How exactly do we “scale” empathy in an in-group/out-group world?

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Common discussion these days: “We need to find more empathy! We need to scale it!” It’s not that easy, guys. Life is about in-group and out-group to virtually everyone.

Example: if you read my posts here and there, you know I was with someone about a decade. All her friends, and their significant others, became good friends of mine. I did the “wedding circuit” and all that (“the baby circuit”) with them. Then my deal ended. I know friends of the ex are tricky. No one would ever deny that.

A few weeks ago, on a Friday, I was clearing photos from my phone and found a photo of my ex’s friend with an adorable Asian baby (not hers). Sent it to her. Instant response: “Never contact me again.”

I was actually pretty close with her husband, and texted him a few days ago about NBA. He responded: “Get a fucking therapist, dude.”

This, to me, is a mix of “maybe these people were shitty friends to begin with” and “in-group vs. out-group scales a lot faster than empathy.”

Most people choose their work silo and their family unit over everything, from broader societal issues (racism, police, etc.) to the bigger picture of humanity.

How exactly are we going to scale empathy in that moment?

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