Georgia Straight: Diversity and tolerance outweigh idiocy on-line



Georgia Straight:  Diversity and tolerance outweigh idiocy on-line


As part of the Georgia Straight's contribution to the Think Vancouver
theme of Diversity, Technology writer Dave Watson checks out websites
that are pro-diversity, as opposed to racist hate-mongering rant
sites.  He does a good job finding Asian Canadian webzines such as
Ricepaper or the Asian American Web zine Jade.  Watson even checks out Canadian heritage websites too. 

There's even a cartoon of a male dressed in kilt, sporran, wooden clogs and a turban.  Hmmm… doesn't look like anybody “we” know.

But somehow he missed the weblogs such as www.gunghaggisfatchoy.com  or Susanna Ng's
Chinese in Vancouver BC – Chinese Canadian news, stats or Asian Canadian writer Alexis Keinlen and her writing blog, or my friend Jeff Chiba Stearns who created the award winning animation short :

Check out Dave Watson's story
Diversity and tolerance outweigh idiocy on-line

Once in a while, a story hits the traditional media about some nasty
hate-mongering Web site hanging out there in cyberspace where young
people or other impressionable minds could find it. It’s true that such
things do get established, but it seems to me that they’re greatly
eclipsed by the number of sites that either actively promote tolerance
or provide a forum where people within an ethnic group can discuss
common problems (and people from outside the group can drop by and
learn something). And then there are all those self-selected
communities that are based on some kind of shared interest (a TV show,
author, hobby, job at McDonald’s, or whatever) and thus are usually
colourblind.

All of these on-line venues provide opportunities
for communication and challenging preju?dices, a means for people to
meet mind to mind on neutral ground. It’s difficult to dislike someone
retroactively on some generalized, arbitrary basis when you’ve already
considered or accepted one of their opinions. Communicating via the
Internet also frees people up from their herd instinct (the tendency to
follow the dominant personality in the room) because typing your
thoughts focuses you down into yourself.

Sure, some people are
too weak-minded to develop their own thoughts, and they simply parrot
the opinions of whoever last influenced them, while others have no
capacity to analyze or challenge their prejudices and have to seek out
similarly close-minded people in order to reinforce their beliefs, but,
in general, people who are smart enough to use the Internet have the
potential to learn new things. Here, then, are a few Web sites that
might prove useful for that purpose.

read more Diversity and tolerance outweigh idiocy on-line

Check out these websites on Chinese Canadian History that I list on www.gunghaggisfatchoy.com


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