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Saturday April 27, 2013
By NG BEI SHAN firstname.lastname@example.org
I remember vividly a message that my high school teacher conveyed about a decade ago. “When you are pointing fingers at others, three of your fingers are directed to yourself.”
Finding fault in others is probably a much easier task compared with throwing something back at one’s self. How often do we find ourselves in conversations whereby the amount of criticism overshadows the slew of constructive ideas that were shared? It is also interesting to observe how people are easily attracted to such comments and even hype up topics that usually involves the scrutiny of others’ gaffes.
Especially in some of the heated general election campaign speeches and talks, finger-pointing is apparent to a certain extent and it’s overdone. It is almost odd to see or hear speakers not take a dig the blunder of their rivals or even thrash them.
That makes me wonder, why can’t candidates talk about what they could offer or spread the pro bono ideas they have in order to persuade people to vote for them? What good could sabotaging others do to win influence?
A friend differed.
“How appealing can a talk that’s loaded with just facts and numbers be? They need to stir people’s sentiments!”
He was probably right. Emotions are powerful and often overrule logic and rationale. Some times, the fiercer some speakers are, the louder the applaud they received.
Another friend pointed out. “Of course they have to do that to win the contest.”
That makes me wonder again. There are positive and negative emotions but it seems that the latter creates a greater impact.
Could that possibly be the reason why some would go all the way to mar others?
In the song Judge not, Bob Marley sang: “I know I’m not perfect and I don’t live to be, so before you point fingers, make sure your hands are clean.”
I would be totally disappointed to see if finger-pointing is the only weapon a candidate has. As a voter, I expect to choose a leader who is capable of strategising, planning, executing and solving problems, not just someone who can talk big.
If all the person can do is point fingers or belittle his or her opponent, talk is not only cheap, it is also toxic.
As entertaining as some speeches that poke fun of others could be, I definitely look forward to hearing talks that impress me intellectually.
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