Monday, October 12, 2009

In pursuit of a world view

There are three thought threads I need to braid together here before calling it a day:
  1. the question on NPR at noon today, "Does Obama deserve the Nobel Prize for Peace"
  2. school conferences for our 4th grader, and
  3. our metro newspaper
It has been fascinating listening to the arguments and points of view about our President receiving the Nobel Prize for Peace.

What has become very clear is that many Americans are completely devoid of a world perspective. For some reason, those uninformed old-country folks from halfway around the world had the audacity to make a decision about the Peace Prize without consulting with the American people. (Never mind that in any group of 20 individuals you are likely to have 23 opinions.)

Isn't it interesting that we Americans, who know nothing about political, economic or social matters in our closest neighboring countries, feel free to fault the Nobel Committee in it's decision. We, who know nothing about the world at large, simply don't grasp the fact people in other countries know a lot about us, care about what happens in this country, and are deeply influenced by the decisions made here. Our President matters as much to the rest of the world as he does to Americans.

In reading our paper, I noticed that there was an equal amount of space dedicated to national and international news as was dedicated to the comics. Actually, when you took out the advertising, the comics had more column inches. There were 13 pages dedicated to Sports, and less than two pages for comics and barely over a page to national and international stories.

Is it any wonder that when I told a group of people having lunch at work that we were taking our graduating senior to Italy that I was asked, "Why would you do a thing like that?"

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