Friday, January 14, 2011
Politics, Religion and Guns, Oh My!
This picture has been published in every media source in the nation and beyond. With his long hair shaved off, he looks like the personification of evil. But he's not. He's sick and sad and was a perfect breeding ground for the embryos of hate that are being heaped on us, daily. He is another undervalued human being who was pushed by hate rhetoric and his own demons into finding validation in a horrible way. Now his legacy will be a negative one and his name will always be associated with horror, death and hate.
I have maintained, for quite a while now, that the far right, with its ties to ultra-conservative Christianity, and the talking heads that fuel the fire, are the biggest threats to our basic freedoms. They don't have to pull the guns themselves, although Ms. Palin seems to see herself as mighty handy with a weapon. All they have to do is keep spewing the vitriolic bile of their hate and fear-mongering misinformation, and there will be all the Jareds out there who will think they are being charged, personally, with a task. It is a simple matter, unfortunately, to arm themselves with weapons.
This incident didn't turn us against each other. We were already turned. The poison has been seeping into the system for a long time, now. I have watched it in my own family. We have reached the point in our society where we no longer allow anyone a difference of opinion for fear that ours will be wrong. In my own circle, in my own family, I have seen people blocking others from their Facebook pages because of issues of religion, politics or both. I have an old friend who has unfriended me because of my opinions on adoption and organized religion. The stage is set and the fuses are waiting to be lit.
I know this post is a departure from my normal subject matter, its connection only very tenuous. But I cannot let it go without saying my piece. With all due respect to our Commander In Chief, I am angry that these people take our precious freedom of speech and use it to inflame and misinform. Taking the high road is good, and I respect those who do. But when you turn the other cheek to these asshats, they just slap that one, too. No, I do not advocate censorship, but I do wonder what would happen if every empty-headed rambling of Palin's was taken apart, piece by piece, by the media? I wonder what would happen if we refused, en masse, to buy the products of the sponsors who keep the inflamers on the air? There used to be a time when people were careful and responsible about how they used freedom of speech.
Would that reduce the volume of broadcast bias and bombasity? Might any who were shown to be as foolish as the charges they level actually be embarrassed by being publicly outed as agitators? Would they finally give up if their protestations started falling on deaf ears?
It would be interesting to see, wouldn't it?