Why We Can’t Have Nice Things

 

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Over the years, I have written about the perils of groupthink. That is, that we must all have the same or similar opinion or be cast out of a particular social or political class and be assigned to the netherworld. I’ve always despised the idea that as a conservative, I must hold to certain principles, dictated by others to be considered conservative. I find the same being an atheist. I will use my limited talent for reason and logic to find my way and not be cowed into accepting what to me is something I determine to be unreasonable and ultimately illogical.

Those same that demand we must all adhere, whatever our political or social stance is, to the same principles tell us that not doing so, fractures the group and ultimately will destroy that which we have fought so hard to engender. Maybe it’s time for that. We see this currently in. our own government where now there are lists being created of those that dare to vote against the preferred dogma. We can’t have nice things anymore. It’s no longer possible to have a view outside the majority, or even attempt to have a dialogue with those we may initially disagree with, in order to learn.

A personal example would be Transgenderism. I lean towards the conservative view of that argument. I’ve read what I can, from both sides, but I cannot come to any definitive conclusion. My conservative view may be completely wrong! But as soon as I raise any questions, I’m immediately attacked from both sides. What I’m looking for are answers to be better able to refine a position, yet it’s clear to me that just asking questions, may mean that I am wither transphobic, or someone that supports the idea of transgenderism. It’s impossible to have a dialogue with anyone on this most sensitive issue.

On both sides, this is groupthink. I know I’m not alone in my stance, which is to try and learn, to understand, but I also know that I am one of the few that will dare to challenge those on either side of not only that issue, but many others as well. People don’t want to be tossed out, relegated to thought extinction, simply because they have questions. What happened to those times, not that long ago when people, in good faith, even in disagreement, could have a conversation about anything, a debate if you will, on a topic of mutual interest?

Instead of attempting to have a reasoned conversation, many resort to the stand-by: ad-hominem attacks( Digression: I can’t recall the number of times I’ve been referred to as a Neandertal. What’s interesting about that attack is the total lack of understanding by those same people about our distant cousins. They were, in fact, very sophisticated, in their way.).

We have an opportunity today that our parents and grandparents never had: communication not just within our own community, but around the world. We should take advantage of the remarkable technology we have today not to minimize those we may disagree with, but use this technology to advance our understanding between ourselves.

Ignoring inconvenient facts does not make us better, but places us in the category of  ignorance. That’s a futile endeavor.

 

 

 

 

3 thoughts on “Why We Can’t Have Nice Things

  1. I am frustrated by the dichotomy of group think as well. I wonder what your concerns are with transgender”ism”? I’m best described as a libertarian (fiscally conservative/socially liberal). I don’t understand why people feel the need to legislate/minimize or otherwise impact groups of people or activities that have no direct impact on themselves. I’d be curious to understand your perspective, since I think issues with sexuality are usually greatly informed by one’s religious beliefs.

    • Just an aside, if you plan to enter into a discussion about transgenderism, maybe start a new topic on just that, Jim. You know, in your spare time…

  2. Indeed, America once prided itself on the ability of its citizens and elected officials to engage in civil discourse in attempts to come to an agreement or to simply allow all sides to air their ideas on a subject.

    Since the Progressives have been following Saul Alinsky’s rule book, that sort of enlightened and intelligent time has been fading away until we have arrived at the unthinkable time that we are in, when those who dare to disagree or have an opinion of their own may lose their future in America and place their family’s future in jeopardy.

    I read George Orwell’s 1984 when I was in high school, but I picked it up last night and started reading it again. I don’t ever remember the terrible feeling of depression and fear being transferred to my teenaged self, as is being transferred to my 65 year old self. And, that is the times having changed so much that what was a story of the bizarre future has become a story of the possible future looming over my children and grandchildren.

    I am willing to discuss anything online, but I don’t know how much that really counts as civil discourse trying to discover what truth can be gleaned from such conversations. Unless one speaks in a national forum in which the voices speaking are being paid heed, there is little difference made.

    I am not willing to discuss anything in my real world and that is a fact, which disturbs me. I think it is because it is not just me that I must consider, but my husband especially and my family, as well. There have been times (and one recently) when I could have spoken against the subject being bandied about, but I didn’t. In these cases my opinion wouldn’t have really made any difference and would have caused others to be upset with me or angry or distrusting of me, and by connection, my husband.

    I hope that when my voice will make a difference that I have the courage to stand and speak, even if I must stand alone.

    On the transgender issue, I am of a more conservative stance, which aligns itself with facts and history and common sense and biology and psychology when it comes to policy making. But I am not about to be prejudiced toward transgendered people, nor offended that they make the choice to alter their sex. I tend to be more concerned for their stability and future.

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