TED Conversations

Student Government - ASB Cabinet Member, Woodcreek High School

This conversation is closed.

Where is the next Battleground for Humanity?

We have two options for making the world a better place. Either 1) set up tomorrow for success, or 2) work for success today.

Option 1 would be to focus energies on the (real) education and inspiration of the younger generation- to make them "cultivated do-ers"-, and can be best defended by the idea that there are too many problems in the world for current "natural do-ers" to tackle today.

However, Option 1 runs the risk of coming too late, or it simply not "panning out" as we expect. Option 2 (to simply "do" today) is the path taken by most activists, who, I think we can all agree, serve a VERY important purpose in the world. Option 2 also keeps up momentum for the next generation of "natural do-ers". With this option, there is no guarantee of any increase or decrease in the "natural do-er" population.


The actual question, part 1:
So where do the great men and women of today and the near tomorrow need to go to best "fix" the world? Do we need more do-ers, or more do-er cultivators? Keep in mind that the TED community would be an example of a "do-er cultivator".

The actual question, part 2:
Should these "do-ers" of today and the near tomorrow focus on their countries, and communities, or go out and focus on others?

If it helps, try approaching this question from two angles:
#1 - Which group ("natural do-ers" or "do-er cultivators") is struggling the most?
#2 - Which group ("natural do-ers" or "do-er cultivators") is most beneficial to humanity?

Share:
  • thumb
    Mar 25 2011: This is certainly an interesting question, Riley. I think that we need a combination of both. If everyone tackled the problem that they were most interested in at whatever level to which they had access we would have a million problems being worked on at once with passion and creativity.
    If you look at TED talks of the past you will see what I mean. There is a man in India who was having trouble breathing so he decided to learn about which plants would clean and refresh his indoor air supply. He converted first his home and then his business high rise to clean their own air. In doing so he improved his own life, the life of his employees and colleagues and then he reached out to share that knowledge with the TED community. I was in a store the other day in Canada and a woman rolled up to the check out with the exact plants that that Indian man had suggested. I could not resist asking if she had seen the TED talk and she had! One man from half way around the world is changing some of the air in Canada.
    An old expression is the 'we should bloom where we are planted' but that does not preclude the seeds of our thoughts and actions from flying away like dandelion or milkweed puffs to far off places.