Thursday, November 17, 2016

Unexpected Benefits of the Trump Era #1: Less argument




   I usually reply to any reader who makes a halfway cogent statement. It takes time, but I find myself focusing my thoughts and using phrases that later prove valuable in columns.
    Last Friday, however, under the strain of readers replying to my column on a dozen things to do before killing oneself in despair over Trump's election, I would silently block people. Their anger was too high, their points too wild.
    To be honest, I felt relieved. No more contention. No more pointless bickering. No more getting in trouble when their ire infected me and I strayed over the line, then they complained to my bosses of being ill-used by having their vileness echoed back. Just block the stuff and be done with it.
    Reading the email below, however, the old habit of replying stirred. Such a slow pitch right down the pipe. How could I not swing? He was merely aping Trump's I'm-rubber-you're-glue reply to valid criticisms, with a spice of anti-media disdain. Words began forming in my head.
    But I didn't write that. Well, here, first read it.
I noticed you used the Southern Poverty Law Center as a resource. Considering it has little credibility (it's a partisan liberal hate group which is being paid---via donations from ignorant liberal bigots---to smear decent moral people), you damage what little credibility you currently have. You have to know that the public criticism of the media by influential people is going to get worse and worse, until the media get "fixed." Right now the credibility of the media, according to various polls, is at an all-time low. It's going to get even worse unless you people start playing fair and stop using ignorant liberal bigots as if they had any credibility. You really should be condemning the SPLC for its ignorant bigotry, instead of using it as a resource.

    I replied simply "Wow. Thanks for writing." Which was an honest summation of my feelings and drew no reply. Success! We've sailed into a realm beyond argument, where Right Wing hatred and fear are so extreme words are useless against them, mere noise, rain on a tin roof.
     Walking the dog a few minutes later, I heard, in my mind, some crashing chords from a Pink Floyd song, and its stark opening lines.
    "What shall we use... to fill ... the empty....spaces...where...we used... to talk?"
    What indeed.

11 comments:

  1. It's as if you look out your window and see a bright sunny day, perhaps a light breeze ruffling the leaves and a cloud or two drifting across the azure sky, and the trumpists look out their windows and see thunder and lightning, the trees bending over with force of the wind, the rain pelting down, hail drumming on the roof, chaos and confusion everywhere. We longer have different opinions, but different facts.

    john

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  2. My edition of last Friday Nov. 10th's column has no mention of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Planned Parenthood is what really sets them over the edge. Here's some relief for the aggravation of dealing with morons. If anyone cares to criticize the Southern Poverty Law Center, or Planned Parenthood, I'll try and educate them.

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  3. AS one of those ignorant liberal bigots who have supported the SPLC over the years, I've also read their literature and have found that none of it smears decent, moral people. Unless you want to so characterize white supremacists, neo-Nazi's, and others of that ilk.

    Tom Evans

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  4. All you have to do is wait. Sooner or later Trump and his minions will do something so stupid, so outrageous, so utterly and inarguably destructive, that all but the blindest, most ignorant partisans will be forced to acknowledge what a mistake it was to vote him into office.

    I only hope that the destruction won't be too terrible or irreversible.

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    Replies
    1. I am sure it can be worse, but up to now none of the Trump supporters care about what Trump says or does.

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  5. The last line, "What should I use to build the wall....," is especially eerie now.

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  6. I have a friend from Minnesota whose response would have been "You could be right". Of course, up there saying "Oh, I don't know about that" really means "You are completely wrong, you idiot".

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  7. What breeds such hate and sustains it? Is this the product of social media, which legitimizes it in the minds of these haters? What will break them of their self-destructive behavior? Another devastating war or massive economic collapse? My hope is that it's the product of a shrinking demographic, but I'm not sure anymore. What betrayal will Trump finally perform to wake them up to the reality of his incompetent representation?

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  8. I think we should just let them blather on and ignore their intent, or try to as long as it's not threatening speech. I used to have a job where it was OK to hang up on callers that were belligerent as long as we warned them that if they didn't change their tone we'd hang up. It's too bad we can't have dialog, but sometimes you can't.

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  9. If Trump and the Congress gut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid that would a disaster that might grab the attention of complacent Trumpists and third party/non-voters. They might not be old now, but with some luck and good medical care, they will be some day. But, oh, I don't know about that.

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