Dear angry white men,
Every blessing you have enjoyed your whole life has come because of all the rest of us. Yes, you are angry and you are not seeing what we do for you, but it’s there all the same. Maybe you lost a job when our economy crashed, or maybe you didn’t manage to get every bit of success that you once imagined, and certainly you don’t see it, but you are surrounded by goodness and beauty that our entire civilization has created for you.
You have running water available, and electricity. You have schools, and bridges, and a clean library that you can walk into. You have stores full of goods. You can go downtown and get your hair cut; you can drive your car through a line and get a meal handed to you straight into the driver’s seat. There have been mothers, and wives, and women down at the church, behind the checkout counters, and in the schools helping you your whole life. Strong workers of every kind are out there picking food, moping floors and helping silently behind the scenes. There are bus drivers and taxi drivers poised and ready each day to drive you places when you need. You can easily get someone to clean your car or mow your lawn.
You have always felt safe walking down the street.
I want to repeat that: you have always felt safe walking down the street.
There are no armed soldiers mounting the ridge over your home. Our governments function. Your city is managed by people who make sure: that water and sewers run correctly, that police are funded and trained, that schools are in session, that parks are available and clean. State officials are keeping roads safe, managing school systems, providing unemployment and state services. Our national government provides us with protected wild areas for hunting, rivers and streams are monitored so they are clean and healthy.
Yes you are angry, but look around. The rest of us are working every day so that you can have all these things… so that we can all have these things.
White nationalism is threatening to destroy democracies across the globe. Those of us who are on the other side of your anger know will happen if you destroy the systems that have brought our country such wealth. If we don’t work together we fall together. The rest of us live even more on the edge than you do, so we can envision what happens when the health and safety of our country is destroyed.
Please don’t destroy us all.
I saw another one of those hate posts about Michelle Obama slide across my Facebook feed today, and realize that we’ve missed the whole point. The post was a picture of Malania Trump and basically said “Finally a classy lady in the Whitehouse… Looking at the monkey made me want to puke.” More disturbing than the post were the comments. There were a few brave souls trying to combat the outright mean racism, and they were pummeled with an ever-escalating series of hate speak. I didn’t comment because I knew that would pass it to my feed, and I didn’t want to subject my friends with that. It was a wake-up call.
I realized we have it all wrong. The whole thing is blindly simple. Today’s climate is caused by only one thing: hate against having a black president. Nothing more, nothing less.
For weeks now, since the election, liberals have been analyzing everything from the Democratic party’s agenda, to not understanding white middle-class economic woes, to the faults of Hillary Clinton. It’s useless. That is just “bla bla bla bla” because it has nothing to do with the phenomenon of Donald Trump.
The thing is that Trump gave people permission to voice their rage. Once they went into it, and opened the floodgate, it was an unstoppable force. It was opening Pandora’s box. All that hate and rage was then poured into Hillary Clinton. That’s why people were willing to believe anything they saw posted about her. That’s why the “final straw” of more emails showing up in the last weeks of the election put a nail in the coffin of us all.
It was one simple thing: hate of a black president.
Suddenly seeing this I can at least understand it. And with understanding perhaps a path can be found to move forward.
Just think about it. Approximately 62,000,000 people in this country have been sitting around for 8 years with a knot in their stomachs every time they see or think about having black people in the Whitehouse. Imagine the rage to see constant pictures of those black faces, black hands, black children. There they are, walking around the beloved Whitehouse, dirtying everything they touch. During this whole time they haven’t heard a single thing that has been said, or noticed a single change. Their rage has been tongue-tied so that they can only mouth sideways, “niggers…” They nod at each other silently. Maybe complain in closed groups, but their ears are shut to details. Facts and figures are meaningless. They are frozen back to the day that Barack Obama was elected. In their minds it is still 2009, they are stuck in their losses of the financial crises. Rage has frozen time. Many have actually transposed their emotions back to 9/11/2001. It’s a deep, gut-wrenching angst, ready to boil over.
And then, suddenly, they were given permission. Not only were they given permission to “speak the truth” but they were given numerous targets on which to unleash their rage. Mexicans, Muslims, gay people, and Jews. That’s why it feels like a regurgitation of hate… because it is.
It’s so hard to see because it is just so blatant. No conscious thinking person would believe that this could be true. We’ve ignored it, and analyzed it to death in every attempt to turn our heads and not really see what’s going on. That deep sense of, “It can’t possibly be true” has colored our thinking.
It’s just like a mystery novel. Usually the culprit is found by following the money. But in this case all we need to do is follow the result. Look at what has happened since the election. There are so many hate crimes happening around the country that the New York Times has started a Hate Watch page. These posts referring to Michelle Obama as a monkey are everywhere. People of color are being yelled at in grocery lines. Just ask any person of color what their lives have been like since the election… I’m sure you’ll hear a story. This is the single, pinpointed, cause.
There is no logic in this at all, so trying to regain our country through “opening up a dialogue” will do no good. Surveys show that Trump voters passionately believe that the economy is worse now than when Obama took office. They believe the stock market has fallen. They believe that “Obama Care” is evil… simply because of the source and the name that has been given to it.
Hillary Clinton took the brunt of it. Bigotry turned to misogyny and was an unstoppable, invisible, force of destruction. On November 8th love didn’t trump hate. It got really, really, close. It would have won without interference, but with the constant barrage of needling against her, hate slipped us into the constitutional nightmare of the Electoral College.
Many people believe that Bernie Sanders would have won if he had gained the Democratic nomination. But I think it would have been just as bad. He was relatively unchallenged at primary time – Hillary was never nasty against him – but Trump would have come up with something. Do you really think we would have elected a Jew after a black? And a socialist at that?? Trump would have named him something like “Commie Bernie” and it would have been all over. No amount of talking about issues would have or could have had the slightest effect on this kind of blind hate.
It’s important to know that it is blind hate. I don’t think that, in the 21st Century, anyone would consciously talk themselves into this amount, or type, of hate. It’s unexamined. It’s a blind repression, deep deep down. It is a serious, deep-gut nag that has been eating away at voters as they sit on their couches and eat potato chips. It was a lethal poison ready to explode.
So what now? What happens now? If you are starting to see that this is as simple as I think it is, then there is actually room for hope.
Trump voters don’t give a twit about Donald Trump. If you listen to any of their arguments for him they have no substance. “He’s a good business man – He didn’t really mean the things he said – He tells the truth.” All that really means nothing more than, “He’s a white man.”
What’s going to happen is that on January 20th they will get to see a white man take the oath of office, and the black family will skulk away. They won!!! Just watching those black faces get into a car and drive off will be the end of it. 62,000,000 people will take a deep breath and turn away. They won’t have to face themselves any longer. They won’t have to grapple with their inner ticking’s. Some of them are really unconscious people and they will go back to drinking beer and scratching their balls. Some of them have better hearts and will start to be available to their communities again. Some of them may even start to notice as the new president does things that they never thought possible to do from the presidency.
After January 20th we may be able to have a conversation about issues again. I hope it’s not too late.
Okay. Our Constitution has failed us, and our communities have failed us, so it’s time to re-coop and re-organize our thinking. I’m sorting this out here to make sure I get it right.
Most important is that we don’t like blacks and we don’t like Jews. I’m not quite sure why these two are lumped together like this, because they have nothing to do with each other, but that’s the way it is. It’s not mine to question why…
I’m pretty sure that we don’t like Jews because it has something to do with money. So the richer a Jew is, probably the worse that is. And the reason to not like blacks is because they are black. But I can’t quite sort out if we dislike them all the same, or if we dislike the blackest ones the worse. I think, probably, the latter is the case… though maybe we just dislike them all. So hard to keep all this clear.
I think that if a person is only a quarter Jew that it’s okay. That’s not enough to make a difference. But I’m pretty sure that a quarter black is still fully black. I know for absolute sure that half black is still 100% black. But what about half Jews? Maybe it has to do with which way they choose to go. If they go to the Christian side, then it might be okay.
We like Japanese just fine. We used to hate them the most. In fact, we had them locked up at one time. But we let them out and we like them just fine now. I think we also like Koreans just fine now as well, mostly because they have been really good Korean wives and have behaved themselves pretty good. I’m not sure about Chinese, but I think we won’t be liking them much longer. Which is a shame, because I can’t tell all these folks apart, so I’m likely to make mistakes.
We don’t like Muslims and that’s for sure. They wear funny hats and stuff, so it’s easy to keep clear. There are some people who wear turbans though, and I think they are some other religion. I’ll have to wait and find out if we hate them or not. I’m sure my neighbors will let me know that straight off.
I don’t think we straight-out dislike Mexicans. After all, they are pretty useful to have around. I think all the bad ones are going to be shipped off, and mostly they just kind of stay quiet, so we don’t really have to worry about it.
We definitely like fetuses, that’s always been agreed on by both sides. But now we don’t give a flying ass-wipe about what happens to them after they are born. We are finally free of the baggage of having to feed and educate the things. That’s a relief!
We like women okay, but only if they are absolutely perfect. First of all, they need to be young and hot, and certainly should not be uppity or get less hot with age. Women are really handy when they are good waitresses, and when they clean up things nicely. Often these women aren’t too hot, but it’s okay as long as they smile all the time.
I think that’s it. Have I left anything out?
Just realized that it is hopeless. For a year I have been waiting for the Republican party to stand up and do what is right, to stick up for their stated values, to stand firm with their own moral code. To at least stand for their Christian values of kindness and charity. Donald Trump is not a Republican, he’s a mean and heartless man, and I’ve never been able to believe that they could not stand firm.
It’s now hopeless. Without the Republican party standing up for unity, truth, justice and statesmanship we are left in the grip of a population whipped into a rage.
Alexander Hamilton forgot one major thing when he created the Electoral College. He didn’t realize what it is like to be trapped inside a population that is whipped into a state of “cabal, intrigue, and corruption” enough to elect a demagogue as president. He didn’t realize that lies would be rampant, that people would believe anything that their demagogue told them, he had no idea about Twitter!
He didn’t realize that the party, that had also be hijacked by the demagogue, would cave in the quest for power. Powerful people would support him in the quest of their own power. Money would follow him. It would be a black hole.
The thing is that Trump supporters will do and believe anything he tells them… and he can tell them in seconds through his Twitter account. He won this election through the smallest margins possible, and brags that it is the biggest victory in history… they believe him. If the press brings in some fact checking they shout that the press is corrupted and liars. It’s a completed trap.
So if something should happen that makes it so Trump is not inaugurated on January 20th there will be a huge riot. They will be mad, and they have guns! They will target the weakest amongst us and it will be very, very ugly. If Trump does not stand down, and it’s unlikely that he will, he will whip his supporters into the worse bloodbath we’ve ever seen in our country.
On the other hand, if Trump is inaugurated we will face a disaster to our values, our freedoms, and our planet’s future. It’s also morally wrong not to stand up against repression, ugliness, and prejudice just because we are afraid.
We are hopelessly in the grips of this heartless and cruel man.
Strangely enough, this realization is a relief. I can stop reaching for hope. It’s very much like receiving a diagnosis of cancer. It means that I have to stop fearing for the future and determine to face each day with strength, grace and intelligence. I need to plan for things to not go well, and yet stay engaged with my community. I need to constantly work to find ways to express myself that will create good outcomes.
This is a fatal flaw in the structure of the Electoral College. We need to give every person in our population an equal vote. The people did get it right this time to the tune of 2.6 million votes ahead for Hillary Clinton. We can’t let the frustrations of middle America rule our country any longer. But this time… our only hope is to start moving in a direction that calms the fears and anger. Do our best to preserve individual freedoms and rule of law. Let the flames die down.
Today I’m sitting in the chemo line. It’s amazing how different the faces are here than in the radiation line.
In the radiation line people pretty much know the percentage of their cancer that is gone, and they are giving it one last shot. Everyone has little hair-doos growing back, and we very rarely throw up. We can chat and discuss our breast scars. We can practice stretching our arms, and discuss lymphedema management. People ring the bell and bring cookies on their last day. It’s always someone’s last day.
In the radiation line our name gets called, and we walk into a little machine where we lay silently and don’t move while a machine buzzes for just a second. The burning grows with each treatment, but you also get to tick off another day until ringing the bell and cookies.
In the chemo line the faces are haunted. It’s the really super-skinny people in wheelchairs that are the most invisible. No one talks much, and any joking is done with hung heads. Many are wearing face masks and don’t look you in the eye. You don’t want to look them in the eye anyway. There is a look in those eyes that no one wants to see.
When your name gets called you get hooked up to a machine that drips poison into your veins. It has a lot of water in it too and makes you pee. They stick a big needle into your port which was surgically implanted into your jugular vein. When it’s done you can pull your little hat over your bald head and silently return home. It’ll be a day or so until you are really sick. You count the hours between when you are supposed to take which medicine for each side effect.
No matter how conservative or liberal, everyone with cancer wants to know what gave it to them. The doctors are absolutely useless. They will talk about dividing cells, and the cellular environment that lays the bed for uncontrolled grown, and statistics. But the people in line, every single one, will agree that it’s environmental pollutants that got us. No matter how conservative a person is, they will admit it. It was something invisible, everywhere and out of our control that slithered inside our bodies and caused a little monster to start growing of its own accord.
Maybe we’re wrong. But what if we’re right? And either way, why do we keep allowing polution against our own, and our children’s, best interests?
We’ve spent our lives hearing about this chemical and that chemical that is a carcinogen. But then we have cancer and get told that nobody knows and that it’s just some random mix-up. Is there one truth for before you get cancer, and another truth for after you get cancer? Couldn’t we simply clean up our world… just in case?
You lost! Get over it! Have you heard that one yet? Of course, this is in reference to the fact that Donald Trump won the presidential election and liberals are going fuck-ass nuts. I’ve heard it a number of times. I’m in Texas.
The scary thing about this is that it is the nice Trump supporters who are saying this. It’s the ones who can actually hear the pain and agony that is going on around them, and they are having a gut reaction to it.
It’s like you are drowning a puppy, and as it’s wiggling and squirming you’re swearing, “Come on, hold still.” Just get it over fast.
(For liberals who don’t understand that analogy please know that drowning puppies is a regular practice in rural America. You didn’t get your dog spayed, and then it goes and has 12 puppies. More than likely you don’t drown all 12, but good farm practice dictates that you weed out at least 6 to 8 of them. Don’t freak out… it’s not the point of this article. It’s just a sick analogy that fits.)
So yes. This is the nice-hearted right-winger. They want us to stop wiggling. They are very sweet in everyday life and will feed you cookies until you pop. They can’t really understand what’s going on, and why we are wiggling around and crying the way we are. They literally don’t see that they are killing our children with their refusal to understand simple economic, political and environmental science. But they hear the pain, they really want us to be quiet and eat another cookie. So when you hear that, don’t get too upset. They really do care. They just don’t understand what it’s all about.
The rest don’t care at all. And some actually take glee in watching the liberal elite melt into a pool of anguish. That makes the win all that more exciting.
Of course there are a few on the right who are straight-out mean-hearted. But that’s a very small minority. Most are just fervent. It’s vital for well-thinking liberals to understand that fundamentalism is apocalyptic. They are working on ushering in the end of the world. That really nice neighbor of yours, with the big caring eyes? She drops off her plate of cookies, and then heads home and falls on her knees to pray for your soul because she knows that you will be heading to Hell here pretty darn quick. It’s her Christian duty to at least do her best for you.
Don’t think I’m making this up. (I’m not making up the puppy thing either.)
Fundamentalist Christianity has more in common with ISIS than the your nice Muslim neighbor who keeps his yard tidy and clean. ISIS is fundamental Islam and fundamental Christianity is fundamental Christianity. Both belief systems are rigid and apocalyptic. If you look at actual statistics of mass shootings in the U.S. you’ll find that the majority of them are committed by Christian fundamentalists – that’s simply because we have a vast majority of Christians available to go nuts. No other reason. If you add them up with a more comprehensive math, you’ll find that mass shootings are mostly committed by fundamentalists (regardless of religion) with a smattering few that are straight-out nut jobs.
An apocalyptic world view is a very stressful thing to hold on to for a full lifetime. It’s kind of okay if things are going well. But if a person comes under stress it quickly becomes too much. Every news cast, every meeting of the Bible club, every conversation over coffee reveals more end-time signs. When you have an apocalyptic fundamentalist view you listen to the news and hear that unemployment is at an all time low of 4.9 percent it sounds like an end-time prophecy. New type of airplane invented? End time for sure… You may hear about bombings in Aleppo… definitely end-time signs. Anything that happens in Israel is end-time-sign times two. You might hear about that nice little girl down the street who went and got herself pregnant… a sure sign of the moral corruption of end times.
It’s stressful. You keep expecting it, and expecting it and nothing really happens. Especially since Democrats keep managing to get elected and even things out. So the only thing a decent person can do is help usher it in. For God’s sake! Quit wiggling!
When fundamentalism is not under stress it will be balanced out by the actual teachings of it’s home religion. This holds true for eastern and western religions as well. Christianity at its heart teaches kindness, neighborliness, forgiveness and love. We have marvelous basic tenets such as: Love your neighbor as yourself, turn the other cheek, blessed are the meek in spirit, do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
When I closely examine my deepest angst over the election of Donald Trump it’s not Trump that I most fear. Actually it really is Trump I fear… but it’s the fact that my neighbors and my country have completely let me down that keeps me wiggling and crying. My head is stuck on, “How could you do this to us? Do you have no sense of decency?” A cry to the Republican party. The people in my country have let me down on the basic tenets of decent morality that I thought we agreed on. I thought we agreed that outright bullying was bad. I thought we agreed that kindness and civility to minorities was a common value. I thought we agreed that sexual predators were not to be rewarded. I thought we agreed that civil discourse of issues was the way we did things and that it was safe and even healthy to argue about facts.
The moral high ground of the Christian right has completely let us down. Not only did they chew me up and spit me out, but they ran the bus over the few righteous politicians they had left, and then backed up the bus and thunked ’em again.
The Republican primary was completely blindsided by Trump. It was so vicious, so unexpected, and so anti-Christian that the massive stage of politicians just sputtered and fell. There were numerous times where the Republican party could have stepped in and done the right thing, could have called an end to the whip-lash, but chose to do nothing.
Liberals were not afraid enough. We got over that now – we’re terrified. We kept being told we were winning, and could not in our wildest dreams have believed what was coming down. Both sides were like zombies in a dream. Sleepwalking over the edge.
I think both sides relied on our common belief that goodness always wins. Liberals thought the universe would let us win this one. Republicans expected us to save them from themselves.
I think republicans are really quite as shocked as we are and don’t know how to wrap their heads around it. I think they secretly expected to lose, so they happily drove themselves to the polls and cast their safe vote for “Their Side”. They are quite anxious for the end times to come just to relieve the stress of waiting for it… and afraid of their own visions at the same time. It works out best for them when we periodically save them from their own madness. They blame us when they lose, get riled up a bit, and then go bake some cookies.
But we lost. It was a shock to everyone. Now, they really want us to stop wiggling and just drown. Get over it! You lost! Move on!
God help us all.
Trumpsplaning is when a Trump supporter tries to reassure you by explaining that Trump surely won’t do the things he said he would do. I’ll explain this clearly in three simple bullet points to make sure it is easily understood.
- They voted for Trump because they thought he wouldn’t do the things he said he would do.
- They voted for Trump because they believed he wouldn’t do all those things he said he would do.
- They voted for Trump because surely he didn’t mean all those things he said.
That’s just about as simple as I can ‘splane it to you… and these are the nice Trumpsters. They are feeling a little twinge of remorse over how upset you are. The other ones don’t give a shit. They are still wearing their, “String her up” T-shirts.
Trump is a poop head.
If we would have sat down together, fifty years ago, and said “Let’s create a world” – we would not have created this world.
We would have never in our wildest dreams have created a world where big business holds no responsibility over what they produce. We would never had said, “Hey I know! Let’s make a world where big businesses can create any kind of mess they want, and never have to clean it up.” We would never have have said, “And also, let’s make sure the toxins they spill into the world cause cancer (cause that’s such a fun and profitable disease) and let’s set it up so that the more a business sidesteps decency the more money and power they get, until controlling them is completely impossible.”
We wouldn’t have done it.
We would never have created a world where slick advertising moguls use their awesome manipulative skills to sway uneducated voters to go along, happily, with ideas and policies that are completely against their self-interest. Fifty years ago we would have never imagined that we could become a country that doesn’t believe in science.
Fifty years ago progressive thinkers would have been Republicans. We would have never imagined that our party would take a downward plunge into valuing big business over people’s rights. We would have never envisioned that it was possible to ignore decades of clear evidence that we are poisoning and fouling our environment. We would not have seen that as good government, or smart for business. We would have been proud of our history with Abraham Lincoln. We would have studied Trickle Down Economics and gone, “What???” We would have studied our fore-fathers and learned from their worries about what might happen if mean-spirited, fear-based politics won the day.
Fifty years ago if anyone had said, “Hey, I have a good idea. Let’s fill our air, soil and water with dangerous chemicals for half a century and see what happens.” Everyone would have said… NO!
Just saying. It’s clear madness. We don’t have to continue doing it now.
All the pollution on the planet has happened in our lifetimes, folks. It’s our fault. Though there was a lot of carbon pollution and the like for the last several thousand years, the explosion in plastics and chemical manufacturing has happened since World Wars I and II. We are living in a cesspool of chemicals.
When I first was diagnosed with cancer I was ashamed. I thought I hadn’t been organic enough, had allowed myself to be subjected to too many carcinogens, somehow. Had not lived pure enough. That it was my fault. I hid away in my house and endured Chemotherapy alone for six months. I had a 40% chance to live.
And then I watched the meanness and brainlessness of the election, before and after, and saw all hope of a slow path towards environmental sanity evaporate into thin air. And I realized… why should I (or anyone for that matter) have to live a life completely removed from society in order to stay well????
Why do we accept carcinogens as a norm?
There was an excuse before the 60’s. It was great fun to be prosperous and to have all the cheap goods that we want. We were clueless back then, just having a good time. But then came Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” and people who were paying attention woke up and started trying to clean up the environment and make a sane world for human beings to live in. What the hell happened to everyone else!
Why have you agreed to the policies that have poisoned me? Why have you poisoned my daughter?
It’s been over fifty years folks – and we have apparently gotten nowhere. In the 2016 election a minority of voters proved once again that they are the dups of big business. You are all walking around right now scratching your balls and saying stuff like “I’m against big government – I’m worried about my guns – I heard that Hillary Clinton was corrupt” But you’ve voted this way for half a century! What the hell is wrong with you?
Do you all have any idea how many people have cancer? It’s not normal, it’s not good. Do you know how many people have diabetes, heart disease, digestive disorders, high blood pressure?… all diseases caused by our poisoned food supply, gasoline-spewn air, and chemical-laden water. And you remain brainwashed by pundits selling trickle down economics.
You believe in conservative values but you don’t believe in conserving the very planet on which we live?
If you have been voting Republican your whole life this is your fault. Democrats are not a whole lot better – but that’s a different story. Democrats are at fault because of their ineffectiveness. Democrats at least acknowledge the problem, but are powerless against the same big business oligarchy that has everyone brainwashed. But if you’ve been voting Republican, and wasting your braincells “thinking” about politics through the skewed eyes of ignorance and prejudice – then it is your fault.
We have all the skills and knowledge to make a beautiful, clean and healthy world. Cleanness is not anti-business – it is smart business – it is moral business. It’s the Christian thing to do. It’s the Buddhist thing to do. It’s the Islamic thing to do. Homes can be clean. Water can be clean. Transportation can be clean. Businesses can thrive and prosper in a clean environment. We can have fun, exciting, productive lives by learning as we go how to best live on the planet. This shouldn’t even be a discussion.
There is no reason whatsoever that I should have cancer – except that we can’t have a decent science-based discussion in politics. It’s because you, I say YOU, allow yourself to be fooled and then turn around and voted, viciously, from your ignorance. You think it’s funny, but I sit every day in the chemo and radiation lines with the people who are suffering from your neglect. There is this certain “deer in the headlights” look in everyone’s eyes.
There is no reason that I should have to hide from the food, water and air in the “best country in the world” in order to be healthy. There is no reason that we can’t clean ourselves up. Cleanliness is next to Godliness… remember that? It applies to us all, to the way we live, to the decisions we make together.
It’s going to happen to you, sooner than you think. As you sit there with the chemo lines dripping into your veins think about how we all live together. Is this really what we want? We are not powerless against it – though we certainly feel powerless against each other. Today, my fellow community members, we are powerless against each other’s ignorance.
Remember… all the pollution on the planet has happened in our lifetime. In our lifetime!!! That’s us, people. That’s us.