Friday, April 22, 2011

Politically Correct Slappage



Well it’s that time in our lives again everyone, when in 18 short months all the Americans will head to the polls.  Actually only about 50% of us head to the polls, but who cares about that. 

I can’t believe four years have gone by so quickly.  Except that four years haven’t gone by yet…it’s only been a little over two years.  So why in Sam Hill am I already hearing about The Donald, Mitt or T-Paw?  Why oh why are we again obsessing over a birth certificate or a certificate of live birth??

Incidentally, my state of Ohio issues a “Certificate of Vital Record”…and now I feel tragically bad for my sons because apparently they can’t prove they’re legal residents of the United States, due to the semantic short sightedness of my State’s legislature.

What’s more tragic is how vicious it’s about to get once again in this country. We all have our media outlets telling us what we want to hear because if you take one giant step back and look glaringly at every single outlet there is:

NOT ONE OF THEM IS FAIR AND BALANCED.

Not one.  And why should it be?  I’ll be honest and tell you I’m an unapologetic bleeding heart liberal.  Seriously…it rarely gets too liberal for me.  And if it was possible to attain TRUE socialism, true communism, in the purest senses of the words where we each take care of each other and everyone rises to the best of their abilities to care for the whole (which is completely impossible because we’re a marvelous invention full of free will) I’d be 100% on board with that model.

So why would I seek a media outlet that speaks to conservatives?  I read Huff Post; I do not watch Fox News…that’s because Fox News makes me mad. I completely disagree with 85% or more of what they say and since I’m not changing their mind and they’re not changing mine, why battle?  And why should conservatives battle me? 

Here’s the deal in my opinion:  we each have supremely valid opinions. 

And both of us think the other is hellaciously, dead wrong.  That’s the beauty of our system. Every four years we have a complete regime change and no one takes to the streets.  We just bitch and moan in every outlet we can find until the next four years roll around and we switch it up.  Then it’s the other side’s turn to piss in the cornflakes for four years, lament how this country is going down in flames and will disappear like the Mayans.

And yet….YET….every four years here we are. 

I can go back to how Jefferson disregarded the Constitution he just helped write by buying the Louisiana Territory, but let me start more recently:  President Nixon didn’t tarnish “The Office of The President” beyond repair, President Carter didn’t leave us all living in wigwams, President Reagan and Bush I didn’t eliminate for all time the middle class, President Clinton didn’t do what everyone thought Nixon fell short on, and President Bush II didn’t ignite the very flames of Hell and bring them to bear on the Heartland.  If any of this had happened, I wouldn’t be sitting here typing this.

President Obama is doing half of his job wrong just like every president before and after him because this country is made of two groups.  And those two groups will never merge into one.

Has anyone seen this ancient symbol?


BALANCE.

Equals and opposites.  And that’s what our drunk Founding Fathers made for us. It’s not in the media but if we think for ourselves, it’s the backbone of our democracy…you know, the one we ALL love so much we’ll send our children, spouses and parents into other countries to die for. 

Facebook, Twitter and the rest of media are soon going to be full of vitriol and spite towards the people who feel and believe the balancing opposite of our own ideals.  When it comes to politics, friends become enemies and we lose all sense of compassion and care towards each other.

What does this say about us? 

I believe it speaks to our short sightedness as well as our disconnectedness with our human nature.  If we look at this brave nation we inhabit, it’s had a history of success.  In the grand scheme of human history, the United States is still a teenager with cystic acne and teeth too big for its face.  But it’s been a healthy child who’s trying to grow into a loving adult.  No set of babysitters in its 200 years has murdered it or chopped off a leg.  There hasn’t been a Presidential infanticide yet.

So why all the rock throwing?  Why all the bullying and trash talking?

Where is the sense that we’re PARTNERS even in disagreement?  A good corporation has a balance and sense of equality among partners and SHAREholders.  A good marriage allows for growth among difference, and promotes each partner in their individuality as well as their union.  A parent loves a child and supports them even in the face of poor decisions.  There are blessedly few things in this world so truly irrevocable that they’re UNDOABLE, especially in politics.

There is no act, no law, no policy that cannot be undone and we’ve seen this for 200 years…yet we all cry that the sky is falling and the other 50% of the populace is to blame for our certain demise.  But these people are our friends when the topic isn’t government and policy making.  Why would they seek our death, or suffering?

WHY WOULD THEY?  They don’t. We don’t.

Yet we so close off to compassion and fundamental hearing.  We speak in dire terms and make grand pronouncements about how things are.  We close our minds and hearts to the breadth of knowledge and experience in the natural opposite and decide that the balancing half doesn’t need to be there anymore.

Think that through:  why do we assume one can exist without the other? What do we think happens to our equilibrium when the balancing side goes away?

I believe we need to speak kindly to and of one another.  We need to open our hearts and ears.  In our “other” lives, we listen to our friends, children, and spouses.  We don’t have to agree but we still listen. And listening doesn’t mean we condone; but it is a caring way to be with each other. 

In the next 18 months, if it seems right to you, try very hard to open your heart to understand that a differing opinion doesn’t mean the person who holds it is a vile wretch upon society, deserving of hate, contempt and condescension.  That person is your human sibling and your equal opposite.

Treat one another with an open heart and with care.  Maybe if we start speaking in friendship, we can open each other’s minds a little to our way of thinking and move towards a COMMON goal.

After all, the best part of the playground needs two opposing forces.




*Photo credit:  Taowayoflife.com, buzzle.com, cstoller on flickr

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