor a Republican, I suppose I am an independent thinker. Female? Yes. Phew. That was easy. Neither a liberal nor a conservative. Not a socialist or right winger.  Certainly not a revolutionary. Is there a category for thoughtful optimist?  No? Well, there should be. In this era of labels, there seems to be a label for everything and everyone. There’s older and younger women. Surely I can fit in there.  But the truth is I am older in years, but younger in ideas. Sorry. No room for distinctions.  Not an evangelical or a  blue collar male. Do I want more government or less? I think I’d like just enough, but not too much. The clever pollsters are segmenting our world. At the same time, Google and Amazon keep track of our every purchase and text.  What we do, what we say, where we go, who we call… these are all now segmented into buckets based on what and how we consume. Those buckets are then used to slice and dice us. What is disturbing in this land of ideals and ideas is that these labels become the dominant organizing theme in our society, stifling the freedom of thought we so cherish. That is why the arts matter. There’s something about the arts that resists labeling, that defies lumping us together. The arts champion individuality. They extol differences rather than sameness. They keep alive creativity… that elusive quality that propels imagination into innovation. It is the spark that differentiates the original from the generic. Let’s try to keep that alive at our own peril.  It’s why the arts matter.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,