Life With Alacrity

A blog on social software, collaboration, trust, security, privacy, and internet tools by Christopher Allen.

Politics with Respect

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This is not a political blog, but like most bloggers I've been indundated with various discussions about the Bush Administration, Michael Moore, Red vs. Blue, etc. So much so that on some professional email lists we've had to ask the participants to use the text "[POLITICS]" in their subject lines so that we can filter out the overt political content.

One of the reasons why I tend not to participate in the political discussions is because most often they are polarizing. They tend to preach to the already converted, to harden the line, and often are too polemic. This was my problem with Farenheight 411 -- I thought there was some good stuff in the movie, but it was in a format that I didn't think would persuade the uncommitted. The first time the director used innuendo to oversell his points, and when he showed a lack of any respect for other points of view I think he lost the uncommitted audience.

Thus in general I've been reluctantly participating in the current political dialogue. I have contributed to various causes and campaigns, and have spoken to my friends about my thoughts on the subject, but I've not been bringing that activity online.

BushArtSmHowever, I really do admire this statement on a t-shirt by Jerry Michalski "Apparently half of you believe George W. Bush is an adequate president. I don't agree, and would love to talk about it respectfully". I like it because because it clearly states the respect that is needed regarding the issues that the other half believe in. You may not agree with those issues, but you will be respectful to the person that believes them. Jerry has made this t-shirt available at Cafe Press.jont

Not quite as respectful, but done with conviction is a song by UK artist Jont that I like called World Gone Blind (MP3 format), and is freely distributable under a Creative Commons' Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivitives License. I first heard him play at one of Jerry's Retreats. The song is very hip and elegant.

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