I am interested in how others perceive the word activist and any role by which how activists may affect your life? I am also curious about the perception of activists in your local social sphere, or in your local media?
Activists are often portrayed in particular archetypical ways in the media, depending on the intended audience and the message the author wishes to give.
In a positive sense, activists might be portrayed as idealists, outspoken individuals, those willing to stand up and make self sacrifices for worthwhile causes and speak for those who do not have a voice.
In a negative sense, activists can be perceived as threatening because they are challenging our way of life, or the status quo at the very least. They can be portrayed as minority group who wish to impose their viewpoints onto the rest of society. Demanding that others change their behaviour, fund particular social projects, or even fundamentally re-think your ideals and way of life. Some of these fears can be real as history shows that revolutionary change is not always beneficial
Activists can also be perceived as ineffective because they are going against some sort of inevitable grain or trend, or that they lack organisation or the ability to perform useful/necessary actions.
Yet in the past, certain groups have achieved remarkable success, but we must look at potential failures as well as successes.
Whether we perceive particular activists as positive or negative also depends on what we perceive to be their motivations.
Does the background of an activist influence your perceptions?
But not all activism is concerned with large scale change, or the big name issues. Community activism and consumer advocacy come to mind.
Does anyone here consider themselves to be an activist?
I am interested in hearing about your source of motivation, the reasons for which you choice to advocate for a particular cause.
There are plenty of causes for which we may feel a need for change, but what motivates us to take action?
A key factor for the lack of action is the fact that activism requires us to volunteer a significant proportion of time with little concrete rewards. Despite any risks.
There is an interesting guide on becoming an activist, which explains some of the methods and motivations here: