In 1992, four or five days after the Rodney King riots in South Central Los Angeles, my friends and I went to South Central to help clean up. We'd all tried to protest when the verdict was handed out, but we were easily dispersed when the Claremont riot police showed up after our attempt to take over Foothill, which was the closest major road to our college. Desperate to do SOMETHING we spent a day knee deep in muck and burned out buildings, sweeping streets and otherwise trying to do what we could to help in a situation that was pretty helpless. There were still national guardsmen on the street, and we got turned away more than once by people in military uniforms with machine guns.
After we came back to our dorms, exhausted, dirty, and totally disenchanted with how little we could help when we really, really wanted to, a massive, massive water gun/balloon/any-other-way-of-hurling-wat
er-at-each-other-fight broke out. Dozens of us were drenched to the skin, and we had a complete blast doing it.
I think the nation is doing the same thing in the wake of Furgeson and Gaza and Syria and Iraq and just all of the fucked upedness of the last week or so, and the Ice Bucket Challenge is the US equivalent to a bunch of college kids throwing water on each other in an attempt to be lighthearted and fun and forget about how awful the rest of the world is and that there's not much we can do about it.