By Sarah Snider
It seems to me that with all the changes happening in our world, you come across folks who are either really passionate about one side or the other, or those who can’t seem to muster up the courage to speak or care about the topic at hand. Some just avoid most social topics, especially of it’s political or religious in nature. Others take the passively argumentative approach, the “I think you’re wrong, just because I don’t feel like actually debating” sort of stance.
A friend of mine recently posed the theory that we are being trained not to have the hard conversations. Schools don’t really teach and encourage the art of oration anymore. Families when gathered rarely speak about anything significant, or sometimes don’t even speak at all since the invention of the text message. There are whole generations of people now who do not know how to even answer a phone properly, or say goodbye when the conversation is done. I work with the public, so I see the growing rate of disconnect. It’s not just about wanting things done and done now. It’s about not treating people like people. We don’t stop and just have conversations anymore. We don’t check in about real things concerning our lives, and we avoid the hot button issues.
Is this by design? Is technology making us lazy, or are we buying into some sort of insidious propaganda below the surface that convinces us it’s easier to not have the hard conversations about how we think as a culture. Too afraid to discuss what we are building as a community. Oh, and let’s certainly not talk about faith, it would make too many people uncomfortable.
I know this sounds terribly conspiracy-theorist of me. But, honestly why would it be so hard for us to be civil to one another about politics? Just because I disagree with an idea you might have, or you might disagree with an idea I have, doesn’t mean I think “you are wrong.” I just disagree. And it’s good that I disagree, we can’t all have the same ideas otherwise we would never grow and change! Change comes out of conflict, and so we need to be taking care of that growth and conflict inside our homes and communities with love. Not with dividing lines and hate. Not with harsh words that split families, and cause us to be afraid to ever speak our minds again. We take it so personally, and we shouldn’t.
You really wanna make the government and society be afraid? Start having good conversations about all the hard topics with love in your heart, and don’t back down. Start opening the door for ideas to flow out into your communities, and then beyond. We the people, right? We hold the true power.
[Sarah Snider is a "writer, poet, gamer, music lover, cineophile, Mother, Wife, and Geek." (And apparently likes the Oxford Comma.) Read more of Sarah's ramblings at her personal blog: Brilliance of Being.]
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