If I am asked what the problem is with Palestinians... I would have a totally different view than many. Forget the conflict, the bombings and the fighting between Fateh and Hamas. I think our problem is debate, or rather, the lack of.
The idea first came up to me, as the news of Saddam's execution spread. People had different views about the issue, the majority were against his execution. I was hoping that among the things people would start discussing, they would discuss the legitmacy of capital punishment. It was so relevant a debate in that context when so many people opposed its application in this case. The question that kept going on in my head is why this has not let way for the development of a debate on the punishment in general rather than limiting it to speaking only on its execution in this particular case.
I figured that we have a real problem with debate: the art of practicing a civilised discussion when two sides disagree. I tried to follow the discussions that went on regarding the execution, it just amased me how people managed to allows get into discussion where each side was only asserting (and literally repeating) the views of the other side. My attempted interventions trying to play the devil's advocate were dismissed instantly by both speakers who would go on to praise the similarities they share.
Someone should start a culture of civilised discussion here, maybe not only here but throughout the Arab world. It is not that we are not civilised, but we are to polite to disagree, that's why we always pass everything by consesus. This is one thing we should change. This, would change a lot in us!

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