In my local paper there’s a column of reader comments. People leave input, “no more than 30 seconds” on a call-in line. Each day a few of these short statements comprise the section. While occasionally there’s a thank you for a random act of kindness or a plea to include grateful messages, most are in the against-it camp, even suggesting, at times, those who disagree should “move to another planet.”
Like a toxic vine, being against-it, whatever “it” is, seems to be burrowing deep into our cultural mindset, modeled with fervor of late in the political arena. What one party is for, the other is against. Even before an idea makes it to twitter or the blogosphere, opposing party pundits and representatives rail against whatever approach the other side might be considering.
But before finger-pointing and smugness gets the better of us, consider that the against-it road is alive in most workplaces, communities, organizations, schools, and homes. The labels are different: it’s the boss or the staff, the parents or the teachers, the rich or the not-rich, the corporations or the “real” people, the women or the men, the baby-boomers or the millennials.
Being against something is so much easier; even easier still when all you have to do is retweet or “like” a post. No thinking required. When we follow the against-it path, we don’t have to be (continue reading →)