I realize that anyone who is reading my thoughts is, in all likelihood, probably in agreement with some of my arguments - otherwise you would have bid me and my little rants adieu some time ago. I am unabashedly a liberal in my ideology and belief systems. I support and defend a woman's right to her body and to be equal with men. I believe that we have an obligation to come to the aid of those less fortunate. As Uncle Ben teaches us, with great power comes great responsibility.
I also believe that the system, "the man" shall we say, succeeds when we are kept like sheep - fat and sassy, debating the television/media flavor of the month, the hyped hoopla that allows us to think we're having real debate. Let's get indignant over a red cup at Starbucks. Let's pretend there's a war on Christmas and Christians because somebody suggested we say Happy Holidays and you think godless liberals don't want you to say Merry Christmas anymore - it's not like there aren't ten or eleven religious holidays from roughly Thanksgiving to New Year's Day, and maybe wishing everyone you meet a Happy Holiday might be a nice thing to do. Let's get angry about Caitlyn Jenner being a real woman or not and deserving of fake awards or not. Let's talk about who's fucking who on The Voice, The Real Housewives of X town and The Fake Ass Duggar Prophets.
They want us to focus on this pablum and allow the real issues to pass from our memory. Suck all the crap in and stare into Kaa's eyes ... Forget the refugees ... Turn from an honest dialogue on gun control ... Pay no attention to the squeezing of equal healthcare access for poor women and men ... Ignore the economic caste system that is becoming written in stone.
And then into the mix, toss Donald Trump and his ever increasingly divisive rhetoric. Months ago, I mentioned I was concerned about him and what he might foment. Don't worry, friends and family told me. He's a joke; no one really believes what he has to say. Each day he struts and preens in front of the cameras, spouting off unimaginable soundbites:
- Today's campaign press release, "Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on."
- If he's elected President he would deport Syrian refugees who are here, including children. “They’re going to be gone. They will go back. … I’ve said it before, in fact, and everyone hears what I say, including them, believe it or not,” Trump said of the refugees.
- When he was asked about all Muslims here being issued ID cards: He said, “we’re going to have to look at a lot of things very closely.”
- On the families of terrorists: "The other thing with the terrorists is you have to take out their families, when you get these terrorists, you have to take out their families. They care about their lives, don't kid yourself. When they say they don't care about their lives, you have to take out their families," Trump said.
- A protester at his rally who was punched and kicked by Trump supporters, "maybe he should have been roughed up."
He is still ahead in the polls. Clients I know think he's great - "he's just saying what most of us think already." They were having a lively discussion in the lobby about how Trump would turn this country around. It reminded me of Hitler's Willing Executioners, by Daniel Goldhagen. I hope I don't give Goldhagen's thesis a disservice by summing it up thus; the German people were not only aware of what was going on under the Nazi regime, but were willing participants and in multiple instances, participated in a culture of cruelty and murder. The prevailing thought prior to this had been that the majority of the German public was indifferent to what the regime was doing and more disliked the Jews than hated them.
Are Trump and his supporters Nazis - certainly not, but he is riling up his supporters with comments that make a lot of people very uncomfortable. Apparently, not uncomfortable enough for the Republican party or the other candidates on the stage with him to disavow him and all he stands. It's as though they've become indifferent. We must not go down that path.