I was in the future — 2030 to be exact. The room smelled like sunflowers and cinnamon toast. Through the window, just outside, the yard filled with flowers like a work of Monet. Further away were buildings and skyscrapers that shot through the clouds. I imagined the future to be a lot more polluted, but the air here felt like kisses from the trees. The exchanged banters of neighborhood folks harmonized with the melody of children’s laughter. Everyone got along as peace and love embraced the world. It was a lot different from the year I was from, but I smiled at the sealed fate of humanity in this ethereal view. What did people do, I wondered, to deserve such a pleasant future.
A clicking metal sound snapped me out of my thought and I followed where it came from. I then found a lady who busied herself with a marmalade Hermes Baby typewriter. I tried to peep at her work and fortunately caught a few words:
“The future is nothing but a present from the past.”
I thought she did not make any sense. A part of me wanted to ask, but I also did not want to disturb her, so I helped myself and explored more of the house. Framed newspaper headlines covered the wall by the stairs. They stretched from end to end with barely any gap in between. I quickly skimmed through the collection and was amazed at how much history resided in the place. I wondered if the lady was either a journalist or just a citizen gravely sentimental of current events. As I slowly ascended the steps to see the pages up-close, a certain headline caught my eye. I couldn’t remember what it said, but it possessed such a powerful aura. I examined it for a while before my eyes explored the other frames around. They were all dated from 2020 to 2028. It took me a while to see the common denominator — people who revolutionized for a better tomorrow. There were headlines about activists, protests and rallies. Pages filled faces who fearlessly fought against injustice. The paradisal future I was in was embellished by mankind, through unity and major coups.
Perhaps my dream got too real that I woke up. Thoughts flooded as my memory of it slowly faded. A rush of realization then hit me — the future is neither prophetic nor written in the stars. They are simply responses to what we do. As Sean Patrick Flanery said, “Do something today that your future self will thank you for.” For all we know, posterity could benefit from it too. A pleasant tomorrow does not materialize on its own, it requires builders that will concretize radical change.
Human Rights should not even be controversial in the first place. It is somehow unreal to me that people need to protest and be harmed just for their lives to be valued. It’s unbelievable how minorities beg to be heard. Fascism is not an ideal form of leadership, and it has no place in a country that fought for its freedom to the grave. We do not live in a toxic environment, it is the people who make the environment toxic. Just because it doesn’t affect us now, doesn’t mean that it won’t ever do so. As Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
If you are one who hopes for better days for yourself and others, then do something. Flash news: Anyone can contribute to change. The internet is your friend. Take advantage of your resources. Educate yourself and others on current events. Use your privilege for the benefit of those in need. Speak a little louder, so that others may hear. The social and political climate we are currently in are more than just hashtags or social media trends. They make up thousands and millions of lives. There is no such thing as ‘playing it safe.’ The problem will only outlive us if we don’t fight them enough.
“This doesn’t go away once the topic isn’t trending.” — Taylor Swift (2020)