Monday, July 28, 2008

Uncomfortable Truths, Uncomfortable Questions

What is an ideologue? It is a person who will ignore or deny a body of facts that threaten his personal or political philosophy. Every day I seem to run into this willful blindness. Here are some of the questions I ask every day.
Companies spend millions of dollars on advertisements based on proven evidence that these ads are effective. Money is even paid to movie producers to show a product for a split second in the middle of a move. How can we seriously debate the influence that movies, TV and music have on personal behavior? It kind of reminds me of the denial engaged in for years by the tobacco companies.
Why do we talk about reverse racism? If someone dislikes someone because of the colour of their skin, that is plain old racism, regardless of who they hate.
If someone gets into a college because his father went there or made big donations to the college, is that affirmative action for rich people?
What if a college decides to give a chance to a poor kid from a single parent home who went to a lousy school and kicked a drug habit? Is that a poor disadvantaged kid? If his or her numbers and his life story add up as eligible for affirmative action why not wait until the first day of school to see what race he or she is?
The ancestors of most Blacks in America came in on slave ships. Their birth records have been mostly erased. That is why they have Black Pride instead of Senegalese pride or Kenyan pride. That is why White pride or Euro American pride doesn't add up for me. Irish pride or Cajun pride makes a lot more sense.
If 40% of white people in an African American neighbourhood are robbed and only 5% of the African Americans in the area are targeted, are the criminals guilty of ethnic profiling?
Opponents of a Jewish state say they want Jews and Arabs to have full civic equality in the state they envision. Why do they support a state in which Jews may not live?
When was the last time you saw a clergy person scripted into a positive role on TV? How much more frequently are they ridiculed?
If you produce too much corn or copper, their prices will go down. What happens when you flood the labour market?
When a white person rails against African Americans, he is a white supremacist. Is Reverend Wright a Black supremacist?
Why do you need health insurance and dental insurance? It is known that heart disease can be caused by bad teeth. Why not have one policy for everything?
Why are children in public school not allowed to pray out loud but in jail they will get a chaplain? Would chaplains in public schools help kids stay out of jail?
While we are on the subject of prisons, why don't we care more about violence in prisons? The liberals don't want to deal with "oppressed" people who oppress others and conservatives tend not to care about what prisoners do to each other. How much violence on outside of prison walls is caused by people who as perpetrators or victims learned new patterns of brutality in prison?
"Right to life" and family values resonate strongly with me. So do universal health care and a living wage. If you value the family, then value the labour with which that family is supported.
Each political party tends to ask some questions and avoid others. Most people ask all of those questions. Maybe our leaders should too. Sphere: Related Content

1 comment:

Burr Deming said...

Our site takes a more supportive view on affirmative action. But yours is certainly defensible. Thanks for adding your voice to the blogging universe.