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Friday, 23 May 2014

Try drawing this Venn diagram...

I watched the new X-Men movie yesterday. This isn't going to be a review of that movie; but I'm going to look at one idea that the movie centred around. And it was quite interesting; because you'd think, that because it was dealing with time travel and such, it'd be talking about Fate, and whether you can really change history, (ala Oedipus) and all that jazz. And they do have one good scene for that - but what they do instead is pay gratis to that idea, but continue on with the one they want to focus on, which I think is really good to see.

That is the idea that one person's action can change the world; therefore, be the best of yourself. The latter is the bit they really focus on, but without the former it wouldn't be there. It's basically taken for granted, because that's established right at the beginning. But the idea is particularly that if you're part of a group (e.g. mutants), and you do something that shows the worst of you, people are going to think the worst of your group, not just you.

Thankfully, these days, there's a few more people realising that people just do stupid things sometimes, because they're people. But there is still a heck of a lot of group attribution going back. The problem is, though, which group do you attribute it to? Every person is part of dozens of society groups - their actions could be impacted by any one, or multiple of them.

I, for example, am a human, a male, a young adult, an older brother, a first child, a Christian, a musician, an actor, a writer, an ex-uni student, a churchgoer, a choir member, a youth group leader, a sound desk operator, a Macarthur Anglican School alumnus, a Narellan resident, an Australian, a New South Welshman - and that's just the ones I can come up with off the top of my head.

But, even with so many possibilities, we can often attribute things people do to particular areas, because of our bias. (Unless they're a politician; in which case we often just say they're stupid.) Religion is a popular one. Political affiliation, sometimes. But hey - maybe it's because they're a Dad. Maybe it's because of the uni they went to. Or the mentor they had. Or maybe they've just had a rough day/month/year/life.

People are people. We can try to be the best of ourselves; but we won't always be. And you'll see that. It's your call as to how you decide to respond.

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