We’re being played by the Joker.
Remember The Dark Knight? Remember the Joker? Remember the final scene when the Joker rigged two ferries with explosives? If not, watch the scene below.
One ferry was filled with ‘sweet innocent civilians’. The other ferry contained ‘Gotham’s most wanted scumbag collection’.
Both ferries were given a detonator, a choice, and a time limit: Blow up the other boat before they blow you up, or I blow you all up at midnight.
“And you may want to decide quick because the people on the other boat might not be so nobel.”
On the boat full of prisoners, the warden held the detonator and contemplated destroying the boat full of innocents. Then, a tatooed prisoner approached and showed the warden exactly what to do with the detonator:
Tattooed Prisoner: You don’t want to die, but you don’t know how to take a life. Give it to me; these men would kill you, and take it anyway. Give it to me. You can tell ’em I took it by force. Give it to me, and I’ll do what you shoulda did ten minutes ago.
[Scared, the warden hands over the detonator. The prisoner looks at it, then throws it out the window] -source: imdb
With knowledge of the destructive power of violence, the criminal stopped the crime.
Meanwhile on the boat of innocents, a fiery debate demonstrating distrust in the criminals waged, but they finally decided to maintain their innocence.
And so it was that the people of Gotham decided at the midnight hour to defy the Joker, have faith in their fellow citizens, and toss the detonators overboard. Peace was given a chance.
And peace won.
Watch the World Burn
In our real world the Joker’s social experiment is still in play. A quick glance at any newsfeed will reveal hateful language, tribalism, identity politicking and a drive toward separation from our neighbors on this planet.
We each hold a detonator and every time we speak or hit ‘Send’, ‘Publish’, or ‘Tweet’ we use the power of our words.
Are we moving to press detonate, or are we throwing the detonator overboard? What is the intention of our message?
Is it to demonize a group of people in hopes of bringing them down? Or, is it an attempt to navigate through the ambiguity of a situation and arrive at a new understanding? Remember:
The Joker only wanted to watch the world burn, and his laugh has never been as loud as it is today.
The Joke is on Us. It’s up to us to prove the Joker wrong.
It’s up to us to stand together. Toss the detonator and have a little faith in your neighbors.
We can come together. Right now.
Or we’re dead.
Watch the Social Experiment Here: