By Dan Morrison
After much procrastination, the site is up and finally has its first post- hazaar! This piece will elaborate a bit more on the ‘About’ page and show you the thought process behind our idea.
To invoke Albert Camus- rather pretentious, I know- we live in a strange, peculiar time. Social media means we can know and be in contact with more people than ever, and know more stuff in general. Fifty years ago, long distance friends were hundreds of miles and a letter apart, wars could go virtually unheard of. Today, they are an email or a ‘FaceTube’ message away, whilst the suffering of others’ is a look-at-Twitter away. But do we know people any better? Do we actually care that much about the stories we see? How firm a grasp do we have on reality? I know that I am in deficit on all counts.
I shared an article a while ago on the much fabled Facebook (I think it is going to be pretty big one day, check it out) entitled ‘You probably won’t read this piece about Syria.’ A provocative title, the piece marked the fifth anniversary of the Syrian civil war. I shared it and 0.54% of my Facebook friends ‘liked’ it, but I do not know if any more than these four more- than-fine people read the article. Ed Miliband has had near universal ridicule for various superficial reasons during his Labour leadership, from failing to eat a bacon sandwich with grace (who can though?) to a paper telling the world that he, a man, has had girlfriends before. On the other hand, a petition to protect and resettle Afghan interpreters, who worked alongside British forces and are targeted by Taliban for doing so, has 96,309 supporters according to change.org. When you consider the chorus of damnation that Miliband has received, the choirs of indifference towards the Afghans are deafening. And of course, it is not just the Afghan interpreters that we have forgotten, overlooked or not been informed about. Many more are left behind, often right on our figurative doorstep. Among many other things, we hope we can illuminate these stories.
It won’t all be political. We are conscious of the problems our generation is having in this rapidly evolving and, to some extent, fragmenting society. At the same time as mental health spending is being threatened, these issues are rife among young people, coming in many different forms. Housing is stretched for everyone, and many feel it is near impossible that they will be able to own their own house when the time comes. And what about social media? Its veil of anonymity gives people the strength to vent at whatever they see fit, yet it also isolates people. As is seemingly rife in in the ‘Western world,’ as the strong get stronger, the weak only get weaker. Our aim is to open up dialogue for people on all these issues, including a feature where anybody can submit anonymous pieces about their struggles in youth.
Of course, life is quite absurd in hilarious and amusing ways as well. In what other realm could somebody think Nigel Farage has been sent by God to fight the EU? We hope to be able to produce entertaining pieces as well as the more serious stuff.
To begin with, we will produce mainly written articles, but as we progress, we aim to produce investigatory pieces, videos and interviews, as well as some poetry, satire and a cartoon strip. If you want to get involved you are more than welcome to get in touch; as long as you are not too barmy, we will be keen to have you on board. Equally, contact us if you would like any topics covered or have any suggestions- we would love to hear from you. Rounding off, we hope that you can find something of interest on this site. I think the innocence of youth that we possess will help us provide something slightly different for you.