5 Pointless Social Media Campaigns

Social media, without a doubt, can incite real and powerful change. From starting revolutionary democratic movements around the world to educating people about real issues, the past few years have been testaments to the power of websites like Twitter and Facebook. However, the number of causes invading our news feeds is becoming exhausting, as people share, like, and comment on content that makes them feel as if their clicks are actually contributing to some greater change. This trend has given rise to the term “slacktivism,” which refers to the lazy, noncommittal attempts at social activism. Here are a few recent trends to not waste your time with:

“If this picture gets 1 million likes/shares/comments, this baby can receive a necessary life-saving surgery!” 
If you’re an active participant on Facebook, it’s nearly impossible to escape seeing one of these posts. Spoiler alert: None of these campaigns work. Unless the post provides a link to a reputable charity where you can donate money to support the cause, your sympathy “like” is unfortunately not going to have any affect on any child’s life. If you feel passionate about a cause, the way to help would be to donate to the charity yourself. But, before you donate your hard-earned cash, please take the extra couple minutes to verify the charity for its validity and efficiency on websites like Charity Navigator. This allows you to see how much of your money actually ends up helping the individuals in need instead of going straight to administrative costs.

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Picture source: postgradproblems.com

Discussion of Khaled Hosseini’s “The Kite Runner”

The theory of perfection is intriguing for many reasons, but primarily because of its unattainability. The human drive for self-improvement and betterment of society is never ending, as explored through the millennia by innumerable works of art, literature, and philosophy. The Kite Runner, a masterpiece of a novel written by Khaled Hosseini, explores this unquenchable thirst for redemption and contentedness. It is testament to this novel’s uniqueness and gravity, that it has altered my entire world perspective and how I view myself.

An interesting feature of this novel is its lack of clearly defined antagonists. There are no villains, and thus, no scapegoat to point fingers at. Instead, it is the main character, Amir, and his life choices and decisions that act as the primary instigators of much of the calamity that takes place in the novel. The Kite Runner taught me that, in the end, despite all of the extenuating circumstances, it is truly our choices that define us, and what we ultimately have to live with on our conscience. As Amir copes with the buried demons of his past and attempts to reconcile his past choices with his current morality, The Kite Runner strengthened my resolve to truly make each of my decision reflect my values and ethics as an individual. In today’s fast paced, competition driven world, we are encouraged on all fronts to cut corners and sacrifice our sense of self and personal morality for the sake of getting ahead in the pursuit of success. Hosseini’s novel reminded me of the importance of integrity, which I’ve committed to make the keystone of each of my life choices, from the life altering, to the trivial.

The Kite Runner’s main setting is Kabul, Afghanistan, and even after the main characters move to San Francisco, the distinctly Afghan culture colors the entirety of the book. A region of the world often demonized by today’s media and current climate, this book was a refreshing take on the culture of a part of the world that feels especially distant. The Kite Runner put an unflinchingly, unapologetically human face on a people often reduced to a religious epithet. Acknowledging the good, the bad, and the ugly of the political and cultural climate, with a genuine mix of nostalgia, disgust, ill content, and reverence of one’s hometown and heritage, Hosseini reinforced the universality of human compassion, grief, joy, and love. The novel reaffirmed that no matter the country, language, class, or religion, each person strives to seek self-improvement, and must confront their own personal struggles, coping in whatever way they know how.

As The Kite Runner established, as humans, we constantly strive for self-betterment. This dichotomy between the theory of perfection and its practice, and the constant pursuit of this unattainable end—it’s an idea that I find especially intriguing. Similarly, I believe the subjective nature of the definition of perfection to provide valuable insight on the structures and foundations of today’s current society. A culture’s prioritization of the traits they believe to advance the movement to perfection—whether it be equality, order, freedom, or happiness, is a glance into distinct ideologies of unique people, and is a concept beautifully and artfully captured in Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner.