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Thursday Cannon Fodder: consider this

Dhaka University Reopens The Central Library Photo credit should read Maruf Rahman / Eyepix Group/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

I was going to write today’s CF about the deputy communications director for Qatar 2022 who was arrested, as he claims, for refusing to help distance the organizers from the claims of horrific human rights violations leveled against them by migrant workers and watchdog groups. That story mirrors the recent disappearance of Chinese tennis star and former world #1 player Peng Shuai, whose whereabouts are unknown after she accused the former vice premier, with whom she had an affair, of sexually assaulting her. China is set to host the winter Olympics in February 2022.

They are both significant stories, resting at the crossroads between sports, that thing we love so much, and the larger societal issues that are inexorably linked with them, even when we’d prefer they not be / we’d like to ignore them. You may remember from my previous CF posts that I like to focus on that nexus.

But I’m not going to today. I haven’t been able to give enough thoughtful consideration to what I’d like to say nor have I had time to properly educate myself on the stories. And that’s okay. In the world of 265 characters and 30 second sound bites, we’re expected to have an opinion and a take on everything, pretty much immediately.

Thoughtful consideration is important. Saying, “I don’t know enough to have a useful opinion, let me get back to you,” is a valid and mature response. Taking a few hours or even a few days to let an issue and your opinions about it marinate often leads to more intelligent, nuanced, and useful dialogue. It’s even okay to *gasp* not have a take on something. I might write about those two particular stories down the road. I might not. Both of those are fine and valid decisions.