Project 313 – Post No. 097

Each day, I feel more isolated . . . 

Whenever I’m on Twitter or Facebook (rarer and rarer), I’m likely to encounter someone I follow retweeting someone’s tweet or sharing someone’s post; it’s what makes me feel isolated.  

“Why?” you ask. 

Because they’re invariably sharing soundbites or snippets of partisanship designed not to inform but to reinforce the idea that “our side” is great and “their side” is awful. 

Not ten minutes ago I went onto Twitter and saw one of the people I follow retweet something. Something that makes a generalization about a complicated and nuanced issue. The simplistic generalization characterized the position of certain prominent atheists as racist. 

Well, guess what? I oppose that generalization. I oppose it because it’s not as simple as it was stated and the conclusion wasn’t supported by the argument made. In fact, there wasn’t even an argument supporting the generalization; it was just stated as a fact. 

In broad terms, I hold the same position as the atheist in question and I *know* it has nothing to do with race both because I never thought about it in terms of race and because no one religion is composed solely and exclusively by a single racial group . . . most of all, because religion is not a race.  

Now, I fully support someone expressing an opinion. What I don’t — and can’t — support is inferring something beyond the topic of discussion. 

For instance, I don’t like broccoli. I freely state it as often as I can. As a never-broccoli person, I’m likely to retweet a tweet disparaging broccoli.

But, what if that tweet goes a bit further? What if the tweet said broccoli suck and anyone who likes broccoli is a moron? 

What does it say if I retweet that tweet?

What if someone asks me if I liked President Obama and I said “no”? According to what I’ve recently read and vociferously stated by people, that makes me a racist. They don’t even want to know why I don’t like him; they just assume it’s because he “looks” black. For the record, I thought he was a terrible President so, yes, I don’t like President Obama. Seeing as Obama had a white mother, am I only “partially” racist? Also for the record, I have no idea what he’s like in person, so my opinion is strictly based on the job he did as president.

These generalizations and simplifications and their subsequent distribution is a big problem with both Twitter and Facebook and most social platforms. Everything is reduced to soundbites designed not to promote discussion, but to stifle it.   

Race, gender, immigration, abortion, gun control . . . all Big Topics. 

Topics I can speak or write about for multiple hours without ever nearing any of the simple soundbites espousing inflexible positions . . . not that I — or anyone — ever can ever do that on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook and — increasingly — cable news networks, television networks, and even major newspapers. 

Soundbites . . . that’s all anyone wants to read or hear . . . 

Each day, I feel more isolated because I’m slowly dropping people who call me names . . . even if they infer it second or third-hand.

And now, the photo:

Project 313 097

This is a treatment of the leaves photo from a few posts ago. It’s been modified using the Topaz Impression plugin. It still looks pretty close to the original even when changed into a painting. Further processing will begin to distance the processed images from the original. 

They will become like soundbites . . . kind of resembling the original but narrowly expressed and almost devoid of the depth and complexity of the original photo. 

. . . but, as long as I can still get me a good cup of coffee . . .

I hear coffee might be in danger because of climate change . . . just like saffron. 

On a side note, I was contemplating the relativistic nature of time and imagined that if there was a wheel of time, it would be quite wobbly. I tried imagining it and came up with this . . . The Color Representation of the Wobbly Wheel of Time.

The Color Representation of the Wobbly Wheel of Time

And . . . that’s it

Some of these posts will likely be longer as the mood hits me, but most will be thus; short, uninteresting, bland, and relentless.

You can read about Project 313 HERE.

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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