Aug 202014
 

Lately, it kinda feels as though the wheels are coming off the bus, doesn’t it?

Psychopaths openly voicing deranged and bigoted nonsense are a growing voting constituency, have hijacked one of our political parties, and are fighting madly against such evils as equality and health care and contraception, fer chrissakes.

Maniacs are murdering their way across swathes of the Middle East…including one such entity which is a major beneficiary of US taxpayer support. Cops are out of control and killing people–especially black and brown people–on a whim. A man who millions knew as fundamentally decent and warm-hearted and generous kills himself, and voices from said aforementioned crowd of psychopaths stand up and cheer.

Oh, and one of the most lethal diseases ever known to humanity is loose in West Africa, where it doesn’t make the front page most of the time because…well, you know…Africa.

And then there’s the carbon thing. Enjoying the hottest summer on record, are we?

It’s all pretty dispiriting. Even though great progress has been made on some fronts in recent years–and overall violence in the world is down considerably from, say, a century ago–the past couple of months have made reading the news something you have to psych yourself up for. And then go take a shower, or wash your eyeballs with bleach, or something.

It’s outrageous. It’s all simply outrageous.

And I think that’s why outrage is exactly the wrong response right now. The bad actors in most of this mess are the ones who specialize in outrage. They’re the Anger Kids, and we have to be something else.

It’s hard, I know, to see the fear behind the awful behavior, and find empathy for it. Doesn’t mean we should be any less firm about opposing the behavior, but for pity’s sake let’s turn the heat down rather than up, shall we?

Somehow?

At publication, the Dragon was APPALLED

  4 Responses to “Love in a Time of Horrors”

  1. Well, turning the heat down couldn’t hurt, and (with all respect), I’d suggest that a good place to start might be with the name calling and hyperbole- which seem uncharacteristic of you, Mark. Calling people “psychopaths” and “maniacs” doesn’t seem like a good way to encourage rational discourse. I strongly doubt that many of the people to whom we’re referring are actually psychotic. At best, they might be considered sociopaths, and that only by people who’s thinking begins with a different premise.
    Too, I doubt that there are many (if any) cops killing “on a whim”. I think that entirely too many law enforcement officers are undertrained and over weaponed. I think that there are far too many who shouldn’t be cops, who are too reactive and easily rattled and maybe bone deep bigots, too boot. That said, I doubt if any of them start their day shift with the intention of killing someone for no reason- except on a whim.
    All of which, Mark, is not to try to “nail” you, or catch you out in any way. It’s just that it’s so easy to let our own anger, frustration and hopelessness run away with us, and make us forget that, yes, peace does start with us. We are constantly offered opportunities to make things a little better or a little worse. When we name call and generalize, I think we make things a little worse.
    That’s how I’m seeing it, this August afternoon.
    Be well.
    -Buff

    • You know, when people are that delusional and hostile to their fellow humans, I’d say the labels fit. I’m not saying we should all be turning the other cheek; just not flying into outrage, because it doesn’t work.

      And we are just going to have to disagree about police: I think police CULTURE is the problem now–not just training–and we need national policing reform to curtail it.

  2. What would help is for the sane decent people to get more courageous and unified in standing up to the right-wing Brownshirt bullies who are the loudest and most persistent voices in the public square. We need especially to ‘work the refs’ in the mainstream media with the same vigor that the Tea Party extremists do. We need to shame the MSM from perpetuating false equivalence that in effect legitimize the tactics of the Neo-Confederate wing. Why do these guys walk away, claiming victory after pointing heavy weapons at Federal agents at the Bundy Ranch in Nevada, while a young woman at a NYC Occupy protest does jail time for reflexively giving an elbow to a cop who grabs her breasts from behind unexpectedly? We’re not going to change the really toxic right-wing types, but we need to de-legitimize them as a force in politics.

    • I certainly think the media is getting a wake-up call with what is happening in Ferguson. They’re being arrested, called the n-word and threatened with being killed. On live television!

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