Harry Shearer is a funny guy. I loved him in The Right Stuff as the bungling recruiter of astronauts and in other parts he's played through the years.
Shearer is also a bright guy, one with lots of opinions, some of which he expresses on The Huffington Post.
Today, he talked about his ideas on rebuilding the lives of those victimized by Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. I have some other ideas, which I talked about in the comments to Shearer's post.
I could be wrong. Shearer could be right.
(And I hasten to add that these are my ideas. I can't and don't claim that they have the imprimatur of God on them, just because I'm a pastor.)
But apparently I said something "wrong." Or, I was perceived as having said something wrong. One commenter claimed I was completely lacking in compassion.
Shearer himself accused me of being an "American," by which he meant that I had no sense of history or appreciation of the cultural heritage of New Orleans. He also called me a "global warming-determinist," though I had never mentioned global warming.
What interests me about this discussion is that it conforms to the very sort of discourse I so hate to see in the political world these days. If someone advances a nuanced argument that doesn't conform to the usual stereotypes and conventions of accepted political belief, then somebody feels compelled to shove it into a known--and disdained--box. It's easier to do that than to actually think.
You might want to read the discussion here.