Last Thursday I was at a public insitution gathering when the first news came in about the plane that crashed into an office building in Austin, Texas. Immediately I began to hear comments about "Obama is too easy on those damn terrorists!" or "When will Obama learn?" or "That's what we get for coddling the terrorists," or "No doubt it is some Moslem terrorist." It was almost as though people were pleased that their illogical judgments about the Obama administration were being confirmed.
A little while later more specific news began to filter in about it being some disraught American who flew his small plane into an IRS office building. I could feel the air go out of the room, as though people were sad to learn that it was an American and not an Arab Moslem. I was astonished. Is this how prejudice and judgementalism play out in today's hateful American society?
We have become so hatefully segmented and ideological in our thinking that we rejoice in learning about Moslem terrorists so that our sweeping conclusions about them are assured and confirmed. And that some of us rejoice in finding faults with liberals and progressives and "their" President. Yes, we have sunk this low.
An interesting side-bar to this story in Austin is that the hatred against the IRS and the government "taxers" is only good if the action is against the liberal government's actions. Amazingly, when it comes to taxes we seem to overlook the fact that the leading Republican candidate for Governor of Wisconsin, a wealthy man, has not paid any income taxes in 9 of the last 10 years. And that the past conservative presidents have given tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans and not the middle class. We were told by conservatives when Bush lowered taxes for the richest Americans nine years ago that this would create jobs. How is this playing out for you today?
It was not too long ago that terrorism struck in the heartland of the United States when Timothy McVeigh, a right-wing nut, killed many Americans in his bombing of the federal office building in Oklahoma City. There were some who celebrated this strike against the government, but not too many. Today we have people acting out in strange, bitter, insane ways with the hateful agenda presented by the right-wing in America. Many of this strange bitterness is against things that would help the majority of poor and middle-class Americans. Bombing federal buildings and killing innocent Americans is not a sane thing to do. And to condone or celebrate it, or to assume in knee-jerk reaction against Moslems or liberals is an example of how nuts we have become.
We shall have to begin to carry outselves as sane, adult Americans and see the future in a spirit of cooperation for our nation and society. The insanity of both the left and the right is destroying us. Bitter and extreme ideology is seriously eroding our democracy. Will sane Americans please step forward.