2005-03-31

Shiavo Case Makes Strange Bedfellows


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... and apparently "strange bedfellows" is a new concept for some people.

Jesse Jackson working with Jeb Bush ... Good Lord! It's that cold day in hell that we've all been waiting for. And, as noted in my previous post, I find myself agreeing with many people with whom I normally disagree and vice versa.

That's OK. When human beings are confronted by controversy, and everyone gives the matter due consideration, people will often arrive at different conclusions because we are, after all, different. In fact, not only is this "OK." It's probably very good for us.

So, on this issue, the teams have been switched up and it's got a whole host of folks all discombobulated. The other night Alan Colmes just couldn't get around Jeb and Jesse working together. In his mind this was the highest hypocrisy. Of course in Colmes mind everything is the highest hypocrisy where someone with the name Bush is involved so no news there.

Still, this is a sad statement, and bigger minds than Colmes have fallen into the same trap. If I disagree with you on one thing, but then agree on another, how is that hypocrisy and not simply human nature? Well, it's all in how we do business these days.

The problem is two-fold: 1. We've became far too polarized. 2. Critical thought is dying. These days we are less about wrestling with things constructively and arriving at a workable conclusion, and more about winning. When a challenge arises most look to see which side their "team" is taking, gather the talking points, and march forward as an opionated puff of cluelessness wrapped in a shell of blather disguised as knowledge. Few will weigh situations against their world view because few have a world view!

Christians are not exempt. "I follow the Bible" is now code for "I follow what religious icons of today tell me that people who follow the bible should follow. And, since God has been invoked, I do so with much fervor!"

So now, when we arrive at a controversy so strong that one can't help but work on it mentally, many suddenly find themselves disagreeing with old teammates. In a time where disagreement calls for scorched earth, this is trouble.

James, over at Outside the Beltway found himself on the business end of a delinking earlier today. I'm not linking the original source because it is all such nonsense - the blog equivalent of taking your toys and going home. Among OTB's heresy on Shiavo:
"...the courts have determined about 18 times that what the husband says is the proper interpretation of the truth. That may not be so, but I'm confident enough in my own infallibility to know that they probably can assess the situation better than I can."
The audacity! Delinking is too good for them! But, if you're going to follow this delinking thing to its logical conclusion, why link anyone at all? Eventually you'll disagree with everyone on something, though probably not the same thing.

Agreeing with someone you previously disagreed with shouldn't be hypocrisy, but unfortunately it can be. When disagreement involves demonizing the person with whom you disagree; if it involves discrediting not only their ideas but also their person, their worth and their ability to arrive at worthwhile ideas then you are setting yourself up. When suddenly you find yourself in agreement with that same person, and wanting to work with them, you're a hypocrite. The key isn't your sudden agreement. It's the regrettable extremes you went to when disagreeing.

My point is, it's OK to agree, and it's OK to disagree regardless of the philosophical or politcal bent of the parties involved. When we are pursuing life with integrity we should expect plenty of both.

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