Logic Or Emotion?

We all use both logic and emotion in our lives every single day. In your opinion, is one more preferable to the other?

Share why if you wish.

Logic Or Emotion?

How Does Media Manipulate You?

It is easy to imagine how someone you disagree with might be manipulated by the media they consume. But how does your media manipulate you?

Frequently, I see people referred to as sheep. The implication is that they blindly follow whatever they hear. The person using the word “sheep”, however, would never fall for such obvious tricks. Or so they believe.


Related: Listen to the Intellectual Roundtable podcast where Michael and Lee discuss the question, ‘How much of our thoughts are our own?’ Stay tuned for a bonus question, ‘How much is enough?’


In reality, all news, opinion, and entertainment programs use many methods to get you to believe what they want you to believe. That might include word choice, music, on-screen text, sharing only one side of an argument, or even outright lies.

While it is easy to notice these flaws in the media outlets that don’t share your worldview, it is much harder to be critical of the media — newspaper articles, cable news, web sites, and so on — that you consume on a regular basis, and that you agree with.


Related: Here is a podcast episode with the question, ‘What beliefs do you have that might be wrong?’ We also discuss a second question, ‘What makes a place feel like home?’


Are you familiar with the rhetorical methods that are used to persuade? Do you recognize some of the behaviors that you condemn in others in your own choice of news? Can you recognize, in what you read or watch, an agenda being driven, even if you agree with that agenda? How does media manipulate you?

Related questions: How much of our thoughts are our own? How does your vocabulary influence how you think? What beliefs do you have that might be wrong? What deserves your attention?

Are You Free?

In the United States political world, there has been a lot of talk about being free lately. From owning guns to wearing masks to availability of abortions, one person’s freedom is another’s oppression.

A number of freedoms, or rights, are explicitly mentioned in the Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution. In particular, the first and second amendments, freedom of speech and the right to bear arms, respectively, are the most famous. Are efforts to keep protests safe limiting freedom of speech? Are all efforts at gun control an infringement of the Second Amendment?

In addition, there is also a fierce debate going on regarding voting rights, and both sides of the political divide feel that they are defending democracy. One side wants increased voting access to previously under-served communities; the other thinks that is an invitation to fraud.

At the heart of many of the ongoing arguments is that people, regardless of their political affiliation or socioeconomic standing, feel their freedoms slipping away.


Related: Listen to an episode of the Intellectual Roundtable Podcast, where we discuss the questions ‘Freedom or security?’ and ‘Is technology neutral?’


Not to mention the vanishing of privacy in the age of social media. Similarly, our personal information is becoming more available to corporations. Credit card companies, for example, know more about us than many of us realize. Cell phones allow us to be tracked wherever we go.

On a personal level, how do you feel about freedom? Are you free? Do you feel free? Are your freedoms threatened, and what can be done to strengthen them?

Related questions: Freedom or security? What are you doing to make the world a better place? Personal rights or convenience? How can we encourage debate?

What Role Do Sports Play In Our Society?

People like sports. Whether you play them yourself, or watch your favorite team or athlete, there is probably some sports in your life.

Certainly, there is no denying the popularity. The Super Bowl is consistently one of the highest rated television moments each year. Professional sports are billion dollar enterprises. You may have a jersey or a cap in your closet.

However, other than simple popularity, where do they fit in our society? Is it simple entertainment? Is the identity of a city or a community defined by professional athletes playing a game?

In addition, what sort of responsibility do athletes have to a community? Should they get involved in political issues, or should they simply play the game they are paid for?

Some communities believe that a professional sports franchise is an economic engine, producing jobs and bringing fans with disposable income to a downtown area. Others might describe a team as a financial burden, often extracting tax breaks from a city or county and keeping the majority of income generated for itself. Can both be true?

Sports are important to fans around the world. Some of the most powerful multi-national organizations are sports teams or leagues, and individual athletes are are some of the most recognizable people on the planet.

Ultimately, what is it that these teams provide to us? What role do sports play in our society?

Related questions: What is your favorite sport? Why is it better to watch a sporting event live rather than recorded? Why do people like games? What makes a community?