Seth Rogen recently announced that he was not going to follow through with a scheduled series of interviews on Sirius Radio because Steve Bannon was just added to the line up of a channel (I believe) called The Patriot with his own regular show.
I hesitate to categorize Seth, as I have not really followed him or reviewed any previous political statements.
But for the purposes of this quick post, I think it’s reasonably safe to assume he is a pretty left-wing progressive.
I don’t mean to single Mr. Rogen out. He’s certainly not alone. But it was, after all, his Sirius announcement on Twitter that prompted my comments here.
It seems Seth is essentially saying that because he doesn’t approve of what another contributor says/stands for/believes/represents that he, himself, will not contribute his own voice.
This is part of a theme in my opinion on the Left.
Confronted by ideas or opinions or ideologies with which they strongly disagree, there is a knee-jerk reaction to REDUCE the conversation instead of EXPANDING it.
We see a wave of efforts to shut down (at the moment) conservative voices. There are groups who rejoice in organizing campaigns to boycott sponsors and ‘pull the plug’ of ideological opponents. College students gnash their teeth and light stuff on fire rather than allow interested attendees to listen (SIMPLY LISTEN) to invited guest speakers with views deemed, by them, unworthy of voicing.
Remember when we used to debate topics? We would debate in our lecture halls, we would debate on barstools, we would debate on television shows.
There are whole slices of the population that have no interest in debate anymore.
They choose instead to surround themselves with people who feel and think like they do. They have no interest in defending their point of view, but they are certain that yours is flawed. So flawed in fact that you shouldn’t be allowed to share it with anyone. Because if you shared your vile point of view with someone who disagrees with you, then they’d be put in the position of expressing and possibly defending their own point of view. And we’ve already established that we don’t want to do that. We would rather rest safely in the nest we’ve build out of like voices.
As someone who loves to talk, discuss, argue, and debate, I think it’s a real shame and a real loss for today’s young adults.
We seem to be teaching them that you don’t need to inform yourself about your beliefs, you don’t need to strengthen your evidence and arguments, and that simply believing that you are right and the other person is wrong is enough.
We are failing our youth by allowing them to ‘dumb’ themselves down.
If you are so certain of the validity of your position, then you should be willing, able, and usually eager to defend it forcefully and with strong well thought out points.
We are all losing something here.
When the instint is to shut other people up, or take your microphone and go home, then how can any discussion move forward?
If you truly believe that your point of view is virtuous and someone else’s is vile, shouldn’t you be trying to convince and sway them. Shouldn’t you be using your voice to effect positve change in the direction you feel is the right one? Especially if you are a celebrity that choose to take a public position. Either keep your opinions to yourself or use your visibility to lift your end of the canoe.
Seth Rogen is an entertainer. He’s competing for consumer and advertiser dollars just like everyone else. Everyone has (and should forever keep) the choice to choose their own radio channel, their own TV program, and their own movie.
I don’t mean this post to come off quite as critical as it may to some.
My main point is simply: ADDING to any discussion is preferable to TAKING AWAY from it.