Weary Pilgrim – The Way I see It
No-Fat-Thanks-Chance-Momma……this was a saying we had back in the day for refusing to accept the current reality…..gotta say, today’s current reality makes all the other ones look pretty good….
So how upside-down is today’s political scene? Well, for openers, the modern Republican party, the palace of Ronald Reagan, just can’t quite bring itself to vilify the Russians….and trust me on this, Reagan HATED the Russians.
As a culture, we opened the door to fake news and election-meddling with our love of all things online….once we embraced Facebook, instant access to online media, and belief in the Digital Word, we invited the Trojan Horses of Bits and Bytes into our parlor….and they seem to be pretty comfortable there.
I won’t bore you with my personal politics. Suffice it to say that my liberal friends worry I’m too conservative, and my conservative friends are positive I’m too liberal. My own major concern these days is that the actions of the Man in the Big White House will end up being the death of the Republican Party. And I’m pretty sure the reason we have the world’s oldest living constitution is that we have been, for the most part, a nation of two political parties.
I believe that most Americans are untied in certain beliefs…..let me pose some examples:
Immigration – there really ISN’T room for all anymore, but seeing as how at some point most of our ancestors caught the boat, we need to allow some measured form of immigration…..a wall is ludicrous, but measures intended to discourage illegal immigration are a good idea…..we want to feel safe. But we tend to forget that most terrorists came here on a tourist visa – they didn’t slip under barbed wire in the dead of night.
Gun Control – like a lot of my neighbors, I own a few guns…like a lot of my neighbors, I don’t own an assault rifle….if you think you need an assault rifle for legitimate hunting purposes, you need to spend more time at the range. The NRA, once a terrific organization for hunting and general firearm safety, is now dedicated to money and power. And the children of America have woken up to the fact that the members of congress simply are not concerned about their safety enough to stand up to the NRA.
I have a news flash for both political parties: these kids mean business. Not only to they have the zeal of youth, their backs are against the wall. And in a few years they will be old enough to vote. How do you think their collective vote will go? To answer that, how effective do you think the current congress will be in adopting effective gun control?
I’m of the opinion that congress couldn’t hold a bake sale if it were giving away double-filled Oreos. When they fail to keep out children safe, I think you can make book that we will start to see a new host of candidates, ones that will pledge to actually pass gun controls. If you think this is wildly optimistic, imagine the tenor of our youth after the next school shooting…….isn’t that a sad sentence? Because the best thing that could happen is that we never have another one again. What are the chances?
Fake news- this one is tough, because it keeps coming……and once again, I have to place it at the door of the Russians……you have to hand it to them, they have this one down…..the Brits used to have a formidable intelligence service, MI6…..they were the standard bearers in dis-information and de-stabilizing their considered enemies. Now the Russians appear to be the past masters at this – and you can only imagine their joy at how well they have done.
For we are at each other’s throats, from morning talk-show hosts to late night comics, we live for our scorn, a scorn born from fear and uncertainty. This is abetted by politicians on both sides. What I find somewhat uplifting is the sign that there are certain figures willing to break from the sidelines and talk about the middle. Witness Jeff Flake, a committed conservative who is openly critical of Trump. Witness Seth Moulton, a Democrat congressman openly critical of Nancy Pelosi.
Our enemies are having a field day witnessing our willingness to run around the mulberry bush with our hair on fire. We need to remember what is was like when the likes of Tip O’Neill and Ronald Reagan would double date late into the evenings on the same day they would give news conferences in open opposition of each other.
By the way, this whole problem of fake news and the Big Lie isn’t exactly new. In 1710, Jonathan Swift wrote:
“Besides, as the vilest Writer has his Readers, so the greatest Liar has his Believers; and it often happens, that if a Lie be believ’d only for an Hour, it has done its Work, and there is no farther occasion for it. Falsehood flies, and the Truth comes limping after it; so that when Men come to be undeceiv’d, it is too late; the Jest is over, and the Tale has had its Effect…”
All I can say is….No-Fat-Thanks-Chance-Momma.