Elle (theroadtoelle) wrote,

Sometimes it's harder than it looks...

Prompt: "If I ruled the world, I'd __________..."

I'd probably dissolve into a puddle of inadequacy. It's incredibly easy to criticise politicians. It's much harder to be a good one. Sure, there are things that would be a personal priority for me. Equality is already pretty sorted here in New Zealand, thank goodness, and I know that our healthcare and education systems are better than in some other countries, but there's still so much room for improvement.

I wrote that paragraph *Up* and got curious about how NZ ranked, globally, on stuff.

We have the highest possible scores in political freedoms, political rights and civil liberties.

We're first equal for the least corruption.

Apparently we're the most prosperous country in the world, whatever that means. *Think*

Apparently it's really easy to do business here. We're ranked 2nd for ease of doing business, and 1st for ease of starting a business. That might have something to do with the whole prosperous thing.

We're ranked 8th for press freedom.

We're ranked 10th equal for literacy with a rate of 99%.

Those are all good things. But some things we suck at. We have the highest teen suicide rate IN THE WORLD. Twice as high as the US and nearly five times as high as the UK. Like, seriously, what the fuck is wrong with us? We live in this amazing country, with all these advantages, and yet something is seriously, seriously wrong.

I don't know what is causing the high teen suicide rates. When it comes to overall rates, we're ranked 72nd, so the problem is specifically teenagers. Some quick research shows that it's at least partially a cultural thing, as the rates are much higher (within New Zealand) in Maori and Pacific Island teens than in other teens. There's also mention of bullying in schools, family violence and child abuse. Poverty is also a factor.

So we're a beautiful country, with free education, free healthcare, no corruption and plenty of prosperity...but we're assholes who mistreat our children so that they are left feeling like there is no option but to kill themselves to escape. *Sad* It sounds like some fucked up fiction novel, but it's here.

What can you do about it? That's the tricky question.

I just remembered the prompt. It's a very global prompt. Okay, so my initial point was that it's easy to see the things that are wrong, but much harder to fix them. You have limited resources, everything takes time, you can never please everyone, people have different approaches and sometimes there's more than one way to skin a cat. That's a weird saying, more than one way to skin a cat. You say that to kids these days and they think you're a violent, cat murdering freak. No, really. I saw it happen when my mum used it with my kids one day. Was very funny.

I digressed again, sorry.

So...fuck, I don't know! These are huge issues that can't be sorted by one person. I'm not an advocate of making committees just to waste time talking instead of DOING, but these are issues that need more than one head to solve them.

Sigh. I think the answer is that the responsibility would be such a heavy weight on my shoulders that I'd collapse and dissolve into a puddle of inadequacy. Woah, this post came full circle, huh?
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