Friday, June 5, 2009

My Gut Says Maybe

I'm one of nature's mediators. I have strong opinions, I guess, though I tend to mostly state them for comic effect. So, I have strong opinions that are silly. Or, I feel self conscious about the opinions and state them comically. Either way, this puts me in the position of being in the middle. I'm not fond of extreme ideas and opinions, especially about what other people should do or think. I like leaving people alone to think up things. I don't hate anyone, for being different, or for supporting this or that. I can see both sides of issues, and tend to fall in the middle. This is a strange and unpopular position. I don't even like it myself. But, naturally, I can see why I end up there.

Political stuff usually puts me in the most hot water, if I let myself get drawn into discussions. Mostly I don't. But if I do, the person invariably starts talking about how the Democrats are tax and spend maniacs looking to control our minds with government funding. And the Republicans are gun toting redneck racists. I smile and nod, because I can see where people get all of these ideas. At the same time, I can also see that I like roads and schools, so I don't mind taxes. (Of course it was Republican Oliver Wendell Holmes who said you buy civilization with taxes, which I appreciate.) And I don't think you can legislate morality and want people to leave me alone, so I see why people vote Republican. I'm frightened of the libertarians, and almost as confused by the socialists as they themselves seem to be. I don't hate and fear the government, but I don't put too much faith in it either. I'm an Ursula LeGuin anarchist, meaning I appreciate the theoretical basis and the principals of mutual aid, and remain skeptical of politicians.

I don't find many who are natural mediators. Actually, when I have dared this conversation with people, I usually get the response, "Oh that means you are [whatever I am]!" I don't like that, because it is partly true, but it is mostly false. Sure, it does mean I can see how people arrive at their conclusions, and I'm interested in why they think what they think. But I don't support their point of view. I don't think what they think in important ways. To paraphrase Homer Simpson, I do not wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

This is why I avoid the conversation. I like that there are all kinds of people in the world. I like the tapestry, the warp and weave of the universe. I don't want people to be punished for anything they are or think, and too many belief systems come down to a limitation of imagination. The universe is here. It is real, it exists. It doesn't need your support or belief, and it is perfect. I don't mean this in a hippie "there's no right or wrong dude!" way, because that is a poor way to run a society. There are ways to harm people, to make life miserable, and we need to stand up to people trying to promulgate hate and evil. But people just living their lives, being basically decent neighbors, don't need to think like you. Listening to each other can have great benefits, and other ways of approaching situations can help us approach our own. That's what I'm saying.

See? I'm mediating again. I can't help it.

1 comment:

xmiyux said...

Well mediators are in fact needed. It is definitely not my strong point.