Project 313 – Post No. 151

My recent post touched on how we approach our interactions with others. 

One thing not overtly stated but hinted at is that every conversation has two levels. And, that’s if you’re lucky. Some conversations have so many levels that it’s difficult keeping track of them all. 

You know the ones . . . politics and religion are the broad categories but within those there are literally hundreds of interlinked issues dealing with race, gender, bias, discrimination, persecution, individual rights, the responsibilities and duties of the state, and so on, and on, and on.

Dishonest individuals will always — always — link two or more issues to their advantage, usually ignoring connections and interdependencies that weaken their arguments. 

The sad part about today’s societal norm is that we live at a time when we can threaten others and demand they agree with us just by linking two separate things and treating them as if they are the same. 

Why people don’t recognize the toxicity of such behavior baffles many . . . but I have a hypothesis.

Well, it’s not exactly mine; I culled it from the aggregations of many articles and opinion pieces and the study of human behavior and my personal experiences. 

What’s my hypothesis?

I think that the combination of shortened attention spans (promoted by our interactions in social media) and the lack of critical thinking education (encouraged by religious and political entities) and the rise of the victim mentality (encouraged by pretty much everyone) has gotten us to where we are today. 

It’s easy to test this hypothesis . . . pick a topic, study it, think about it, read what others say about it — especially people you don’t agree with — and then formulate your own opinion starting from a neutral position. 

It would be helpful if you had a friend — or even someone you don’t outright hate — who has opinions differing from your own and who is willing to calmly discuss why they believe what they do as they listen to you do the same.  

Understand, even if they are not willing to listen to you, at least pay attention and then research what they tell you they believe and why. 

At the very least, you’ll then be more informed than they are and if you disagree with them you have a basis for doing so. 

 What I just described is very difficult. In the public sphere — all of the public sphere I’m familiar with — I count maybe two or three individuals who do that. 

Public Sphere: by this, I mean talk shows, pundits, “opinion-makers” whatever that means, and anywhere the opinions you hear are not questioned but are presented as facts. Sadly, more and more this sphere includes news outlets that once upon a time could be counted on for honest reporting. More and more, even news outlets seem more agenda-driven and less information-driven.

In my personal sphere, I can count significantly more . . . which begs the question . . . why listen to people in the public sphere?

Well, the only people who do typically don’t have the time or inclination to think for themselves. 

And now, the photo:

Project 313 151

These ladies are a bit like most difficult subjects . . . it’s hard to focus on the details. I mean, we know what they are and their general shape, size, and can even describe some features . . . but the details are muddled. It could be one thing or another. 

Alas, some things are destined to remain thus while others might — in time — resolve themselves more clearly.

. . . but, it takes effort and the willingness to explore and learn.

Not everyone has that capacity . . . 

. . . sadly, they’re often the loudest and most adamant about the clarity and simplicity of even the most complicated issues. 

Oh, that everything would be as clear as a . . . Metallic Layered Amoeba With Measles.

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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