Brief diversion from life here in Col. Ursulo Galván.
Recently I had a rather unpleasant exchange with an acquaintance in an effort to convince him to drop me from his mailing list. While in person and when not ranting about politics he is normally mild (but not always), he is among the crowd that likes to send around hate-filled email forwards: the kind that advocate filling the Rio Grande with alligators to eat immigrants, condemn anyone who might benefit from single payer health insurance as a lazy, no-good blood-sucker, stuff like that. He is also a right-wing Christian who believes Jesus not only supports but demands his bellicose hatred.
Below you will find a link to today's opinion piece by David Brooks in the New York Times. Why am I including it? Because a lot of me is actually a Burkian conservative: I don't believe in drastic change unless it's really necessary. I don't believe throwing money at them is the way to solve problems, etc. etc. I am a social liberal, but I can get along with people who are not as liberal as I and can understand why they have reservations about things that don't bother me. I support family values: I think family, friends and community are essential to human harmony and lawfulness. The article is good The following link will take you to it:
But now people like me are considered radical by the radicals on the right. One would think that honorable Republicans and Democrats would condemn the racism, the fanatacism, the mean-spiritedness, the lack of compassion, the trampling of our founding fathers' legacy. But instead this garbage makes up the substance of thought of one of our two major political parties, and the one in power at that. And the leading Republican presidential candidates vie with each other to see who can be most bigotted, intolerant, and stupid.
So my emailing friend feels perfectly justified in what he does, backed up as he believes he is not just by the Christian Bible, not just by Jesus, but by the prominence of similar believers on our national scene and their control of the political party and its leaders that now control power in our country. And by the Democrats' unwillingness to forcefully take them on.
What makes people turn into these mindless, destructive whirlwinds of rage? Below are two links to articles which offer some ideas. I'm not sure if I agree with them completely: I think the problem is multifaceted with different emphases for different folks, but nonetheless they go some distance to make clear that we are not dealing here with people who will respond with empathy and reason. The first articlefirst article has to do with misplaced aggression.
The second article
describes different ways of thinking, the way of people like my acquaintance being resistant to modification. It's given within a neuroscience context and I don't really think neuroscience knows as much as thinks it does, but it describes reasonably well that which philosophers, psychologists and so forth have also described.
So there's no point to pandering to the right. They ain't gonna listen. Are you listening, Ms. Pelosi, Mr. Reid?