It's a very common team building exercise. The group gets divided into three or four classifications: giants, trolls, dwarves, and elves or some variant. The rules are simple. Some races have to run away from you some go after you. The objective is to capture everybody and bring everybody in the same wedge of the playing field. The end result is pretty predictable. After three or so rounds no one wins. And then the group facilitator has everybody huddle up and talk about real life applications. People throw out ideas like "we have to all be unified," or " we all need to know and fully utilize the rules."
I suppose if a group had a skewed enough dispersion of athletic ability maybe one team might win but it's supposed to be one of those impossible games meant to teach lessons rather than to be won. I remember playing the game at a student government summer retreat. I started running around with everybody else but then in the second round it dawned on me: the group facilitator had said the objective was to have everybody inside the same wedge of the playing field, not necessarily my wedge of the field. I yelled a halt and remarkably people did stop and listened. We all moved into the same wedge because now everyone understood that to win, we needed to stop pretending in trying to fulfill some role and solve the problem right in front of us: just get everybody in the same space.
Over the past couple of years, I have felt an increasing unease with the way we interact with each other. People get slandered or cut down because they don't believe the right thing or don't profess to think the right way. Some people make a big show out of "unfriending" friends because of differing opinions or thoughts. I've fought that mentality in myself and have never unfriend friends though I know many have unfriended me probably because they assume they know my kind. I'm one of those liberal socialists trying to take away your guns, aborting babies, celebrating same-sex marriages, and taking your hard earned money to feed the tax machine. The sad part about it is there are just as hurtful labels put on the right as well: you're conservative red necks who'd let the whole country go up in a blaze of oil drilling glory while shooting off your automatic rifles from on the backs of the poor and immigrants.
Let's face it, though, folks. We all want the same thing. We all want to be loved, we all want to feel successful. I think deep down, we all want to make the world safer, better, and more peaceful if not for everybody around us at least certainly for our family and friends. There's a reason why we call people who don't have those ideals sociopaths. They are anti-civilization.
I don't expect a whole lot will come out of this post but sometimes I feel so helpless. At least this message might reach a few thoughtful people who might give it a moment of reflection before "liking" or leaving the conversation. Because we are facing some earth shattering dilemmas: wars, terrorism, shootings, bombings, freak weather, starvation, droughts, genocide and so much more. There is absolutely no way we can win these exquisitely challenging battles for humanity unless all of the pro social humanity is in the same space, willing to suspend whatever political or ideological roles we feel we are playing for the sake of winning these fights. I challenge everybody reading this to pause an extra second before responding to that feed or posting that meme or unfriending that friend and answer this question for yourself: Will this help us solve the world's problems together? Give it a try. I'd love to hear of experiences good or bad in testing this out.