I propose a sports league where teams are formed by ideological positions. For example, one week you could have the socialist playing basketball vs. the capitalist.
Reasons to agree that this is a good idea.
1. Maybe it would let people burn off steam, so that we will not have to have real wars.
2. Without subscribing to the idea of mob (or city or country) mentality where the team represented by my mob (or city or country) is the good guy, and the other team is the "bad guys" there is very little reason to care for the outcome of sporting events. Why root for a team if every member of the team is inherently the same as other members of the other team, and members constantly get traded back and forth?
3. Greed is the only thing now that motivates players to play. They have to tell themselves, I am going to work really hard so that I can make a lot of money.
4. Apposing groups could view the contest as a vicarious struggle. In the 1980's the US and the USSR had an arms race where each side tried to prove that they could build more, and better weapons. The contest resulted in great peril for the planet. Now China and India are kind of trying to see which will be the next supper power. Some people have said that they are having a race to space. This is much better for the future of humanity, than an arms race. In a similar way, we can compete against the Chinese, on the basketball court or with Hollywood.
5. It would be interesting to see if thinking about a cause while you played, made you play harder. In war, Generals have to tell their solders why they are fighting; Think of your friends, family and homeland that you are protecting. You understand, appreciate, and love your own people; can you say the same for your enemy?
6. We all know that athletes dont play as hard when the outcome doesnt matter. They play much harder in a championship game than an exhibition game.
7. It would be interesting to see which team had better sportsmanship, the pro-choice, or the pro lifers.
8. Sociologist could examine what type of person will accept certain types of situations.
9. Athletes would no longer disengage from the real world. They would have to become real hero's that stand for something important and fight for it. They would go through a natural process that allows them to choose what they believe and develop real conviction in their ideas.
10. This is a way we can be entertained, and engaged in the real world too.
1. Players could be given one day to make up your mind.
2. Players would be able to try and influence their friends to join their side.
3. Presentations could be made to everyone be experts representing each side.
4. Professors could be available to talk with each of the players.
5. Players could post their reasons for joining each team
6. At first it may seem like it would be difficult to produce even sided teams, however I think this is where it gets cool. Extreme positions would have to be moderated until the wording for each sides positions produced evenly sized teams.
7. Different leagues with different rules could spring up. The league with the best rules would eventfully become most popular.
Principles that agree
1. To find out which ideas should win the war of ideas, we need to find ways of measuring how strongly people actually believe what they say they believe.
Reasons to not think this is a good idea.
1. People watch sports to escape from the real world
2. Instead of letting of steam, this would magnify the animosity between apposing sides.
2. Devout Christians and Muslims could not play. Response: Not only is this not true (Eric Liddell, Jonathan Edwards and Muhammad Ali, the Pope used to be no mean football player, the recently deceased former Bishop of Liverpool was a first class cricketer), but who cares? I might make a rule that sides that are actually fighting in the real world, could not participate in this, because emotions would run too high. Some of it could be humorous (think less filling vs. great taste). I'm sure some Hollywood type could come up with better ideas than me.
3. Come to Glasgow, where derby matches are accompanied by vehement, if ill informed, debate on the role of the Church of Rome in modern Christianity and the advantages and disadvantages of Irish immigration. Oh yes, and fatal stabbings by people too drunk, too aggressive and too stupid to treat a total stranger as anything other than a *?@%ing animal or dirty fenian. First hand experience of this practical reality tells me that what's proposed is a bad bad bad idea (posted by Calum). My response: at least the sides are talking. At least they are interacting with each other. They see that their are stupid people on both sides. I think they gain respect for each other also. But to your point, when people hold beliefs very strongly, competitions could get out of hand. That would have to be managed.
Origin of Idea: When watching the movie Troy, I started thinking about the old custom of letting two warriors fight instead of forcing the whole army to fight. And I guess the idea makes sense. You have the best person from each side. That kind of tells, statistically speaking, which society deserves to win, because they are able to produce more excellent specimens.