Global hunger, global refugees, civil war, economic meltdowns, admissions scandals, climate change… all these headlines fade away before the latest crisis de jour: bagel slicing. What can we learn from the fight-to-the-death over how to slice a bagel:
1) Living in a virtual world leaves us incapable of distinguishing between real issues and non-events.
2) Our culture of reflexive objection spills over into every walk of life; we can’t pass by a bakery without finding something to argue over and complain about.
3) Our inability to solve real problems makes us passionate for trivialities; we can fight ferociously without fear of picking the wrong side.
4) Partisanship, polarization, and groupthink leave us intolerant of any position other than ours; if you disagree with me, you’re evil. The point of disagreement in irrelevant.
5) Tradition is important; so is out-of-the-box thinking. Each has its time and place.
Pass the cream cheese.