One of the strongest debates that was held in SABF’s last edition was, as a matter of fact, after the forum ended. In December 2009, one of the typical chain mails generated an interesting but revelling discussion.

It was about an article sent by one the participants. The main topic was a massive marriage of underage girls taking place in Gaza. Later, one of the participants of this debate raised the remarkable tendency of the article’s author. In this way, he nullified the true veracity of the information provided. Nevertheless, the discussion was installed. The fear to different ideas shone in the mud of the “politically correct” arguments.

Another similar strike from SABF 2009 was Douglas Casey’s presentation. This American speaker, who defines himself as “liberal, nihilist and anarchist” revolutionized the debate like no other had done it before. During the three days of forum, he managed to include his name and ideas into all participants’ dialogues. Most of them, attacking him. Why?

These are two situations of a certain reality. We are not ready to get out of our comfort zone and to go beyond it. Fear to ideas which are different from ours, and the difficulty to put oneself into the others’ position are some of the common factors among us, the human beings. However, our challenge lies in overcoming them.

If we really want to believe in the possibility of becoming future leaders, of working for a better society and in our capacity of being agents of change, we must be conscious that the road  ahead of us is far too long. This experience is just the beginning.

I would like to close this article with a personal recommendation for the 100 Sabfers 2010: do not close yourselves to your own ideas, even what is different can help you move forward.