The greatest threat to the world today is not one flavour of fundamentalism or another, globalization, or changes in the environment, it is indifference and/through (willful) ignorance taken in the literal sense of ignoring that about which one feels they ought not be concerned. It is this invisible guiding force that allows us to succumb to inaction and intolerance. It isn’t just the actions that need re-thinking but also the context. But what tools do we have to consider the context and not just the action?
If you don’t believe me, consider Unicef’s 2006 State of the World’s Children report that they called Excluded and Invisible (link to report – you can download the whole thing as a PDF)
I’ve been giving the concept of ‘political correctness’ a lot of thought recently. Conceptually political correctness means looking for neural ways in which to act and speak about each other and the world around us.
On the surface this move makes perfect sense (and, to be sure, has been a fixture in society for quite some time). In reality, however, I find that political correctness works more toward dampening rather than alleviating bias and (in)difference.
I feel more tolerated than understood or accepted most of the time. It’s almost refreshing to speak to people who feel no burden of political correctness on their conduct. At least then I know what they’re thinking rather than having to guess.
Until and unless one is able to experience bias no dialogue can begin. Fear over upset shouldn’t be the basis of language and interaction or else there can be no real reciprocity.