Sunday, October 23, 2016

Positive Social Change and Diversity

Creativity and innovation depend upon diversity of thought. Diversity of thought follows from diversity of experience. If one is never forced to look at a familiar situation from a radically different perspective, it's much harder to appreciate the valid aspects of opposing points of view.

When there is no diversity, there is no change. no progress, no improvement. If you want to make the world a better place, you'd better embrace diversity. Whether you are looking to adapt through evolutionary change, or pursue a more radical, revolutionary change agenda, begin with your values, and then make your plans, and finally put your plans into action.

“The place to improve the world is first in one's own heart and head and hands, and then work outward from there.”Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values

I value diversity and am committed to challenging my own deeply held beliefs on a frequent basis. This political season is giving me plenty of opportunities to test just how open-minded I truly am.

Are you open-minded? Do you rigorously examine your own beliefs? I offer the following test. Visit the Facebook pages of each of the four presidential candidates. I have copied the links below. On each page, note how many of your friends have decided to follow each of them. My hypothesis is that the most open-minded people would have diversity in this measure, whereas the more closed-minded among us would tend to associate only with like-minded folks.

Here are the pages in alphabetical order by last name


In my case, only 13.7% of my Facebook friends had made such a declaration for a particular candidate. However, the distribution of those choices reflects something interesting about the diversity of my friends.

Here are the results, in descending order:

  • Clinton 47%
  • Trump 31%
  • Johnson 19%
  • Stein 3%

This post  has nothing to do with who I'll vote for, or who I think you should vote for. I believe you can search your heart and do your job on election day with no help from me. In fact, I am counting on it! Likewise, I am not in need of unsolicited partisan propaganda from others. I'll make up my own mind, thank you.

Rather, this post is about the relationship between positive social change and diversity. Do you value diversity? How do you demonstrate this value in the world?

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”Jim Rohn

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