The American Bubble

I was just on Twitter and tweeting with @marksandlin about my new Moroccan friend. He is Muslim. This is a great thing.

The problem is that I feel there are not many others in the US who would dare make a friend like mine because we live in such a bubble.

I have seen all too often, especially within the church-going crowd, the inability (unwillingness) to think or communicate outside of a preconstructed set of “approved” topics.

Like God, Jesus, supporting the military, prayer, gossip, how to “spread the good news” with unbelievers…

What would be so wonderful to see is active promotion of learning about others. How to make friends, across any perceived boundary. Education about our fellow brothers & sisters of all religions across the world, discussions encouraging engagement with those you are unfamiliar with. And NOT for purposes of conversion. Simply for learning that people-real human beings like ourselves- live outside of our American Bubble.

Our society is being homogenized. Our environments are changing and are looking so similar. Suburbs! Yeesh! The information we receive is localized, yet still homogenized by formatting and language. Celebrities, gossip, sports, weather. Nevermind the atrocities going on all over the world! We feel so safe in our bubble. Nothing can harm us. We consume our daily lives without thought for much more than our own busy schedules. We complain about gas prices & the economy. We bicker about which candidate is best while insulting anyone who disagrees. We excite in the little dramas each day brings. All the while being distracted from our own government’s doings to strip away our rights… At least by laws murky with vague definitions and references to other laws long-ago passed.

So we are blind to much of the rest of the world. The major news networks are owned and controlled by people who want us in the dark. It’s much easier to fool & control us when we’re blind to reality.

Being in our bubble hurts us. Beyond not understanding our own government, we don’t know about the world. So when we need help, no other nation will want to help because we are self-righteous, ignorant gluttons! We routinely involve ourselves (militarily) in others nations’ business. We end up killing millions of innocent civilians. Then we pack up and go somewhere else, ignoring the consequences of our entitled invasions.

We need to pop the bubble and get real with ourselves. We are no better than any other nation, even for all our proclamations otherwise. We often destroy under the guise of assisting. We appear as ignorant buffoons by not expanding our world knowledge. We inhibit our opportunities to engage in the possibility of a peaceful world.

It’s time to learn and listen. Get out of the bubble. Pick a continent. Learn 10 things about the people who call it home. Find someone who lives there. Reach out and make a friend. Listen to them. Learn from them. Don’t argue. Accept that their life, beliefs, and views of the world are valid. Accept them, just as they are. Share what you think you know about their culture. Ask if you are right. If you are not, ask them to teach you. Apologize for not being accurate & be eager to be corrected. Then tell your friends about your new acquaintance from another land.

It’s fun.

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