Wednesday, September 26, 2012


"In contemporary gamer culture, QQ has become the mainstream emoticon for crying eyes, though it is still often used in it's traditional sense." -Urban Dictionary
(There's actually a grammer, error in that excerpt. See if you can find it.)

            The church I went to before college was one that loved to do mission outreach on the "glocal" level. That’s global and local to those of you not "in the know." A large proportion of the youth regularly attended these mission trips or had their own projects in places less fortunate than our little corner of America where the recession barely blipped, and, upon return or via the Internet while still away, the most common statement made by my contemporaries was, “I have no right to complain because I have it so good compared to these guys.”
            That must feel nice, the ability to tell oneself that they live in a dream world with no real problems.
            Now, don’t misinterpret my extremely caustic statement. I’m an advocate of outreach, and I understand that, for the cost of a week of living where my folks do, a well providing clean water could be built for at least one village in a Third World country which would provide greater utility to more people than my having my own bedroom does. What I want to make clear to the very limited following QBA possesses is that problems over here don’t disappear because one knows of problems elsewhere.
            A tsunami half the world away does not make the deadline for those drafts any less concrete. A country where electricity is a luxury does not make your power going out any less annoying in the short run and unhealthy in the long run. Genocide does not mean your friend with an eating disorder is undeserving of the help you can provide.
            My personal favorite rebuttal to my worldview is this: you are so pessimistic; why not let people feel significant by worrying about problems greater than themselves? To proponents of that idea, I must ask how they can be so pessimistic. In essence, they destroy the idea of any individual being worth praise or recognition. The only greats in the world are giant problems that are chastised by many and fixed by few. I find it more respectable to work on what one can fix than what one can talk about.
            The idea of no complaints, if taken to its logical conclusion, ends up with the entire human population living in squalor. The first route taken is that every human makes the promise that they refuse to complain: when their home gets repossessed, when their workers stop showing up on time, when crime rates increase. Eventually, everyone’s lives have degraded because they couldn’t do anything to fix their conditions because one doesn’t fix something that isn’t broken, and to admit something is broken is to complain. Too many people are too greedy for this to happen, but it is the logical extreme of some groups' arguments. The other choice is to make all of mankind equal so no one has the right to complain because he or she has all the same amenities and opportunities as every other man or women… That’s Communism, which requires immoral redistribution of private property and destroys incentives to achieve, and this form would require the upper crust move to a mundane average which destroys any semblance of progress humanity could make.
            Teach the struggling nations about birth control and how to create mosquito nets, but don’t let such actions placate your need to fix your own problems as well. By all means, if you feel led by an adventurous spirit, sympathy for the human condition, or a religious calling, devote your life to the needs and situations of others, but don't forget your own needs. Paul, arguably the second most important figure in the New Testament, still had to devote his time to tent building to provide for his own needs while tending to others'.
            As always, please respond in the comments if you disagree or just want to tell me how cold and heartless I am for remembering my own problems while there are still other problems in the world.

-Jason Rossiter

Das Facebook. Dis Twitter.


  1. I understand your point but I think it's pretty much a given that when people say that sentence they are referring to complaints like "i have too much homework" or "there's too much traffic"...etc. No one certainly stops worrying about their problems and no one stops complaining. Cool blog.

    1. You have a valid point, and I know even the loudest proclaimers of others' problems recognize their own problems. I just want to inform as many people as possible about alternative states of mind to see issues through.

      Thanks for the compliment!

      -Jason Rossiter