One of the things I liked most about the later part of my undergraduate studies was the number of research assignments in upper-level courses. What many students bemoaned, I relished. Hours upon hours spent in relative solitude in the library scouring texts and compiling sources for citation were my forte and pleasure, and strangely enough, I’m not particularly sure why. I have, by nature I suppose, long favored the library’s reference section to that reserved for fiction, and a good dose of history, especially things that are classical, has always trumped the banality I find in the philosophy and records of the post-modern age. So much did I relish this activity of lively research, that I would later commit myself to active study apart from university in my free time.
I worked as best I could as an independent writer after graduation, and it was during this time that I started my business and its eponymous website, Myron the Writer. The site was to serve two purposes: to answer basic grammar questions by request and to provide opinion on current affairs in a succinct, knowledgeable and tactful way. My opinion pieces were all titled “On [insert noun here],” a practice that has lent itself to the title “On Argumentation” for this piece. My writing was met with a great response at that time, and effectively sparked public discourse on a range of topics. It was also during this time when, as a result of the free time afforded me by virtue of having graduated university, I began to research and write on matters specific to economics. I immersed myself in anything I could get my hands on – the works of men from Karl Marx to John Maynard Keynes to Milton Friedman. If the man was praised, I vetted him, if he was demonized, I vetted him even more. Not only did I read the works of men long passed away, but I also watched the modern debates of those who espoused their teachings because I wanted to present anything I held to in a professional and professorial manner.
It could be well said of me that I gained an insatiable curiosity to truly understand how and why things function the way they do in our world. Sometimes, I wonder if I should have left well enough alone. The more I researched, the more disillusioned I became with our current political and economic system as interpreted by both major political parties. I also came to question the method that most employed as a means to promote their platform, from politicians to pundits to peers. We have somehow resolved to simply bark at one another in a facile, pathos-driven “proof by assertion” approach to argumentation. Many times I’ve witnessed people speaking to one another on television and on the street in a sensationalized, “You don’t agree with me, ergo you’re Adolph Hitler,” style of discussion.
Would to God that there was some forum with some modicum of decorum to bring thoughts to the table and accept contrary ones without resorting to name calling. My desire as a writer for My City Magazine has long been to provide the reader with more than just beautiful pictures at “X” fundraiser by including articles that might provoke him or her to serious thought; not anger. I want to interact with our readers on all the things that have a major impact on our lives, and although I enjoy Grecian logic and assertion, I look forward to simply asking questions of the reader in a more Hebraic philosophical approach to discussion. Things discussed will have a direct correlation to our lives.
My approach to opening up discourse in our community is not an invitation to caustic rhetoric. We at My City Magazine have done well to honor all types of people who do all types of things, thus a culture of honor will be presented in all of my works and a response in kind will be expected of the reader. This new idea requires the reader to take a little more time with our text and to carefully weigh matters, should he or she choose to be involved in the discussion. I use the term discussion lightly – figuratively even – The Conversation Model, for all you lovers of English composition. I am speaking to the discussion that is the interconnected action of our daily lives. This should be interesting to say the least.
Good day, Flint. We’ll talk soon.
PHOTO BY SARAH REED-SZUMANSKI