Tuesday, October 3, 2017

What It Means to Live in the Solution: No Piling On

By choosing to live my life in the solution, I don't pile on. No, I'm not talking about jumping on the ball carrier in tackle football after he is down. I'm referring to "piling on" individuals or organizations who've committed some transgression, long after the initial revelation has passed. I'm talking about the seemingly endless jokes, parodies, sarcasm, and other material created to mock the faux pas. I'm referring to tweets, posts, videos, and other social media concoctions. I'm thinking of the mélange of rumor and innuendo that follows guilty parties for some time (if they're lucky).  I'm not talking about serious, intense scrutiny into issues that have widespread significance. We must continue to direct our critical energies towards acts that threaten our collective well-being.  I'm talking about piling on to individuals or organizations already down because of their behaviors. I'm talking about ridiculing those who have already paid dearly for their sin in the eye of the public. There's no need to add to their misery. They're suffering for what they did or didn't do, and likely will continue to do so. Subjecting them to our continued daggers serves no good. We might be fueled by anger, a need to make ourselves look good at someone's expense, or some other purpose. It doesn't matter, as our darts add nothing to the public discourse. Consider United Airline's decision to drag a passenger off an overbooked flight. Or Justine Sacco's unfortunate tweet. Or Anthony Weiner's sexual indiscretions. No doubt the key players in these circumstances have paid a steep price for their behaviors. They should have. That we had to perpetuate these and other melees makes us no better than them, those we aimed to ridicule.  In short, being in the solution means I don't pile on. 

(I've written four blog posts, including this one, on what it means to live "in the solution." Read them hereherehere, and here). 

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