Angry Losers

This week, I am inspired to write by Pat Condell, and his video Hello Angry Losers. His point is that the left seems quite ready to celebrate the democratic process when it wins, and equally ready to angrily dismiss it when it loses, to wit branding those who supported the Brexit as racist little Englanders, as idiots who voted against their own interests.

In the US, this phenomenon shows up with those seeking to Impeach Donald Trump Now, a website registered within days of President Trump's election. This movement is sponsored by such organizations as Free Speech for People.org.

I find it incredible that those who seemingly celebrate free speech seem so against it when the speech goes against their own beliefs, in this case challenged by the beliefs of Trump supporters, and their speech in selecting him.

And it may be that many of Trump people are low-information voters, who voted more on emotion than knowledge. This didn't seem to bother anyone when President Obama was elected. So why should it now?

President Trump speaks for a segment of our country that simply does not believe America is living into its potential. Rather than examining and seeking to ameliorate the concerns of the people Mr. Trump speaks for, certain elements paint their concerns as trivial. For these elements, the people of Impeach Trump Now, this is flyover country. These are the people who cling to their guns and religion, to borrow a phrase.

Maybe it is that Trump's people had not been heard. Now it's their turn to speak. And rather than show themselves as true liberals, people who understand that others may think differently, that others may have valid concerns that do not echo their own, the people at Free Speech for People enter new echo chambers to convince themselves that they are right as they try to bring down the man who just happens to speak in a different voice.

They don't need to celebrate Trump, but if, instead of being Angry Losers, they chose to celebrate our process, and use our vast resources to make a difference for all Americans - and not by reeducating them in “correct thinking” - we'd all be in a better place.

Group Think?

Why is everyone is so worked up? Is it that the left that was so willing to push its agenda down everyone else's throat is now afraid the right is going to do the same to them.

On the one hand, this is a reasonable fear. We tend to think people will think and act as we do. And if we are willing to impose our opinions on someone else, whether under the guise of progressive group think or something else, when that group is in the ascendancy, it is natural to believe it will push its agenda on us.

The funny thing is we didn't have these demonstrations, and demonization at this level, when they ascended. I think it's because maybe we don't see things the same. And I don't know if it's because the right believes more in group think, or less.

Is it because we get that people are tribal that we accept tribal behavior - “Okay, you won. Your tribe gets to rule for the moment.” - or fear it, as the case may be. Or is it that we trust differently that our institutions and constitution will uphold the rights of the individual even when group-think seems to be taking hold?

White Feminist

The following came across my facebook feed. My response is below:

I've been a White Feminist as long as I can remember … I am beginning to learn, though, that I've always been pretty self-centered in my suffering. And guess what, white blond girls from Hunterdon aren't the only ones who have been oppressed.
This year I've been faced with the fact that we white feminists have a LONG. WAY. TO. GO. on educating ourselves- on understanding, on listening- on believing-- the ways others have felt oppression…

White Feminism can be a “gateway drug” to learning about oppression, but we must use that horrible feeling as a key that opens our minds to learn about ALL types of oppression. We must feel and act with equal outrage when others' rights are infringed upon. We have much to learn from all the groups who have this fight for along [sic] time, who have been scared all along. We must be humble in our joining, and follow when others lead.

Well then, is it possible that the many who voted for Trump feel their own sort of oppression,

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Resolutions

Ninety Seven Percent of New Year's Resolutions just don't pan out. Dr. Ben Adkins, one of my virtual mentors, suggests there is a better way. Stop trying to change things. Start by measuring them. For instance, maybe you've got a resolution to put aside money for a vacation this year. What Dr. Ben suggests is take the next twenty one days. Don't try to save money. Just keep track of every dime you spend, in real time. It's all about being powerfully connected to What's So.

Now let's take it to the political arena. What are we committed to? What is our resolve? The point is we love to talk, but let's see what we do with it. If I'm committed to dialogue in the world, maybe I should measure how often I find myself talking to folks who look and think too much like me, or how much time I spend perusing facebook, only engaging on the most superficial level.

You know your own commitments. It's time to take a look at the actions you take in pursuit of them, or avoidance of them. When you've measured that, I think you'll be in a much better place to look at what action will come next.

So my invitation this week is to pick something in your life you'd like to change, and just measure what you are doing now. And while you are at it, I suggest taking Dr. Ben's advice and do that for 21 days.

Dignity

I'm reminded particularly of my son Uriel. Sometimes, as a father, I see him going to make a move while he's playing chess, and I see a better move, and I want to help him.

I've learned not to. You see the thing is he wants to play the game on his own. When he wins, he wants the win. When he loses, he's okay with that. He doesn't want to have to wonder if he'd have won without me. He doesn't want to second guess his win.

But he doesn't want me to help his brother either.

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