Thursday, December 13, 2018

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Their Thoughts
2018-09-13

            As the world, our nation, our state, and yes, even our local communities continue to be roiled up in a variety of controversies, real or imagined, it seems like the first casualties are respect, common decency, courtesy. 

            Hate is growing and is starting to permeate into what used to be common discussions. No longer is it socially acceptable to agree to disagree.  

            "It's my way or the highway" seems to be the battle-cry in any argument anymore.  Trying to learn and understand is seen as a weakness for those who seek information.  A perceived weakness by those who would bully them into their way of thinking.

            A difference of opinion shouldn't be fighting words.

            The word "transparency" should be banned from the vocabulary of all elected officials.  It doesn't exist at the level it should.  Perhaps if we could find a way to open government and keep it open, "official" information would flow better – without the need to quote an "anonymous source."

            It shouldn't matter "who's right" but "what's right."  Often times being right means taking the high road and avoiding an argument – one that could turn ugly.  But then, information isn't shared and opportunities to learn are lost.

            Speaking of lost, friends and family members are lost as well - and all because disagreeing points of view are no longer accepted in our lives.

            More and more people fail to speak their minds because they are afraid of repercussions.  Most of those feared repercussions seem to be what somebody might write about them on social media.  Wow!

            Which brings to mind, fewer people fail to speak because they're too busy posting on social media.  Posting messages that, perhaps, they're too fearful of delivering in person.  Maybe they forgot how to communicate in person and find a perceived strength in their keyboard.  Or, perhaps they enjoy the perceived power they think is provided by distance or anonymity.

            We as a people, have forgotten how to communicate in person, shake a hand, pat a back, share a smile, or look someone in the eye. 

            We post an emoji where we could have told someone what we really think.  The look on a person's face, a twinkle or tear in an eye can put feeling in spoken words.

            "I'm sorry" and "thank you" take on a little extra when done with a hug or a hand shake.

            We need to stop hiding and start showing and speaking.  We need to let people know who we are and what we stand for.

            And, we need to start being better listeners and take the opportunity, whenever we can, to learn more.

            Remember, you're not the only person who thinks they have a good idea or a sound position. 

            Share it, discuss it, and listen to others.

            Their thoughts could make your decisions better.


 

 

 

 

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