Did you know that whataboutism is an official word? Unfortunately, it is now pushed into a completely different track.
Whataboutism is that you ask in a discussion, repeatedly about other events, to corner him and win the discussion.
- And what about Norway 2011?
- Yes … but on the 11th of September …
- … but the Germans killed so many people back then …
In the public
Even today, this argumentation method is used between people, families, nations and religions. In the following I will give some examples.
In the narrow circle
When people quarrel and never make peace, it’s mostly because they argue with whataboutism in their minds. Again and again the old memories come out and the person’s heart blocks the idea of peace.
Take Turkey and Saudi Arabia as an example. When the issue of peace-keeping comes up, many people in Turkey will argue against it by saying, “But the Arabs attacked us from behind in the war of independence of Turkey.” There is always a story from the past rolled out, which can not be undone and thus prevents peace.
In the more than 600 years that the Ottoman Empire reigned, the people of all world religions lived together in peace. However, if you want to have the same peace nowadays, you are faced with very big obstacles that are shaped by historical events.
In the media / on the internet
What causes most of Whataboutism is most prevalent in our time is the mass media and the Internet. There, a public opinion is formed and shaped. This is very often an result of people who sit unsuspecting in front of the TV or read the comments on social media.
On television and in the commentaries, for example, they are thrown back and forth in a debate with historical events, which does not contribute to a solution at all but merely creates drama. This is of course in the sense of these platforms.
The more one deals with whataboutism, the better one understands that one tends even to it. It is important in his character and public debates to be able to filter it out and direct it.
The opposite side is called constructive criticism. This means that you address problems, but also present a solution to every problem. We need to be more constructive in criticizing the world. Otherwise it will go on and we will have achieved nothing in our lifetime.