New technology has brought us the means to communicate with others at a speed just short of astounding.
Today Facebook and other social media, based on the web, allow us to be in touch with many more people with far less effort than we could in the past. While it brings out a good amount of thoughtful and sometimes witty comment, it also gives insight into the odd way some view the world.
Don Cherry giving Ron McLean a bad time over McLean’s enjoyment of a seal burger stimulated reactions well in excess of what was warranted. Cherry and McLean were having a bit of fun with each other and the viewing audience. Those who felt compelled to comment either lack a sense of humour or view life with an inordinate amount of seriousness. The classic comment came from the Hon. Leona Aglukkaq who saw Cherry’s comments as an insult to the Inuit people. That is a large stretch even in the world of political correctness. It is most likely that any Inuit people aware of his comments just chuckled and mentally wrote it off as one more dumb comment from a southerner who doesn’t have a clue about what he is talking about. Newsworthy, not really, it was just something to fill in space on a slow news day.
The drenching of a street person in Vancouver by a Tim Horton’ employee was more newsworthy than the discussion over seal burgers.
The first question that comes to mind is why didn’t the witness use her mobile telephone to call the police rather than calling a radio station? It was an assault on an individual and more appropriately handled by the police than the news media. It raises some question as to the values the caller has and how seriously were they concerned about the well-being of the street person involved.
The suggestion that we should all boycott the company for the act of an individual with that company also is based on faulty logic. To punish all the employees over the actions of one employee indicates an imbalance between honest social conscience and a somewhat perverse personal logic. It is similar to hearing about one teenager stealing a car and taking it for a ride and then assuming all teenagers are car thieves. It does not compute.
That said, the individual reporting the incident at least has the personal courage and conviction to take some action to bring the situation to light. It is very probable that the incident with the street person was witnessed by many others who just quietly disappeared. Someone was good enough not to be a selfish and cowardly person when they witnessed a situation that they felt should be exposed.
Every society survives by having a common core of values we all believe is appropriate and fair. Without that common core of beliefs our society would fall into a state of total chaos.
We have a duty to speak out when we see something that is inappropriate. What we have to try to avoid is taking well-intended action that is inappropriate.