Without even viewing the whole film, I feel validated about not watching popular "news" shows in our house. This news-avoidance lifestyle is not the result of a Pollyanna approach to life. It is a conscious decision to base my beliefs and knowledge on what I see with my own eyes, experience in my own life, and hear from friends and family and those who see and experience themselves, who I trust to honestly share their lives.
I don't want to be told what to believe by people who just talk without firsthand knowledge. How did they get their information? Did they experience it themselves? See it with their own eyes? Triple-check their sources?
Maybe they are simply
This is what I know to be true. I see people of all races and beliefs working and living together every day, without threat of violence. I have friends and family members of homosexual orientation who live and love and work, with the same ups and downs as heterosexual relationships, the downs exacerbated by outside criticism and prejudice. I see policemen doing their jobs in a professional manner, and have witnessed those who didn't. I have friends who have been racially profiled, and I have been the minority in social situations. I look at the voting records for politicians in both major parties, and see those on both sides who vote--and don't--the way I'd like them to. I have experienced warmer winters, drought, and flood-like conditions, more so in the last decade than I remember (and I know where to look up those records, should memory fail me).
I have worked with children whose families were struggling to make ends meet on minimum-wage jobs, who were not sporting the latest iPhone or brand-new cars bought with welfare checks. I have been sexually harassed, and have friends who have been sexually assaulted. I have seen gang graffiti in my quiet neighborhood, and heard parents talk about where their kids were scoring drugs. I have seen a house burn down, just down the block, when there are two fire stations within a five minute drive.
I have seen beggars at the walls of the Sistine Chapel, the clean and not-so-clean streets of major cities in Europe, the results of universal healthcare and education in other countries. I have worked in schools with over sixty percent free and reduced lunch recipients, and at a school with one percent of the same. I am keenly aware of the differences between the two.
These things I have seen with my own eyes, heard with my own ears, felt with my own heart. What I don't personally know, I prefer to learn by listening to and reading about those who have experienced it themselves--people who have lived and explored lives foreign to me, not just those sitting in front of a camera and conjecturing.