In today’s culture wars, one of the things that annoys me most is how people, usually on the extreme ends (and who are usually the most vocal), make snap judgments.
One side might preach “tolerance” until they’re asked to tolerate something. Another side is quick to label someone, or give a person unsolicited advice, before even thinking what it’s like to walk a mile in a person’s shoes.
Not only are there culture wars, there are also subculture wars where some folks want to tell anyone on what they believe to be “our side” how to conduct his/herself. It’s all very tiresome and I attempted to address it in a recent column I wrote:
I read about the backlash against Ellen and was surprised by some of the reactions. Me personally, I feel that if you can't sit and talk with someone that has opposing beliefs, you also aren't listening. If you aren't listening, you aren't learning. If you aren't learning, you remain a child forever. I don't agree with a lot of Ellen's political beliefs but if she every asked me, I would sit down with her on her show or in a football stadium anywhere and anytime. I'm sure I would probably be laughing it up too.
Excellent column, Bob! What kind of a response did you get?
Ed — you’re so right about people not listening!
Kelly - I received one email from a reader and it was positive.
Good message, Bob. I was upset when I first heard this to think that Ellen was rooting for the Cowboys, but then she cleared that up in a lighthearted way. Those who live on the extremes, on the right or left, drive me crazy.
Growing up as an LGBT person in an abusive and homophobic family, I had this naive notion that when I went to university I would at last find "my people" in artistic and liberal circles. One of the more disillusioning experiences of my life was to discover the near total lack of compassion, despite abundant professed compassion, in this group. And then there are the evangelical Christians, who could might as well be a successful public relations campaign to convert people to the worship of Satan.
I really feel you here.
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