Our Personal Politics and Diplomacy by Garden Girl – March 19, 2014
CFN – One of the first few things I learned when studying journalism is the importance of being unbiased. You can’t rationally write an objective article about somebody or something if you have an attachment of any kind to the subject. Your opinion will sway the flavour of your article, consciously or subconsciously, and besides that, a journalist’s job is to present the story to the reader so that the reader can make an informed decision about what they think of the situation or subject. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love to read passion-fuelled articles, for they are the most colourful of articles and can really paint a picture that only deep passion can draw.
I also learned many years ago that life is so much easier to take my opinion out of the equation. It really doesn’t matter in my day-to-day life that I hate someone or something, such as Paul Bernardo per se, because people and subjects like him have no immediate impact on me and my daily decisions unless they directly touch my personal life, and nor should they. That is why, as a civilization we pay for law enforcement, so that we don’t have to be personally entwined into every situation. Yes, I loathe people of the likes of him, same with any logical and rational person, but getting inflamed over a person I have never met, to me, is wasted energy, brain space and time.
One of the wisest people I know once told me “Choose your battles.”, and still to this day, that advice is some of the sagest I have ever received. I mean, ultimately, in the long run, to me and my soul’s path, what does it matter if Joe Blow thinks that Michelangelo’s masterworks are on the ceiling of the Sixteenth Chapel or the Sistine Chapel, I know the truth. This took a while to master, I felt I couldn’t walk away until Joe Blow knew that it was the Sistine Chapel.
It was as though I took on the tiresome task to educate against ignorance. Like it was my responsibility to educate someone who obviously doesn’t care enough to educate themselves. But, this also introduced to me another too-popular character flaw, people who argue unfounded facts. I am the first to admit when I don’t know something, and to tell you if I can offer advice by means of my own personal experience. Mainly because of the fact that I love learning and sharing knowledge. Don’t get me wrong, I am not perfect and I have caught myself in the past few years being closed-minded, but I make constant efforts not to be. I love to listen to all sides and attempt to see the BIG picture before I allow myself to have an opinion. I keep my mind open to every and any thing. It doesn’t mean I approve or disapprove, it just means I like to know as much as possible about any given subject or scenario. My opinion/judgement doesn’t validate the existence of any situation or subject, so in essence, I see it as wasted energy. I can only use what I know to make the best decisions for myself and to offer advice to those I care about, if asked to.
What has prompted this stream of consciousness is that lately I am alarmed at the rate of people who take sides on issues, instead of taking it upon themselves to educate and form their own opinions. Imagine if all the energy spent on picking sides was spent on mediating? In the grand scheme of things, there is only ONE side, futility of humanity.
We should all want what is best, not just for ourselves right now, but for everyone in the future. In essence, this theory is like math, there is only one right answer. No excuses. But, it is up to the individual to take it upon himself to work out the problem in complete totality to form an answer. When presented with a question such as “Should we store chemicals in containers underground, along our waterfront?” I feel the answer should be a resounding no amongst all parties, regardless of class or political interests.
We are all human, we all live on the same planet, how can we differ so much on something that could potentially affect the lives of OUR (being the ONE side) future generation? I mean, seriously, who, in their right mind, and I mean someone of rational, logical thinking, would think that putting chemicals in tanks underground along a waterfront is a good idea? In what dimension could that ever be a good idea? I will be honest and tell you that I have an immediate distrust for anyone who says they think it is a good idea.
Now, let’s look at Mayor Rob Ford. On paper, not including his personal life, he has been one of Toronto’s most successful mayors. He has implemented a lot of positive changes for the city WITHOUT gauging the tax-payers. A true coup if you ask me. But, then you have the whole hoopla about his private life. I am not supporting his faults or habits, but I do support his right to a private life. What he does in his private time is between himself, who his actions affect, his family and his maker. Who is anyone to judge his personal life?
“Let he who is without fault cast the first stone.”
As for his political career, that is open to any and all to opine about, but his personal life is none of anyone’s business but his own. I can’t help but ponder if all the energy that is used to hate him based on his personal life was used to further actual productive things that benefit ALL, such as holding our government more accountable, ensuring that our local governments are transparent or even that the perpetrators behind America’s bank bailouts be held accountable for their role in bankrupting our economy (http://money.cnn.com/news/specials/storysupplement/bankbailout/) (a person can dream…) we would feel a lot better about ourselves and OUR future. Evidence and consequence are the only true substance of any situation.
If there is a reaction to every action, let us try to focus on positive action. If every person did one good deed a day, each person would change 365 lives in a year.