Thursday, January 7, 2016
Conservatives, Thy Name is Psychosis
A large segment of America seems to be suffering from self-induced psychosis. I listen to the conservative Patriot channel on my car radio as I'm traveling and after an hour or so, I want to shoot myself. The hosts scream and shout and rant and rave. "Woe is us! Be terrified You are beset by enemies on all sides! Our president is a Kenyan Muslim communist (socialist, fascist and every other negative -ist you can think of) bent on destroying America. Keep your guns handy because you will need them to "take America back".
That meme, "Take America Back" is one of the most frequently seen on Facebook. I saw one just this morning. I always ask in comments - "can you give me a few more details about how that actually works in practice?" Crickets. They don't have a clue. Maybe it is fearsome armed militias taking the country back one bird refuge at a time.
I hear and read constantly about how awful America now is. A shadow of its former self. That's what Donald Trump's campaign is all about - making America great again - because it's not great now, you know.
But I'm 69 and I haven't noticed all that much major change in America myself. My life goes on pretty much as it always has. I can't think of any freedoms I've lost unless you count wearing seatbelts and not being able to smoke where I used to smoke and driving 55 on non-interstate highways (none of which happened under Barack Obama). I bought my son's Glock from my daughter-in-law and the background check took maybe four minutes. I have to have health insurance now but then I've always had health insurance. I always wanted to have health insurance. People have different perspectives on what freedom is. I think it is not having to pay for dead beats who choose not to pay for insurance and then go to the emergency room when they are sick or in an accident.
Do I think America is perfect? Not by a long shot and some things I see make me sad. I think it is pathetic that while France invents a replacement material for healing broken bones and Japan (as well as other countries) invest in bullet trains that speed their citizens to their destination 4 times faster than any train we have here and while other countries build state-of-the art hospitals and airports and bridges, and while other countries enthusiastically engage in switching to renewable fuels, we here in America have been recently ruled by Neanderthals who cry "poverty" and say we can no longer afford to be the world's innovators....unless we're talking about weapons, of course, then money is no object . Watching our infrastructure decay makes me sad.
The whole world comes together over climate change but our Republican leadership pooh-poohs the idea because, what do scientists know? And what do women know about their own bodies. Nothing, I guess, that's why Big Daddy has to take charge of us. And though the major industrialized nations of the world were all involved in the Iran negotiations and sent their top physicists, what do they know compared to Republican congressmen?
They don't even like each other. They got rid of John Boehner and they were all - "hurray, victory for our side!" Then they elected Paul Ryan Speaker and now they hate him too because he compromised on a budget deal. The hosts on the Patriot Channel we're ready to draw and quarter him.
So, that's what makes me long for the America that used to be....seeing us falling farther and farther behind because of the archaic thinking of the people we elect.
The world is a dangerous place but it seems so much more scary to the conservatives. Home-school your kids because they might be exposed to alternate philosophies. Keep Guantanamo open at a cost of $1,000,000 a year per prisoner (as opposed to $30,000 in a federal facility) because we're too frightened of the detainees to have them touch foot on our soil. Don't let in Mexicans or Muslims. Imprison as many Blacks as we can because we know they are all thugs, better keep them away from us. Or, hell, maybe just shoot them.
It makes me sad to see so much of America living in a world of fear and conspiracy and paranoia stoked by their media - Fox News, radio talk show hosts, conservative blogs. Their stock in trade is crying wolf. They're coming for your guns! There are death panels in Obamacare! The president has seeded his administration with Muslims! He's going to declare martial law and call off the 2016 election! FEMA camps! Black helicopters! Jade Helm!
No matter how many times the predictions don't pan out, they are never discouraged but go chasing after the next one with just as much fervor. Conservatives, thy name is Psychosis.