The TownhallSocial issues

How an ‘Avatar’ mindset can save our democracy; and our individuality

By Jon Sherfey

Editor’s note: The opinions expressed here are those of the authors. View more opinion on ScoonTV. 

Today’s political landscape is extremely divided. Party lines often break up families. The left and right are in opposition to each other and that conflict goes deeper than the voting booths. People are judged and disliked in their own communities purely based on their political beliefs. 

If that wasn’t enough, politicians further divide Americans using identity politics. They try to force people’s politics into boxes based on their gender and ethnicity. It’s harder than ever to be an independent thinker due to these societal pressures. Yet, there is an escape to a world where everyone is equal and these societal issues of earth don’t exist. It’s called Pandora, and you may know it from the hit feature film “Avatar.” 

You may be thinking “Avatar” isn’t real, but that doesn’t mean the movie doesn’t have lessons to impart. Besides, “Avatar” may not be “real” in the literal sense, but mentally I’ve painted myself blue like a Na’vi every day since 2009.  

The reality of “Avatar” is that it’s a mindset. It’s a mindset that will help all Americans become less judgmental and more compassionate politically, even if one chooses not to paint themselves blue. 

By using what I call the “Avatar Mindset,” one can overcome the societal pressures to vote certain ways. No longer will there be judgement for voting. CNN commentators won’t make arguments like, “You’re black and you have to vote this way.” Fox News commentators won’t make arguments like, “You’re white and you have to vote this way.”  

As President Biden (Na’vi name: President Brandon) said, 

“If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re voting for me or trump, then you ain’t black.” That’s right Joe. We are blue. 

The Avatar Mindset doesn’t erase culture either. It just highlights the shared humanity necessary for a unified society. Of course, the melting pot of ethnicity and culture is very important to America and helps make us who we are. However, by separating oneself from the narratives of how one should vote based on “culture,” we can be freer and think more independently. Thinking of yourself as a Na’vi in the voting booth is just my patented method to achieve this separation.  

The Avatar Mindset goes beyond fixing identity politics in America. The politics of the Na’vi themselves would be much more compassionate and healthier to adapt to our culture as well. 

Americans can be greedy. After economic growth, Americans in power neglect the environment which allows us life. The Na’vi, on the other hand, deeply respect their environment. Tapping into the Avatar Mindset, one can also become more tapped into the natural world around them. Through this collective admiration of nature, we can further preserve this earth for future generations.  

While this eco-friendly mindset makes it sound like the Navi are pushovers, it’s actually quite the opposite. They work together as a community in the face of total extinction. When Earth invaders tried to take Pandora’s coveted natural resource “unobtanium,” the Na’vi didn’t squabble the whole time over if someone was a dark enough shade of blue to lead them. Instead, they fought back. Compare that to American culture, which has become so atomized, so lonely, and so judgmental of others. 

We can adopt this mindset as well by being compassionate and peaceful, but also able to defend ourselves when push comes to shove. No sex with hair tentacles needed.  

While the Avatar Mindset is designed for an equal society, that does not mean the society we are in is equal. It is still important to fight for disenfranchised groups. What the Avatar Mindset does, however, is make those not part of these disenfranchised groups fight alongside them. By understanding our common humanity though mentally painting ourselves blue and living like Na’vis, we can erase prejudice.  

Now, I refer to painting oneself blue in a strictly metaphorical sense, but there are some “Avatar” fans who have strived to make Pandora a reality and even left the theater depressed that it wasn’t real. They do say you have to dress for the job you want. Maybe the same is true with worlds.  

While using paint is easy, making the world around you as wondrous as Pandora is a bit trickier. One trick is going to see “Avatar: The Way of Water” multiple times. Another trick is taking your newly-painted self to a sensory deprivation tank and start soaking.  

If these literal fixes to create Pandora are too time consuming, unnecessary, or even unhealthy, just take the Avatar Mindset to the voting booth instead. The important thing is not allowing politicians’ views of what a certain group should vote for to influence your own beliefs. By believing in the vision of Pandora, one can see the shared humanity and culture of our country and furthermore our planet. We can then be independent in our ideas, while more connected through our common Earth and values.  

So, whether you are painting yourself blue or just adopting the compassion and equality of the Avatar Mindset, remember that it is important to stay independent while also connected to our neighbors. That’s what makes this country beautiful.

Subscribe to get early access to podcasts, events, and more!

Jon Sherfey

Tags: , , , , ,
Previous Post
The liberal’s ice is colder
Next Post
Who started the Ethiopian Civil War?

Related Articles

Tags: , , , , ,