The West and the East have come together with a vision to become a completely decentralized and yet unified community organization that will build a new internet with new standards of fairness, safety, and privacy.
It sounds nice, but when put to the test, it seems like a nightmare of conflicting visions. It often feels impossible to find common ground through the barriers of language and culture, and it is easier to fall to stereotypes that justify our own perspectives.
To the East, the West sows dissent. We are often lazy, and we often complain. We are all talk, and we do not do enough.
To the West, the East seems to be corrupt. The powerful make all the decisions and those who lead are only there because they got lucky—often not being right for the job.
To the West, the East is narrow-minded. They are selfish, and they change their minds behind closed doors. They break their promises if it helps their own agendas, and they are sly and untrustworthy.
To the East, the West is filled with short-term thinkers. We want the front to look nice, with nothing to back it up. We present things as finished before they are done, and then we complain and point fingers when things fail.
The East will say that they must make the hard decisions by ignoring the cries of the ignorant.
The West will say that there are better ways, and that if the leaders do not listen to the masses, they will fail and the West will leave.
With so much at odds, is CR just a nice idea? Is there any hope? How far can we really grow if there’s such division at the birth.
My answer? It begins with leadership. By our “parents”. Those in charge must demonstrate by their actions and by their words, acceptance and unity. Show the rest of us how cooperation can bridge cultures. If the leadership cannot do this, then how can they expect the rest of the community to follow? No matter what niceties they say, about community consensus and openness, if they do not demonstrate this internally, it will never grow beyond a mere fantasy.
I believe that there is fear in both communities. Since there is little understanding, and a gap in communication and culture, the instinct is to demonize the other. To announce one as evil, or ignorant, when the truth is both sides are afraid.
The worst decisions are born from fear and contempt.
Rong has set the first good example. He is “born of two worlds” in that he’s lived and his family has a foot in both the East and the West. He is the perfect leader for such a dream like CR. But it must extend beyond just Rong Chen. It must extend directly into EF and CR leadership, and he must invite even more representation of all cultures and mindsets into the fold.
Only then can CR represent the entire community and find unity through the example made by our leaders.