Since the 2016 election, our future has looked fairly bleak. Although the Trump administration cannot be entirely to blame, it has played a hefty role in leading our society towards an awful dystopian nightmare — the ones usually seen on the big screen.
Ever since his retirement from “The Celebrity Apprentice” and transition to president of the United States, our uber-narcissist first-world leader, Donald Trump, has gathered a storm of attributes that clearly reveal his plan towards America’s dystopian future.
With the nuclear war threats and his ignorance towards human rights, the nation that we once deeply stood for is now slowly deteriorating in this age of Trump.
It has recently occurred to me that these dystopian tropes seem all too familiar. Surely, we’ve seen it on TV or read it in a book — right?
Well, those dystopian fictions such as “The Hunger Games” and “The Giver” aren’t just another text from another genre of literature — they have become a prominent source of examples that serve as a cautionary tale to contemporary society. They are a warning to Americans about some kind of modern trend that could soon turn into reality. Maybe it is time to revisit that copy of George Orwell’s “1984” or “Animal Farm” sitting on your bookshelf from high school, or even binge-watch Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” to get a look of what our future could soon become.
So, before we realize it is too late, here are the seven signs that prove we’re heading towards a dystopian nightmare:
USING HEAVY PROPAGANDA TO CONTROL CITIZENS — GEORGE ORWELL’S “1984”
Propaganda plays a powerful role in manipulating the masses. This can be easily proven with Hitler’s Nazi regime. Words and imagery coupled with mass media can achieve domination of millions. For instance, Trump’s campaign is mainly supported by senior citizens and the misinformed. As he preys on the weak and vulnerable, they often don’t understand the concept of bias nor do they really know how to fact check their news sources.
FEAR OF THE OUTSIDE WORLD — GEORGE A. ROMERO’S “NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD”
Trump’s campaign pledges to wall off the U.S. from countries such as our southern neighbor, Mexico, as well as members from predominantly Muslim countries and Syrian Refugees. He has put in a lot of effort to reinforce the notion that the world outside of the U.S. is to be feared or disrespected. For example, he refers to third-world countries as “shitholes” or places full of “drug dealers,” “criminals” and “terrorists.”
UNDER CONSTANT SURVEILLANCE — CHARLIE BROOKER’S “BLACK MIRROR”
If you’ve ever seen Netflix’s “Black Mirror,” it’s hard to deny that our future might end up as depicted in the show. With the rise of technological advancement, every aspect of our lives continues to be watched and even persuaded by technology. Facebook and Google know us better than ourselves. Technology will soon be used as a tool for the government to spy on us. Anywhere you go, there are surveillance cameras — in the store, at your work and even in your homes. These can also be easily hacked — ever heard of the conspiracy theory of the FBI spying on us via our laptop cameras?
PRESSURE TO CONFORM TO THE NORM — MARGARET ATTWOOD’S “THE HANDMAID’S TALE”
The internet nowadays — especially Twitter — is where social justice crybabies and religious zealots flock to judge your opinion when it differs from theirs. People are forced to identify themselves based on their gender and what their functions are to society. They’re shunned from expressing individuality for not being “right in the eyes of God.” The Trump administration has already taken steps to prevent federal civil rights from applying to transgender people. So, if they plan on having any civil rights, they are pressured to identify as cisgender.
DISTRUST OF THE NATURAL WORLD — PIXAR’S “WALL-E”
There are excessive amounts of pollution in our air, water and land. It’s slowly destroying our earth, and the government could care less about green initiatives. Our president has even gone so far as to pull out of the Paris Climate Change Agreement. However, over 97 percent of scientists agree that global climate change is real. Our first-world leader refuses to not only act on any significant changes, but to even acknowledge it. We will soon realize the damage to our planet when it’s all too late and we’re living like the “Wall-E” movie.
THE ILLUSION OF A PERFECT UTOPIAN WORLD — SUZANNE COLLINS’ “THE HUNGER GAMES”
America is the best country in the world — right? People want to live here, there are ample job opportunities and “The American Dream” is very much alive, right? We seriously have the best propaganda. As we constantly tell ourselves that we’re the greatest nation in the world, our patriotism hides the fact that our so-called great nation is actually built on the backs of exploitation of cheap labor from the lower class. The upperclass, on the other hand, are the picturesque models of America, depicting a false reality as the Capitol does over the districts in “The Hunger Games.”
DEHUMANIZATION — BOOTS RILEY’S “SORRY TO BOTHER YOU”
Lower-class citizens are merely seen as wage slaves. Big corporations such as Amazon, McDonald’s and Walmart overwork their employees and blatantly exploit those in desperate need of money. They promise benefits and overtime hours but strategically keep their employees under 40 hours per week to make sure they don’t qualify for the health and dental care benefits or paid time off.