Fandango’s Provocative Question #15 Redux

FPQ

I’m on vacation this week, so this is a repost of an earlier FPQ post from February 2019.

Each week I will pose what I think is a provocative question for your consideration. By provocative, I don’t mean a question that will cause annoyance or anger. Nor do I mean a question intended to arouse sexual desire or interest.

What I do mean is a question that is likely to get you to think, to be creative, and to provoke a response. Hopefully a positive response.

This week’s provocative question is based upon a quote by Bertrand Russell, the British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, writer, essayist, social critic, political activist, and Nobel laureate. Whew, that’s a lot of cred. Anyway, Russell, who died in 1970, suggested that…

“The fundamental cause of the trouble is that, in the modern world, the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubts.”

Do you concur with Mr. Russell’s perspective? Why or why not?

If you choose to participate, write a post with your response to the question. Once you are done, tag your post with #FPQ and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Or you can simply include a link to your post in the comments.

And most important, have fun.

Fandango’s Provocative Question #183

FPQ

Welcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question. Each week I will pose what I think is a provocative question for your consideration.

By provocative, I don’t mean a question that will cause annoyance or anger. Nor do I mean a question intended to arouse sexual desire or interest.

What I do mean is a question that is likely to get you to think, to be creative, and to provoke a response. Hopefully a positive response.

This week’s provocative question stems from some articles I’ve recently read about two new adaptations, one of The Lord of the Rings and the other of The Little Mermaid, which seem to be prompting deep outrage and indignation among fans who are arguing that the projects’ increased diversity has weakened their faithfulness to the original stories.

Amazon Prime’s new The Lord of the Rings: Rings of Power series first drew widespread anger from some fans because it casts black and Asian actors as characters across the spectrum of fictional Middle Earth races. Their chief complaint was that the decision to include non-white characters had ruined the authenticity of Tolkien’s world.

When Disney released the first trailer for its live-action remake of The Little Mermaid, featuring Halle Bailey as Ariel (above), thousands of YouTube users went nuts, leaving more than 2 million dislikes and countless derogatory comments on the trailer, and creating memes ridiculing the film for casting Bailey and mocking all of its supporters.

But wait. Hobbits, elves, orcs, and mermaids aren’t real, so should it matter what race they are? Is casting non-white actors in movies made from books or stories where the characters were presumed to be white disrespectful to the source material? Or is this backlash transparently racist.

So, with that as the background, here’s today’s provocative question for you.

Does diversity casting in TV shows or movies, where fictional characters who were presumed to be white in the source material are portrayed by non-white actors, concern or bother you? Why do you feel that way?

If you choose to participate, write a post with your response to the question. Once you are done, tag your post with #FPQ and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Or you can simply include a link to your post in the comments. But remember to check to confirm that your pingback or your link shows up in the comments.

Fandango’s Provocative Question #182

FPQ

Welcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question. Each week I will pose what I think is a provocative question for your consideration.

By provocative, I don’t mean a question that will cause annoyance or anger. Nor do I mean a question intended to arouse sexual desire or interest.

What I do mean is a question that is likely to get you to think, to be creative, and to provoke a response. Hopefully a positive response.

This week’s provocative question stems from a dialogue I had with fellow blogger Pete, aka Mister Bump, in the comments section of this post. My post was about the now politically incorrect phrase “Indian Giver.”

Pete commented that by avoiding the use of language that was once perfectly acceptable, “we are trying to erase it from history. Pretending it never happened as opposed to consciously making an effort to be better.” He added, “I have to say this is exactly the same issue as tearing down old statues. An attempt to pretend it never happened.”

My response to Pete’s comment about tearing down old statues was, “Statues are erected to honor the individuals they represent. Taking down a statue of someone who, say, was a traitor to his country, or who committed atrocities (e.g., slaughtered Native Americans) doesn’t erase those individuals from history. It removes the honor that is bestowed upon them in the form of a statue.”

Pete and I continued to go back and forth on this in the comments section of my post. I’m not going to repeat all of the comments herein, but I have provided a link to that post in a previous paragraph, so if you’re interested in reading that entire exchange, feel free to click on that link.

And that brings us to this week’s provocative question. Let me state that there is no animosity between Pete and me. We just respectfully disagreed on a particular matter, and that’s fine. So I’m not asking you if you to take sides or whether you agree with Pete or with me. I’m simply asking how you feel about this matter.

Do you feel that the removal of statues of historic figures whose deeds or actions are considered, from today’s perspective, to be inappropriate, offensive, objectionable, or even traitorous, is justified? Why do you feel that way?

If you choose to participate, write a post with your response to the question. Once you are done, tag your post with #FPQ and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Or you can simply include a link to your post in the comments. But remember to check to confirm that your pingback or your link shows up in the comments.

Fandango’s Provocative Question #181

FPQ

Welcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question. Each week I will pose what I think is a provocative question for your consideration.

By provocative, I don’t mean a question that will cause annoyance or anger. Nor do I mean a question intended to arouse sexual desire or interest.

What I do mean is a question that is likely to get you to think, to be creative, and to provoke a response. Hopefully a positive response.

It seems to me that a lot of people I talk with are not happy campers. Whether it’s due to an excessive heat wave, a severe drought, or raging wildfires — all of which we’re experiencing in my neck of the woods — or torrential rains, downpours, flooding, and flash floods in other parts of the country, people are upset.

And then there’s politics, where everyone has issues, no matter what side of the aisle you sit on. Social issues, ranging from abortion rights, LGBT rights, book bannings in schools, critical race theory, whitewashing history, antisemitism, FBI raids on Mar-a-Largo, or whatever, people are at each other’s throats.

Or maybe it’s just a general malaise people are feeling that things just aren’t the way we’d like them to be.

What I want to know is this…

How are you doing? Seriously, are you okay? Feeling good? Just okay? Not so great? Why do you think you’re feeling the way you are?

If you choose to participate, write a post with your response to the question. Once you are done, tag your post with #FPQ and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Or you can simply include a link to your post in the comments. But remember to check to confirm that your pingback or your link shows up in the comments.

Fandango’s Provocative Question #180

FPQ

Welcome once again to Fandango’s Provocative Question. Each week I will pose what I think is a provocative question for your consideration.

By provocative, I don’t mean a question that will cause annoyance or anger. Nor do I mean a question intended to arouse sexual desire or interest.

What I do mean is a question that is likely to get you to think, to be creative, and to provoke a response. Hopefully a positive response.

In the decade before I retired almost six years ago, I worked from home. I only went into the office about once a month at the most. And I loved working remotely. I had several headhunters contact me about potential job opportunities, but when I found out that they were office-based, I wasn’t interested.

I retired three years before the pandemic hit and sent a significant portion of office-based workers home. But it seems now that a growing number of employers are requiring, or are planning to require, employees to return to the “brick and mortar” offices to perform their jobs.

Companies like Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Apple, Google, and Twitter have or are trying to get employees back to working on-site. A May survey found that 76% of high up executives say in-person work is critical. And Elon Musk is demanding that Tesla workers return to the office full-time or quit.

This demand that employees head back to the office after nearly two years of working from home is a growing source of tension between employees and management. Some recent surveys show that millions of workers want to stay home and would likely quit their job rather than go back to a daily commute.

The most recent round of research from this month shows that among full-time wage and salary employees who are able to work remotely, more than three in ten said they wanted to do so five days per week. Only 16.8% of respondents said they would rather be in person pretty much all the time.

So my provocative question this week has to do with your thoughts on working from home versus going into the office everyday. If you’re retired, or if your job is one that can’t be done remotely, you might respond hypothetically, as in if you were not retired or if you had a job were you could potentially work remotely.

Have you ever worked from home as an alternative to going into a worksite to do your job? Would you prefer working from home or working from an office? If you have been able to work from home since the pandemic hit and are now being told that you have to return to showing up at the office everyday, how would you feel about that?

If you choose to participate, write a post with your response to the question. Once you are done, tag your post with #FPQ and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Or you can simply include a link to your post in the comments. But remember to check to confirm that your pingback or your link shows up in the comments.