Saturday, September 4

Big Brother Doesn't Want to You to Think

"Speak up for yourself or you'll end up a rug". -Mae West.

Man people are so polarized. I am constantly astounded and amazed at the vitriol being spewed these days under the guise of political discussion. Like this fellow let’s get to the business of what to do about it. Let’s have a debate not an argument. There is a long history and methodology to debate where one presents a point with facts to back it up, then a counterpoint is offered in a thoughtful, intelligent manner. Arguing is “You’re wrong, I’m right go to hell ”. Not productive. There are ways to enter into debate that are civilized and useful.

One, always be polite, no shouting or ranting it tunes out any effective listening. Speak in a calm, conversational tone and stay on topic.

Two, acknowledge the other point of view, even that old sexist gas bag St. Paul ( oops personal insults are a no-no ) would comment positively on the locals religious habits them suggest a new improved God, the Christian God in his patter. He would have been a great car salesman.

Three, as pointed out always call the person on the source of the information they are repeating. Make it personal. Where did you hear this? What is the motive behind such claims? Where is the proof? Have you been directly affected?

When the dictator of Romania was arrested ( I can't spell his name, sorry) people told stories of the secret police. A western reporter promptly asked if anyone in the crowd had ever been arrested or recall anyone taken away by the police and surprise! none of them could. They were brainwashed to believe it just like other people believe what they hear.

Consider these suggestions in your own internal dialogue. Are you in control of your response and understanding of what is being said? If what you hear triggers a highly charged emotional response in you, you can bet that was the intention. Calm down and question whether that response is valid or not. Stay informed, listen to different points of view in politics, news, etc. and always consider what you hear with a healthy dose of skepticism.

There is more value in someone engaging in critical thinking than converting them. What is important here is getting people to think for themselves, otherwise they are just sheep. We got enough of them.

Now go forth and educate.

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