Russians Love Their Children Too

Today, I’ve read a couple of posts on Facebook from acquaintances of mine who are absolutely unhinged about the election results. I get it. I have been sorely disappointed by election results. But this nonsense about the country being brought down by hordes of stupid, lazy Americans who don’t love their country has to stop.  (I’m looking at celebrities like Ted Nugent, Victoria Jackson, Donald Trump, but more sadly at high school friends who seem to be drinking from the same punch bowl.) Maybe you’re working hard, and maybe you’re not prospering, and maybe the country is not what you envision. But, you’re fooling yourself if you think it’s because half the country is a bunch of lazy, ungrateful, godless America-haters.

That’s why I’m thankful for social media that has brought me in touch with a number of friends, thinkers, lawmakers, etc. who favor very different policies than I do; but who I can see, day-to-day, love our country, love their families, and are very sincerely acting in good faith — even if I think they are misinformed about the underlying facts and/or wrong about the best way to reach solutions.

I’m sure I get carried away at times. And, certainly, the country has its share of bums and sociopaths. But that is far from the norm.  I feel like when I start drifting off the rails, I’m pulled back by the basic humanity of the people with whom I disagree. They love their spouses. They want the best for their kids. They want America to be a good place. Even if I might think that their beliefs and policy preferences are making things worse for their wives, kids, and country; I’m almost always wrong if I believe they’re making their choices out of malice.

Comments

  1. varangianguard says

    Still waiting for the sky to fall (although that is supposed to happen on this Friday according to a movie trailer I watched).

  2. says

    I see things that express my thoughts before I get a chance to express them. But other things come “out of left field” and expand my mind.
    In the latter category is this piece by a youngish blogger Priest who explains — without reference to them being stupid and lazy (or even afflicted with nymphomania or satyriasis) — why he thinks younger and darker skinned people voted for Obama. For a guy with localist, Distributist and communitarian leanings, it’s encouraging. Something to think about and to work with to build a better country if not to rebuild the GOP. https://lifebearingwilderness.wordpress.com/2012/11/07/the-real-reason-barack-obama-won-re-election/

    • says

      Tipsy,
      I have to say of all the positive (and, of course, many negative) things I’ve heard thus far related to my article, you have given me the highest compliment by saying the article “expand[ed your] mind.” That certainly was its only real intention–as are any pieces I write. I hope people expand their horizons. If they agree or disagree with me, at least try to think of issues from different perspectives.

      With that in mind, you suggested something I think would be great: rebuilding the GOP. I hoped people would see this possibility from my article; namely, that it was not an attack against Republican people, but an explanation of why the GOP failed in this presidential election it should have easily won.

      Thanks for making my day.
      Fr Aaron

    • jetlife says

      Tipsy…brilliant. “Boom” as my generation would say; or, you truly get it as yours would (as does Fr Aaron). This coming from a young, 30 yr, university (business) educated African American, single mother. Lots of assumed “laziness” in that last sentence alone, right? Nope, my career consists of having worked flex hours from a small home office (a converted bedroom when I purchased my home at the age of 23 years old). I drop my child off and pick her up each day from school and then get right back to work once she’s settled at her little desk working on her studies as her mom finishes up work. I’ve been working since I was 15 years old…and actually smart enough to save and stay away from debt. I’ve held managerial positions for two different fortune 500 companies prior to my current role as a Director (6 years now) with one of the fastest-growing national Inc500 companies. I am now working on obtaining my MBA and a proud soccer mom with a daughter that attends a private Christian academy. Not so lazy, huh? All of my friends and family…same aspirations, dedication and determination. Difference in us and our elders…we now demand flexibility in our work endeavors, we put our family time first, and we work smarter, not harder (thanks to technology, webinars, and skype I can have a meeting with a client in Florida and 10 minutes later have a conference with one in New York with no flights or driving required, less the tried and true firm handshake, of course). So again, I say, “Boom”. I rocked my vote because it seems to we “darker” and “younger” Americans that Obama is looking foward…it seems to us that “he gets us”. :-)

      • jetlife says

        Oh and BTW (by the way), I literally posted the first speech quote Fr. Aaron mentioned to my FB (facebook) page. Word for word…hits home with me. Brought tears to my eyes…what my generation wants the most as Americans is best said “United we stand, divided we fall” or “all for one, one for all”. We don’t mind helping each other out and lifting each other up…we don’t judge one another so harshly…that’s what Christians do. Take a moment and review 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. It’s the only thing that hangs on my office walls.

  3. Don Sherfick says

    Very good points, Tipsy. And maybe rebuilding the GOP begins with reminding those state legislators about to vote for a revised “Indiana Marriage Protection Amendment” (HJR-6) that in 2007 many of the proponents of its predecessor SJR-7 termed “much more moderate” because it only applied to judges, not to the legislature itself. (I remember one constitutional expert in particular saying that.)

  4. jharp says

    I saw the same thing from my old acquaintances on facebook.

    Makes me again realize exactly what a ignorant racist redneck hick town I grew up in.

    And then Tuesday my county went 70% to Romney and 54% to 35% to Mourdock. There is no escaping them.

    • says

      The tendency to subordinate solving a problem to winning an argument is not a useful one.

      The only utility of argument is to get closer to truth, I think – but if you value point-scoring above truth, such closure is not your primary interest.

      [And, BTW, Mike Kole is now up by 2...]

  5. Chris Oler says

    Politics is the application of policy to social and economic conditions. In other words, what government does to solve problems, even if there are none.

    What many people do, and there is some evidence of this in the comments above, is take the approach that the problem is actually the people on the other side. Doug, I am well on the other side of your views. I don’t view you as the problem. The problem is a failure to listen to each other just because you disagree on some things.

    I don’t think I need to tell you this, Doug, but maybe some others that will read it: using epithets to describe our policy positions isn’t the way to open a dialogue. I’m not homophobic, I’m not racist, I’m not sexist, but that is how my policy positions are described.

    If you want compromise, if you want bipartisan cooperation, if you want people to negotiate, then stop being close-minded to others’ views. Sitting here on the other side, that is what infuriates me: that I cannot, in your eyes, rightly hold the views I’ve come to hold over my lifetime of discovery. That intolerance is lazy at best, and possibly an indicator of how much thought you’ve put into your own positions.

    • says

      So you can imagine my reaction when I flipped the radio to find Limbaugh telling his listeners that Democrats were Democrats because they wanted government to give them stuff. Like you said, that kind of shallow dismissive view of the other side is no way to open a dialogue. If it was just some crank on the Internet, that’s one thing. But this is a guy who is paid handsomely because of his vast audience.

      And, in particular, he went on to say that Hispanics were attracted to the Democrats, not because of how Republicans had handled immigration issues, but because they, like other “Democrat” constituencies wanted the government to be Santa Claus. I guess they’re stealing our jobs because they’re lazy.

      Anyway, not listening to blowhards is probably one key element for folks to reach consensus.

    • jharp says

      “If you want compromise, if you want bipartisan cooperation, if you want people to negotiate, then stop being close-minded to others’ views.”

      That takes a lot of gall after the way your side lied and went ballistic over ObamaCare.

      I’m open to opposing views to fix our heath care system. It’s just I haven’t heard any proposals from Republicans in 20 years.

      Unless of course you count ObamaCare as a republican idea. (It was) And yet now they say it’s a govt takeover of health care (it’s not) and will add to the deficit (it reduces the deficit).

      Yeah right. Our side won’t listen to your ideas.

      Give me a break.

    • Carlito Brigante says

      Chris,

      I cannot presume to speak for Doug, but I have spent thousands of hours thinking about the policy proposals the post-1994 Republicans have proposed. I use 1994 because that is the year that the social right-wing of the Republican party ascended to House Leadership. Before that, there was at least a modicum of moderation in the Republican party. I grew up as, and around, moderate Republicans.

      I suspect Doug has spent countless hours examining his positions, also. But he can speak for himself.

      So Chris, I do not view you as the problems. I view the positions that are contained in the Republican Party Platform as the problem.

      So if you want compromise, offer something up. Or at the minimum, suggest come confidence building measures.

    • steelydanfan says

      I’m not homophobic, I’m not racist, I’m not sexist, but that is how my policy positions are described.

      That’s because those things have effective consequences, as well as reflect a number of fundamental assumptions, that are indeed homophobic or racist or sexist in character regardless of what your intentions might be.

      • says

        this is the key. when someone attacks your policy as racist/sexist/etc, that’s not the same as saying that you yourself are “a racist.” you might not even realize why your policy is racist. j smooth is instructive here.

        you complain about “being close-minded to others’ views” but you yourself have closed your mind to the possibility that those who decry racism, sexism, and homophobia in GOP policy might have legitimate grievances.

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