Thursday, March 3, 2016

Mad as Hell

I’m mad as hell. Just like Howard Beale in “Network” who screamed the catch phrase forty years ago – there’s a lot to be mad at. I’m mad as hell that: 
  • The economy isn’t as strong as it could be and millions of people are out of work and underemployed.
  • That the U.S. is now $19 trillion in debt and growing at half-a-trillion per year because government can't spend what it brings in.
  • Medical care is so outrageously expensive.
  • Obamacare is thought of as healthcare rather than an insurance program.
  • Congress can’t find a way of compromising and voters re-elect their representatives at a rate in excess of 95%.
  • Social Security is going to be bankrupt by the time I am eligible.
  • Senators have preemptively declared that no nominee to the Supreme Court from the President will even be considered.
  • Government in Flint, MI poisoned its people in the name of efficiency.
  • Al Jazeera America is going off the air – leaving viewers with no options for unbiased reporting on television.
  • Airline travel is so difficult and uncomfortable.
  • Every major weather event now has a name.
  • President Obama maintains a personal kill list – serving as judge, jury and executioner on his own.
  • The Fourth Amendment is considered quaint instead of an established right.
  • The Pentagon has never passed an audit. Ever. In its entire history. In fact, it can't even balance its books with billions of dollars disappearing each year.
  • The Second Amendment is considered sacrosanct when common sense protocols ("well regulated") would save lives.
  • Wars are started and waged without Congressional approval as required.
  • Police shoot people of color first at an alarming rate and won't use other methods available to them.
  • The First Amendment is undermined by an Administration that jails journalists as ‘traitors’ for doing their jobs.
  • The NSA continues to gather and monitor data from everyday people (worldwide now) but has shown an inability to use that data to stop terrorist attacks.
  • Agent Carter is already over for the year.
  • The Democratic leading candidate makes Mitt Romney look like a model of consistency with her flip-flops, misrepresentations and fabrications on a range of issues.
  • The GOP’s #2 candidate for President prays for and attended rallies that support the extermination of LGBT people.
  • The Anglican Communion is punishing the Episcopal Church for letting LGBT people marry.
  • The media reports the delegate count for the Democrats as if the Super Delegates already have cast their votes (which doesn’t happen until July) giving the illusion that Hilary Clinton is the defacto candidate when its still a horse-race with Bernie Sanders.
  • Social media is filled with meme’s and half-truths and rants from people on all sides who should know better and who have stooped to the same low level of those they're criticizing.
  • Voters have to jump through hurdles to exercise their duty as citizens, especially if they are not wealthy and white.
  • Transgender people are being killed at a record rate across the U.S..
  • There are 28 lobbyists to each elected representative in Washington DC (over 15,000).
  • The GOP’s leading candidate is an egocentric maniac with no plans, plenty of hyperbole and encourages violence while espousing a level of hate speech that would not be allowed on most college campuses today.

And the list can go on and on. There's a lot to be mad about. It’s this last one where I can’t even blame the candidate Trump totally anymore. What I’m really mad at is that my fellow citizens, my fellow Americans, my fellow humans are so paralyzed by  fear, misinformation and a lack of faith in our system of government that Donald J. Trump is seen as the savior and is now the leading candidate for the nomination for President for the Republican party. This has happened because people are voting for him. It’s not the leadership of the GOP, it’s not the media, it’s voters making a deliberate choice. It’s them that I’m not just mad at – I’m disappointed in.

Will the world go to hell and a hand-basket with a President Trump? No. The Constitution is strong enough to survive him. And, frankly, if there’s anything that Mitch McConnell has demonstrated in the past eight years it’s a case study in how to undermine a popularly elected President from getting anything done that he wants to. Don’t get me wrong: it’d be embarrassing, horrible, dangerous and devastating…but it would not be the end of the world as we know it.

We need to recognize the anger that I have and that others have. We need to realize that we aren't all going to get our way. Years of therapy have shown me that is not effective to meet that anger with more anger a-la-Trump (or even Sanders) but instead acknowledge it and find ways to build a path towards reconciliation and understanding. And it starts with each of us today with those whom we disagree with.

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