Tag Archives: politics

News In An Echo Chamber

Hello,

I realized recently that I get the majority of my news through social media sites and that’s really got to stop.

Most of the time, I only hear about events important enough to be blared out in all-caps, bolded typeface sprayed all over the worst possible photograph of Donald Trump. While this is helpful in continuing to make me furious and enrage, it’s not really keeping me too informed.

The social media echo chamber is probably the most dangerous thing that’s happening to American politics right now. Both sides are inundated with the same articles and pundit pieces over and over again, reiterating the same points again and again until the reader is whipped into a self-righteous fury abut the other side. We’ve been treating politics like we’re rooting for sports teams and it doesn’t matter how your team wins the game or what your team is doing, because it’s all about your team beating the other team.

It also means that there’s no benefit for a party to go against their President. It’s Republicans versus Democrats, right or wrong. If criticisms are leveled by Democrats against Republicans, it’s clearly a bias. There is no validity to the claims, period, because it’s just a case of sour grapes.

This isn’t just a Republican issue. Democrats were hard pressed to level any criticisms against the Obama Administration, because he was our guy, even though there was plenty that could have been done better by his Administration and he was far from the agent for change that we were hoping for.

We need to stop looking at our political parties like it’s the goddamn Red Sox versus the Yankees. This isn’t about winning points. This isn’t about who can cheer the loudest or who has the most fans in the stands.

People are dying because we have made any type of discussion impossible to have. This is not an exaggeration for some sort of effect. We are embroiled in wars that have no end in sight, because of how we choose to discuss politics. We have communities that have not had clean drinking water or electricity, because our politicians don’t earn any points with their screaming fans for helping American citizens. Refugees are being used as political pawns when they are human beings who came to our borders looking for help.

The only people who are benefiting from this type of theater are our politicians who preen and strut and pontificate. They stoke our rage at the other side and bask in our applause when they score cheap points against each other.

We need to take back the discussion and stop whining and mewling at each other and go back to shouting at the people who are really winning this horrific game.

-D-

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Filed under Thinking and Pondering: Science, History, Analysis and Over-Think

Tell Me Why, Amendment One

I normally don’t talk about politics. I think it ends up being a preaching to the choir situation, where your enjoyment of the entry comes from whether or not you agree with me already. I don’t think I’m going to change any minds and I think, at best, I can just get people to understand where my views are coming from. Which is fine. I think the country would be in a better position right now if people spent less time trying to force everyone to agree than if they just tried to spend five minutes trying to understand where someone is coming from.

So that’s what I’m going to try and do right now. I want to understand. I want you, the reader, if you disagree with me, to tell me where you’re coming from. I’m doing this, because I really do not understand. I am lost. I am incapable of empathizing.

Here’s the issue: In my old state (North Carolina), they’re going to vote on Amendment 1. It defines marriage as being between a man and a woman and they’re voting on this tomorrow.

And I want to know why, because this kind of thing makes me angry. In point of fact, I’m pretty fucking pissed off right now. I do not, cannot, comprehend the sheer amount of cussedness it takes for one human being to try and restrict another human being’s happiness when no-one is being hurt. These are consenting adults. These are individuals who have made a decision to legally bind themselves to one another. And you are saying no.

Why are you saying no?

That’s all I want to hear from you. I don’t want to change your mind. I don’t want to enter in a discussion with you. I have no ambitions or designs upon your opinions, even if those opinions are about to strip rights from your fellow citizens.

Is it for religious reasons? Have you read your Bible and you’ve read that bit about how God doesn’t want men to lay with men as they lay with a woman (Lev. 18:22)? If you’re religious, I can see how that might be a reason. These are the holy words of God. You don’t want to disobey them. That’s a sin. You’ll go straight to hell for ignoring His words.

Do you also make sure to keep your woman outside of the house during her menses? She’s unclean, you know. Needs to be purified. That’s Leviticus 12. Whole chapter on how filthy women are when they’re menstruating. I’m guessing there aren’t a lot of good, Christian women who obey any of those laws, even if they are the holy word of God.  Not a lot of Christians nowadays who pay attention to any of the old laws though. They ignore the dietary laws. They ignore the laws about the Sabbath. They ignore any laws about sacrifices or stoning. Not a lot of adulterers being stoned nowadays.

So why not ignore the whole bit about men laying with other men? You find it so easy to ignore everything that’s inconvenient for you or your family. You pick the one thing that’s so easy to do. All you have to do is hate someone that’s different. You ignore Jesus when he says “Sell all that you own and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in Heaven.” (Mark 10:3). You ignore when Jesus says that the second most important thing (after loving God) is to love your neighbor (Matthew 22 36:40).

Do not hide behind your holy book when you deny your fellow man. Do not cower behind religion when you hate someone who is different from you. Have the decency and the backbone to acknowledge the fact that your hate, your contempt, your bigotry comes not from holy words or from saints or angels, but from yourself.

Are you trying to protect the sanctity of marriage? Do you think, for some reason, that marriage can be ruined by two people with the same genitals getting hitched? I think marriage can be ruined by spousal abuse and domesticate violence. I think a marriage can be ruined by alcoholism or drug addiction. I think a marriage can be ruined by two people who no longer love each other. I think a marriage can be ruined by infidelity or boredom or illness or bottled emotions or money problems.

But I don’t see YOUR marriage being ruined by Adam and Steve getting hitched, just like I don’t see your marriage getting ruined by Stephanie and Adam…ina. Marriage is not an institution, a grand old building that can be ruined by one thing. Marriage is a legal contract between two people. So explain to me how the sanctity of your marriage is being ruined by two dudes. Please. I want to know. Explain to me in excruciating detail why this is the case.

Because I…do…not…understand. And I’m furious. And I’m not a gay man trying to get married. So I can’t even imagine how anyone in that position must feel. Even if they don’t want to get married, I imagine they’re pretty pissed that someone is telling them that they can’t just for pure pissedness.

So tell me, in the comments below, why? That’s all I want. Tell me why you don’t think same-sex couples should enjoy the same legal benefits as different-sex couples.

I’m done yelling. I’m ready to listen.

Please

Why?

-D-

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Filed under Thinking and Pondering: Science, History, Analysis and Over-Think