Sunday, November 21, 2004

Anne Frank faces reality

The teenager from Mosul who posts A Star from Mosul is getting politicized, as we used to say in the sixties. She is losing her innocence as the next wave of the war washes over her home. She cannot escape and no amount of effort on the part of her parents can keep her safe from getting polarized.

She has been in conversation with her father and after what she describes as a "long discussion" offers what may be the clearest picture of the situation by classifying an amorphous group usually reported as "insurgents" into four easy to understand categories.

Her analysis strikes me as sensibly as any that I have read. I recall reading something similar a couple of weeks back, I think by Shannon Love but I'm not sure. [Update: It was Shannon Love. Link.] Anyway, in the end she notes that the "comments" section to her blog is being inactivated. She has pleaded with readers not to fight among themselves, so this is the only tool she las left. She links to another forum that is dedicated to such argumants.

She ends with this wistful note.

A star from Mosul: Let the confusion begin!: "I was reading yesterday before going to sleep, a book that has collection of scientific subjects and stories in English.. When I decided to stop, I thought of taking a look at what I'll read in the coming days. There was a sentence that attracted me and rang a bell in my head, it says:
'Have you heard of the man who swam halfway across the ocean, then decided he couldn't make it and swam back?'..

God, I wish I won't hear about him, not in this life!!"

This post is worth reading and remembering. It is fairly long, but well organized.
I believe it is also written from the heart. I may be the one being fooled by some sinister plot in cyberspace sending out misleading propoganda like the Russians did all those years, but I don't think so.

Unfortunately, the internet seems to reflect social structure at large in a very human way. There is an old saying about birds of a feather flocking together. It is a very human quality to want to be among others with whom we agree and who will support and stroke us when we say what we believe. The phenomenon has been called "cocooning" in the blogosphere. It is reflected in the blogrolls of most weblogs, although many of these lists do link to what they might consider "opposite" viewpoints, but mainly to be used as a fishing pool from which to cherry-pick tidbits of oppositional content that can be fisked.

I guess that ends my Sunday morning rant.
Have a good day.

No comments: