reply to post by okyouwin
Fair question. Now, on one level, what does it matter if these people were telling the truth or not? As we read these posts we are frequently really
considering a morality question, consider what they right to be hypothetical and the questions remain.
I think the more important issue that you raise has to do with your knee jerk reaction (your words). I am in my early 50s (really) and have seen how
people are less and less patient over the years. Part of this comes out in talking to them, a news article is brought up and rather than analyzing it,
they immediately tell you how they feel about it. The articles are meant to push your buttons and are loaded with bias and half truths. Our political
choices are passion driven.
We are trained to like certain types of people and dislike others; but, it is based on the term we use to describe them. We also tend to hear one
story and then believe that all of "those people" do the same thing. Some illegal alien buys a home by lying about how much he makes and lives off
welfare and eats lobster. People then immediately say how that is what the illegals do. One person used to represent everyone that we have grouped
In school we are taught to give snap answers, we are rewarded for parroting back what we were told faster and more complete, not for thinking. We are
taught slogans. Here is something to consider. ATS is about the best debate you can find and that includes from the people that are some of the worst
contributors. At least the people on ATS read and write and many research things and challenge people.
We live in a world of sound bites and speculation. Our political discourse has degraded to a for or against mentality. For the past 40 years children
were asked in school how they felt about the news rather than what they thought about it.
In college a Professor was being snide and made the statement that Republicans were hypocrites because they against abortion but for the death
penalty. I responded by saying that liberals were hypocrites because they were for abortions and against the death penalty, I said the difference was
weather one wanted to kill the guilty or the innocent. He flipped and decided to have a real conversation about the issues. This was a class on
Political Science for non-political scientists (I was a political science major and just needed another class and knew the professor). As the
professor began to raise the real issues and question me vigorously, one of the students stood up and asked the professor if what we were discussing
was going to be on the test. The professor looked at the class and told them that the debate, the discussion was what political science was really
about. I need to say that while I am against abortion, I would not outlaw it, I am also against slavery.
Let us agree that this is not about abortion, the incident merely provides an example of a couple of things. Firstly, the teacher sought to make a
deep observation through propaganda that sounded good. I responded in the same propaganda manner showing that the issues were not that simple, only
then was he ready to have a real conversation. We both used labels to characterize whole groups, both were wrong. Not all Republicans are against
abortion and not all liberals are against the death penalty. The people listening were intended to have an emotional response and they did, the one's
that listened. The vast majority of them didn't care about the issues, they had a yes or no opinion and stopped listening to the issues.
Lets us consider how the media words things. Lets say a 19 year old boy is making out with a 17 year old girl and that they have gone to school
together since they were kids. The girls parents get angry and have the boy arrested for underage sex. Because the boy did not sleep with her it is
reduced to child molestation. The headline could read "Police officers son arrested for child molestation and given a reduced sentence" or it could
say, "Teenager arrested for kissing girlfriend". People read the headline, have an immediate reaction and may or may not read the story or think
about the issues.