Sunday, November 13, 2016

A Plea for Perspective

I try to stay away form politics on this blog, except for occasions where politics intrudes on culture, and sometimes not even then. There is a proliferation of political blogs and new sites, and my motto is, "If you don't have anything new to say, be quiet." My readers' time is limited, and they don't need yet another post on their newsfeed repeating something they already know.

However, in light of the happenings this week, I do in fact feel the desire to weigh in. Escalation of rhetoric during a Presidential election is nothing new. Both sides throw around words meant to paint the opponent in the worst possible light, and in spite of all the complaints about negative ads and not focusing on the issues, fear and negativity are always weapons of choice because they are the weapons that work best. It's not even new to paint the supporters of the opposing candidate as somehow lacking in either intelligence or common decency. That's how you shame people into staying home on Election day, or at least into being quiet about their views so they don't influence their friends and neighbors in the direction you don't want.

It's different now. Why? In short, because so many of us have lost the distinction between words and actions. Disagreement equals hate equals threat equals violence. Is it so shocking that, having convinced certain segments of the population that a certain candidate's victory will cause them physical harm, we are now seeing them scream in terror and lash out at the nearest, often innocent, targets?

It's true that the worst of the violence we are seeing is not organic and spontaneous, but an orchestrated attempt by George Soros and others like him to break our system of government and replace it with a dark visions of their deranged dreams. But enough of the strife is real, and it can lead nowhere good.

Below is a link to a blog post from an online friend of mine who writes under the name of Dedicated Tenther. I'm sharing it in the hopes that his words might begin to bring down the temperature of our collective disagreements so that the country we all love so much doesn't go down in (possibly literal) flames. As we are nearing the Holiday season, it might be a good time to step back and appreciate what we do have here, as Americans, and how important it is to keep it.

Please consider…

I’ve been lectured and spoken at.  I’ve been told I’m insensitive.  I’ve been told that I just don’t understand.  Donald Trump was elected president, and now people have all these feelings and I’m not taking them seriously.
Believe me, I do.  I understand that you are hurting and scared.  I completely get that.  My problem is not with your feelings themselves.  My problem is two-fold.  
First, and most important for my friends and family, my problem is that your fear and pain is based on lies.  You have been fed a diet of lies for months, and you believe them.  Indeed, why wouldn’t you?  It’s not like anyone has been denying them.  Indeed, much of the supposedly Conservative media (which obviously means something different than I thought it did a year ago), is engaging in the lies just as much as the “mainstream media.”
Second, and less important personally, but more important from a practical standpoint, your engagement in this very public hysteria is dangerous.  Because good and decent people like you believe the lies, too, bad and dangerous people have the moral cover to do horrible things.