Bias under the shield of fairness and Asian desserts (アジアの甘みと一方的な告発を鵜呑みにする人)

DragonI never took to Cendol, a bowl of sweet cold coconut milk soup with strips of green jellies, but that all changed when I tasted the real thing in Penang.  I have already introduced Joo Hooi Café in my past posts.  It is located next to the hugely popular Cendol shop and you can beat the long queue if you order through Joo Hooi after your meal.  The commission is minuscule. The jellies are flavoured with fresh  (I think) extract of Pandang leaves or stems and that made a HUGE difference adding depth to the dish, which is a stark contrast to the copies I have tasted outside Malaysia.  CendolCendol’s recipe is available online, but the Malays would not tolerate tasteless strips of jelly coloured with artificial green colour.  Not for the first time was I reminded in Penang never to judge unless you have checked the real things.  And the same goes for people. green penang.2

Despite my caution, media still gets to me, but some writers have been found out to be less than truthful.  This is where some corny writers would claim to be different from others, but I would not insult your intelligence.  Instead, I put on my reader’s hat.  Why are we so quick to believe one-sided claims and judge the accused without making appropriate investigation?

sleeping buddah templeIn real life we often come across ‘elaborated accusation’ of ‘self-acclaimed victims.  They will eventually reveal their true colour and we take caution not to fall for ‘the boy who cried wolf.’  However, when our life is not affected by the outcome of the news, we believe the side that shouts louder persistently.  We don’t even allow the other side a chance to set the record right. They may be guilty but not as much as the accusers claim.  It was in Australia when I first heard the term ‘bleeding heart’.  It stands for someone who loves to act generous at the expense of others.  Irresponsible kindness helps nobody: the accused, and even the elaborate accuser who will treat integrity with disdain knowing they can mix some lie with a lot of fiction and the world will reward them for it.  ‘Bleeding heart’ form bias in the name of fairness, but by judging without investigating the facts on the both side, they may miss out getting to know the merits of the accused, or potential friends.sleeping buddah

センドルというココナツミルクに緑色のゼリーを混ぜた甘みを正直すきではありませんでしたがペナン島で本物を味わって初めて納得。以前にJoo Hooi Caféというペナン麺で人気の店を紹介しましたが、隣にセンドル有名店があり行列に並ばなくてもJoo Hooiで食後に注文すれば味わえます。コミッションは微々たるもの。ゼリーは本物のパンダン植物(多分)で風味づけられ奥行きを添えてます。それまで試したセンドルは何だったのか?やはり本場マレーシアでなければ出せない味のようです。つくづく本物、事実を自分で確かめる前に偏見をもってはいけないと当たり前ですが実感。

 慎重な私もマスコミには影響されてしまいます。しかし注意をひくために記事に色をつけていた事が後に判明する記者の方もいるのですよね。物書きを目指す者として注意せねばなりませんが、ここでは読者として考えます。どうして我々は一方的な主張を鵜呑みにして偏見を持ってしまうのでしょう?実生活なら被害者ぶった人間の着色した告発に遭遇しても彼らはじきに正体がばれるので「狼少年」から我々は身を守ります。しかし自分の生活に影響がなければ告発された人間を簡単に決めつけて弁解の余地も与えません。豪州で初めて耳にしたのがBleeding Heart,直訳して垂れ流しの心ですが、無責任に道徳者を演じる人を指します。片方の主張だけを取り上げる無責任さは皆に害します。告発される者は勿論、告発側の人間も人生をなめるようになるでしょう。少しの嘘と多くの創作を混ぜれば世間の同情をかい利得につながるなら地道な努力が馬鹿らしくなって当然。垂れ流しの心の人は両方の主張をとりあげもしないで偏見を持つことで‘不当に告発された者’の長所を知らないままで終わるかも。もしかしたら友達になれたかもしれないのに。

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