The Internet: A Venue for Increased Understanding?

I once had the assignment to create a series of topics for globally-minded individuals to debate. This was one of my favorites: The Internet has Led to Increased Understanding Across Cultures I’ve managed to steer clear of the Duck Dynasty quicksand, but then I read this article from the New Civil Rights Movement. In this sermon, Robertson seems to advise men to marry young women. According to this reality TV star, 20 is too old for a woman to be a good wife. By then, apparently, women will want to do more than cook and carry a bible.

Disclaimer: As of 6:33 pm CST no one from Duck Dynasty or A&E has commented on this. However, it has been run by several reputable sites, so I am operating under the impression the video is what it seems to be. This example shows the richness of my debate topic because it could support both pro and con arguments.

At first glance, I would use this example as con. It doesn’t seem that either side was willing to give in and I have yet to find an example of anyone truly seeking a different point of view. This includes me. I know where I stand. I was appalled by these statements. So, there is a clear argument that no, the internet has not helped. Already, Robertson’s previous sermons have surfaced, drawing more criticisms to his fundamentalist ideology.

Technology has led to a world where anyone who has ever recorded this man speak now has the opportunity to review it and highlight anything controversial. My instinct is that there will be a lot of that. He’s not afraid to give his opinion and he’s not interested in pretending to change it for the sake of a TV show.

But I think it’s healthy to argue with myself. And I have to point out that the ferreting out previous sermons is a resourceful way to find out more about what Phil Robertson stands for. And, to be blunt, what some people in America believe in.

I am also intrigued by how many progressive, urban people watch Duck Dynasty. Clearly, this show does not only appeal to those who see eye-to-eye with Phil Robertson. And while I don’t agree with the views Phil Robertson has been espousing, members of  the Duck Dynasty clan are smart and highly educated. And clearly, they have mass appeal.

With the internet shining a bright and critical spotlight on the Duck Dynasty crew, I can’t help but go back and forth as to whether or not it increases understanding across cultures, in this case, different cultures within America. Like many things, it depends on the motivations of the audience.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *