Things I Hate and the People I Don’t

I’m unsure if the fact that elections bring me soooo much anxiety is due to my age or just the forced-on-me experience. Both? In explanation, after over 50 years of life and being cognizant of what feels like at least a thousand different elections, my tolerance for political speak is quickly ebbing. I hate politicking.

I think I may have hit upon the reason for the politically spun overkill – the dumb-downed media. Why just rely on the stuffy old debates when you can have “reporters” interpret “news” for you? Make it exciting, even if it shouldn’t be. Aren’t you loving how the same facts can be skewed to make two diametrically opposite points (i.e., “Obama is pro women and female voters support him/Women have suffered the most due to BHO’s failed economics” – just the latest example as of this editorial)? Isn’t it remarkably sad that the winner has to be determined by who can incite the greatest amount of hate? Is anyone left wondering how political and/or civil unrest could possibly inundate this country? Between television and the printed word? Why can’t we have a rule of civility that candidates can state what they believe will move the nation forward and let it end there? I cannot, for the life of me, figure out how someone will suffer cataclysmic injury of their first amendment right if they can’t engage in hate speech. What about the result of the victims of “protected” hate speech? The Constitution is meant to protect flesh and blood people, not just intangible, ethereal “rights.” There is a lot of ground between all and nothing. Cooler heads need to start prevailing on all sides.

In no way would this prevent news media from contrasting the ideals and ideas of the candidates. They still could make their recommendations as they see fit. Give equal time to the statement of the FACTS and leave the conjecture and the inflammatory out of the picture. Why have the media moguls shirked their responsibility? Where are the editors? (Don’t even get me started on the lack of spelling edits, which I suspect is a “cost-saving” measure resulting from the firing of the valiant grammar editors. This cost-saving excuse may answer my own question.)

I’ve grown to despise inflammatory politics; however, have come to pity politicians. Nobody likes them, except for themselves. In the false culture of the only two-party system, very limited few can win and far much more lose. That often is you and me, the non-politicians. The politicians have ensured and insured their own behinds. I don’t harbor ill will toward the current President. So now the conservatives are enraged with me. Heck, I don’t even hate George Bush Jr. or Sr. The liberals now are ready to pelt me with heavy stones. It’s tough to be an Independent-voting moderate! The restrictive two-party system and their incessant hammering on the other is the equivalent of identical twins trying to deny their matching DNA. All the protesting is not fooling everyone. The evidence speaks for itself.

Leaving the irascity of politics, another thing I hate: “Reality TV.” Mr. Philo Farnsworth, credited with patenting the first television signal, could never have imagined how that slippery slope would progress (or regress?). Oh, and the media’s obsession with it. Because even if I never, ever, want to watch a complete, brainless episode of the Real Housewives/Jersey Shore genre, I can see it recapped on any of the morning news (?) shows. While news can be entertaining (human interest story), it is not brainless entertainment. Entertainment is entertainment and news is news. Why has entertainment gone from “I Love Lucy” to “You’re Fired”? Wouldn’t you love to see if Tom Brokaw’s passport lists him as a comedian? Or if Snooki’s says journalist? Aren’t there definitions any longer? I’d like to believe never the twain could meet, but I’m fearful proof of the opposite is out there.

I can recall when I thought “Entertainment Tonight” was just so edgy! I can’t stand the thought of subjecting myself to an hour-long (psychotic break with and un-) reality TV, but I don’t hate any of the cast members. Maybe I hate that they are employed and making millions more in pay than this obscure, never-to-be-known blogger. Or military members, police, firefighters, doctors, nurses, teachers, real writers, etc. Truly, life and employment category value is not fair. 

To round out my top three hates, let me sum it up quickly: Mean people stink. Written deductively, this can be my conclusion. Then again, if I were to cut and paste this as the first paragraph, would it be inductive, as well? Perhaps no matter.

For many, life has become the empire of the mean and destructively critical: Bullies in kindergarten, on TV and on the Internet. Not to beat the dead horse–but politicians and wannabes, not satisfied with only fact-spinning but having to take it to the next O’Reilly-esque, name-calling level. Prejudice and any form into which prejudice can morph. Us versus Them. Everyone wants to be in the superior “us” crowd and no one in the inferior “them” crowd. Prejudice against Them can be defined by, among other factors, creed, generation, ethnicity, gender, education, opinion, or socioeconomics. How often do we allow this to create a hostile mind in us and join in the spewing? All in the quest of feeling as though we could exert influence over someone else? Does “it” all boil down to our personal narcissism? Self worship and the desire to convince others to bow at our altars? Are we no longer content with having influence over the poor unfortunates who share our dwellings? Must we desire to compete with Deity? Hey, why am I blogging? Oh no, my mind just crashed…;)

I recall sitting in my college psychology class. The subject was primary school-aged children and the pressure to perform. Never one to learn to sit on her hands, I raised one of mine and spoke about how not all children mature at the same rate, in the same grade, and perhaps we need to allow some to take a step back to let them to catch up instead of the “sink or swim” attitude. I remember being struck by the teacher’s answer. It sounded so anti-societal to me. It was, “Maybe you’d just better rethink that 60s hippie attitude if you want the student to be able to be competitive.” Just do and don’t think about the consequence? I was no kid at that time, having not entered college until age 27; however, I was just a bit too juvenile to be classified a “hippie.” I was the ripe old age of 9 in 1969. Most fourth-graders who were firstborns were clueless about Woodstock. The nerve! I wonder what that teacher now thinks of the “competitive” society. It depends on the type of competition, perhaps? There is a point at which competition turns not only unfair but ugly. One could extrapolate the possibility of a society of bullies each trying to out-bully the other.

Yes, I hate the practice of bullying. Still, I caution myself not to hate bullies. Jesus radically said to pray for those who persecute us. Their lives must be so void of peace, love, or joy of any type. How’s that for hippie thinking? How miserable their worlds must be, regardless of their wealth. How worried they must be about that coveted Bully Crown. How often have I furthered their cause by my conduct, speech, writings, tweets, or posts?

Let us despise the things of competitive injustice, hate, mercilessness, lies, and self-absorption. Start with our own glass houses. Then let’s turn that disgust into empowerment of equality, love, mercy, truth, and service. Anyone wanting to feel good about himself simply needs to do good to others. Selfishness and hatred are cancers in society. I never have  heard anyone say they like cancer. Cancer kills even the host, though resulting in its very own demise. Cancer is too self-absorbed in its hate to realize it isn’t winning.

All that is needed for evil to triumph is for good men (and women) to do nothing.

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~ by saginawrobin on April 13, 2012.

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