TED Conversations

Grace Fleming

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I would like to hear people's perspectives about an inherent lack of respect in our culture, and how we can teach transcendence of such?

One could argue hate, war, and crime which have gone on for centuries are manifestations of man's same "dark" side, but are we merely using disrespect as weakened versions of our other sides, and is there a way to transcend it? Perhaps try to bring back a non gender specific form of chivalry, as an example? What has happened to human interaction as a result of so much of us relying on social media, and will this be a contributing factor to the demise of our sense of connection that leads to further devolution of our societal mores, or just plain manners?


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    May 30 2012: Respect seems to be becoming a rare human expression because we are becoming more self centered.
    In most cases, we dont really care about the 'other', that is: other cultures, other religions, other ideas, other nations, other way of doing things.
    The world is turning to a place of 'my way or nothing else' while successfully presenting a front of being a 'global village', or being more democratic.
    Social media has provided more opportunities for sharing information and knowing more about other areas of the world that would not have been heard of without it. But it has not cured humanity of selfishness, avarice, pride and other vices that has always plagued interpersonal relationships. For example, the online community could rant and rave about someone like Joseph Kony for days; but do they really care about the Ugandan people? Or is it just an attempt to go with twitter's trends?
    Interpersonal relationships blossoms when there is emphaty and tolerance.
    Now there are war of words online! Some people want homosexuals to be destroyed; some people want the Jews wiped out; some people think the US is the 'great Satan'; some people think Middle East women must be like European/American women in order to be 'emancipated'; some people want Europe to get rid of all 'foreigners'.
    In Nigeria,some people have learnt how to make bombs from the web, and now suicide bombings are weekly news.
    With social media, human relationships have become superficial: now most people think they can help some Malian girl being traffiked for slavery, or a Nigerian girl being forced to marry a man twice her father's age, by clicking 'like' on a facebook page. Sometimes we mistake the online world for the real world. Or social media could create an illussion of change when actually no change is taking place.
    Yes, social networks has numerous advantages, recently it has been instrumental to the overthrow of dictators; but it can never replace the old-fashioned touch and presence of a fellow human being.
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      May 30 2012: I cannot remember where I read this case in the last week or so, but I agree that the internet makes communication among diverse groups easier than ever, but it also makes it easier to band together in groups onf people who reenforce each others prejudices. Perhaps it was the article Big Think ran in the last week about what the author called Neo-tribalism.
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        Jun 3 2012: it has it's pro's and cons. I think though we would be better off using the telephone and embracing face to face in person relationships like it use to be. It's healthier mentally and physically. If it were a pay service there would be far less negativity on facebook if u get my drift. The government being able to listen to us is good in someways, and not so good in others. I have dialed back my usage for personal reasons...just need to get out more, my husband of 14 years passed and, well, u understand. I have a website if u care to check it out. http://www.maryrondoni.com Have a good Sunday. God Rocks.

        p.s. i didn't proofread, lol.

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