Hi folks. I’m Dave! Nice to meet you.
I want to introduce myself by quoting an article a friend shared with me, The Case Against Hope. It’s written by professor, writer and commentator Roxanne Gay. In it, Gay says we can’t simply “hope” for change, we need to make it ourselves.
Here’s the passage that really stuck with me:
“But instead of thinking about hope, I want to continue thinking about possibility. When we hope, we have no control over what may come to pass. We put all our trust and energy into the whims of fate. We abdicate responsibility. We allow ourselves to be complacent. We are all just people living our lives as best we can, aren’t we? It is easy to feel helpless. It is much harder to make ourselves uncomfortable by imagining the impossible to be possible. But we can do that. We can act, even in the smallest of ways.”
… “imagining the impossible to be possible”...gives me goosebumps every time I read it.
This is our challenge, as Millennials and younger Canadians. We’re excited about where we want to be. But overwhelmed by the struggle to get there. We see and experience climate change, poverty, racial and gender injustice, the unaffordability of the roof over our heads. Feeling helpless in the face of all this, we let out a collective sigh: “What can we possibly do about all this?”
But, the truth is, we’re not helpless. Rather, we are united in this valid feeling of helplessness. And I believe that unity is empowering us to create change.
I see it in students skipping school on Fridays to strike against climate inaction. I see it when young professionals and families speak up about how drastically expensive it is to live in cities big and small. I see it in communities protesting the erosion of important support systems. I see it when Generations X, Y and Z realize that we make up the biggest voting group in Canada.
Young people are determined to make a difference. To put it in Roxane Gay’s terms, we are striving to imagine “the impossible to be possible”.
As we act together, we can map out a better world for us all, young and old. But we can’t do it alone.
Young Canadians need their voices to be heard and amplified. We need research and data that demonstrates that younger generations have fewer opportunities and new burdens compared to the past. We need adequate political representation so that decision makers can’t ignore us or malign our voices as “Millennial entitlement”.
That’s why I’m so excited to work with Generation Squeeze.
Gen Squeeze stands out for its track record of doing just this. Grounding the issues in research and showing up alongside young Canadians to make our elected leaders listen. Gen Squeeze stands out as an organization that transforms the helpless feelings of young Canadians into empowerment.
When given the opportunity to join the team as Digital Strategy Lead, I responded with an emphatic “Yes!” During these first few weeks in my role, I’ve seen an incredible community that is passionate about building a better world for young and future generations. I’m thrilled to have the privilege of working with this powerful community and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.
I want to finish with one last quote from Roxane Gay. She ends her piece with a call to replace hope with recognition of our power:
“What we really must wish for one another is the power of all that might be possible if we do anything more than hope.”
I’m excited for the “impossible” things we can imagine, together.
Younger Canadians are being squeezed. Help squeeze back by checking out our action centre, where you can learn about all our active campaigns and help make our voices even louder.