By Deepak Chopra™ MD
Massive crises have one great advantage: They show you where you stand. The sight can be distressing and shocking. But it would be wrong to say “Who knew?” We all knew. In this country you’d have to be willfully ignorant to not know about racism, police brutality, income inequality, global warming, the staggering cost of medical care, and the rapacious activity of huge international corporations.
A secondary benefit of a massive crisis is that change can occur. People have waked up enough to protest racism and police brutality. COVID-19 deaths have waked up enough people that Medicare for all has a viable chance of happening. We cannot afford to keep recycling the same old story once things get back to normal. As overwhelming as a massive crisis is, the good news is that the solutions are just as well known as the problems.
If you stare this crisis in the face without flinching, the solutions stare back at you. They include
· Social justice. This can be solved with a fair, impartial court system and a police force that isn’t skewed to victimize minorities.
· Economic justice. This can be solved by guaranteeing a safety net for every citizen of the kind that exists in countries where social democracy already works.
· Sustainability. This can be solved by removing the pollutants and toxins that everyone knows are causing climate change.
· Peace and conflict resolution. This can be solved by demilitarizing the world and ending us-versus-them thinking.
· Epidemic disease. This can be solved by taking public health seriously everywhere it is lagging.
· Unhappiness and discontent. This can be solved largely by doing everything else on the list.
Each of these problems, by general consensus, is moving in the wrong direction. Even though everyone knows what the problems are, and generally speaking the solutions are staring us in the face, the situation isn’t improving. Why? Slavery, child labor, lynching, tainted food, and totalitarianism were changed in the past, and at the time when reformers confronted these horrific problems, the same obstacles were presented by rich, powerful, corrupt, entrenched forces acting in…