My opinion on opinion pieces

After reading the letters to the editor on Oregonlive.com, I reflected on how people present their arguments. Some people make complete sense, others make no sense at all. Some things we can embrace and understand where they are coming from, others are foreign to us – mostly because we lack knowledge about what they are talking about (or perhaps they lack knowledge about what they are talking about). For example, I listened to a story yesterday on NPR about the Gaza Strip.

First, I must tell you about my ignorance. I had no idea where the Gaza Strip is located or that it is home to the 1.5 million Palestinians – 1 million of those are refuges according to Wikipedia. I knew there was a holy war and there are bombings happening nearly everyday. I also knew Obama and Clinton recently attempted peace talks between the two nations. Some how I got in my head that the Gaza Strip was like an airbase. But that is not true.

It is a coastal area 51 km long, just south of Tel Aviv (see map) on the Mediterranean Sea. The Israeli women interviewed on NPR lives and Tel Aviv and rarely thinks of the fighting happening just up the beach from her. If people in Tel Aviv rarely think of it, people in other countries are oblivious (like me). This Israeli woman has a Palisentian friend in Gaza, but she expressed her hatred for the Palisentians because of their religion and the killing they conduct. The sound of the hatred in her voice was so powerful. To hate someone because of religion seems completely ridiculous to me.

To be conscientious of other people’s lives across the globe, one must be aware of their situations. Do you think people with higher levels of conscientiousness are more tolerant of diversity in ethnicity and religion?

Read or listen to the story about Mohammad and Dana on NPR: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=129602459

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