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Snowflakes & Cracked Eggshells

March 31, 2018

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Snowflakes & Cracked Eggshells

March 31, 2018

Today, I posted a new original song, called "Snowflakes & Cracked Eggshells."

 

 Typically, I like to leave my lyrics up for interpretation, but I decided that this song could use a little context for anyone who might be curious.

 

The life of this song began when, after getting frustrated about the use of "snowflake" as an insult, I pitched and wrote a Perspectives article for my high school newspaper. Below are some excerpts:

 

  • We think of snowflakes as one of the tiniest, most fragile things that occur in nature. They melt at our touch, and shoot away with one gust of wind. Still, look at what they can do when they work together. The term “snowflake,” or “liberal snowflake,” has little merit as an insult, but it is used constantly to accuse people of being easily offended.

  • Being exposed to beliefs that differ from your own is important, but it’s still essential to pay attention to what offends people, rather than immediately writing off people’s feelings as meaningless.

  • The society we live in puts an immense amount of pressure on people, especially men, to hide their feelings or toughen up. Due to fear of coming across as fragile, showing vulnerability is rare. When people are brave enough to admit they are offended by something, they deserve to be met with empathy and kindness. Too often, instead of being celebrated, kindness is written off as a trait of “liberal snowflakes” that speaks to their weakness.

  • Political parties often have different priorities, but assuming that human rights are­ valued only by liberals is problematic. Not only is it untrue, but it also portrays equality as something that can be debated, something that is purely political.

  • The danger of kindness becoming associated with a political party is that it turns a trait that should be celebrated into something that is expected only from a specific group of people. Not only does this present opportunities for people who already face marginalization to be mocked, but it gives permission for the general public to be unkind.

  • This permission is often welcomed by those who are tired of walking on eggshells. A widespread fear of cracking an eggshell underfoot is probably what led people to begin condemning political correctness as unnecessary in the first place. When you let yourself believe that people’s feelings don’t matter, you don’t have to worry about what, or who, you might step on. But being kind doesn’t mean censoring everything you say out of fear; it just means thinking twice about how your words might impact others.

 

In this article, I ended up using a few metaphors that, for me, felt too poetic to be fully explored in journalistic writing, so I got inspired to spend more time with the ideas.

 

Obviously, the lyrics of one song can't encompass all of my feelings about any one subject or idea. These lyrics in particular were difficult to write because the issues behind the song (political correctness, the question of whether honesty and kindness can coexist, the idea of sensitivity as weakness, the frustration people have when they feel like they're expected to censor their words to protect others' feelings, other stuff) are complex, multifaceted, and often divisive.

 

"Snowflake" is used as an insult in many different situations, but more and more, I see the word "liberal" being added to the front of it. I see kindness or sensitivity being labeled as weakness and associated with a political party, and to me it seems like an excuse not to listen to people - that's what was at the heart of this song when I was writing it.

A snowflake's small and fragile; by itself, it isn’t much.

It flies away with any breeze; it melts away at our touch.

But look at what they do when they stick together.

Snowflakes will change more than the weather.

 

In a world that screams to toughen up, it’s brave to share your pain.

There’s strength in sensitivity; it’s time for Care to [reign/rain].


People get fed up walking on eggshells, for fear that they’ll misstep or fall.

It’s easy to give up and just stomp all over, and believe that the ruins don’t matter at all.

You don’t have to stomp or tiptoe, to get to the other side.

Just pick them up and speak to them, until you’re satisfied.


Inside these eggs are baby birds, but though they may seem small, they’ll grow up into creatures that will fly more than they fall.


We need to hear each other out, so feel free to speak your mind.

Just know your words are heard by faces, so remember to be kind.

We all share an earth; one day we’ll all lie under graves.

Until then let’s be thoughtful; until then let’s be brave.

 

In a world that screams to toughen up, it’s brave to share your pain.

There’s strength in sensitivity; it’s time for Care to [reign/rain].

 

 

 

 

 

 

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