Tuesday, I am taking part in a telecom about moving beyond the all-too-prevelant "us/them" thinking in dialogue. It was started after thoughts brought up at BlogHer, and brought to fruition by Nancy White and Bill Anderson.
While "us/them" is oh-so-obvious in political diatribe currently ... (I cannot easily consider instances where I could honestly call what I experience dialogue or discussion), the same thinking extends beyond this to almost everything we deal as parts of our lives. Knowledge, understanding, perspective and age all inform who we are as individuals, yet we often project those experiences onto everyone we interact with, assuming that our lives are a common experience. And those projections separate us along lines of understanding.
So we will talking about ways to encourage discourse without discord; conversations with combativeness. I'm approaching this conversation with the rather simple concept of beginning by remembering THE GOLDEN RULE: Treat others as you want to be treated.
Seeing the list of participants, I think I will be representing the "little bloggers"... those of us who don't do this as an adjunct to a paying job or do this as a job. Those who share hobbies and the daily travails of life... who preface our political commentary with the warning: RANT... so the readers are warned and can choose to slide on by...
In this role, if there are points you wish me to bring up, please leave me a comment and I'll try to represent.