Friday, December 28, 2007

A Kinder, Gentler Rant

Every so often, I read political blogs. Unfortunately, they often seem to be rants, and these rants come from all sectors… rants about how the US middle class is causing global warming, and rants about how Al Gore is mistaken (and we shouldn’t believe anything he says because he didn’t really invent the internet anyway); rants about how good things are happening in Iraq and rants about how bad things are happening in Iraq, and both are probably true, just as good and bad things have been happening in that area of the world for at least 4,000 years. Sometimes, I even get caught up in comment threads where people conduct virtual arguments, picking at semantics and occasionally making insightful and even brilliant points. One thing I’ve noticed is the intense contempt some of these writers have for anyone who doesn’t share their opinions… and this in turn makes me respect them less. I try to see their viewpoint, but frankly, it’s hard. I imagine it would be just as hard for them to see mine.

It makes me wonder, as I read a rant with which I disagree, if the labels were reversed, would the content really change? Or would it just be another rant? In other words, I think we would be much better served by constructive problem-solving, rather than by blaming large groups of others for the world’s problems. Instead, the issue at hand is always someone else’s fault.

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