Blind Ideology – a True Four-Letter Word
By Jim Kuiken
Has everyone gone crazy? Politics and ideology are destroying the fabric of America! We’ve never seen a country so divided before!
Well…if you ignore the Civil War, the McCarthy era, the ‘60’s (VietNam, Civil Rights, etc.), and other minor incidents like those over the last 200+ years…
Most everyone has their own ideology and considers themselves right, open-minded, inclusive…until someone disagrees with them. Then in too many cases now-a-days, tolerance goes right out the window and degenerates to (or starts with) personal attacks. The other person is a fascist, a communist, immoral, a bigot, misogynist, feminazi, etc., etc. Heck, even the families (children, grandchildren, spouses, etc.) are fair game now.
I get demonizing your opponent – everything they do is bad, and you have to twist everything they do and only show the negative, because if they don’t agree with you and your philosophy/ideology, they must be an inherently bad person...(Nixon, Carter, Clinton, Bush, Obama, Trump). “But wait – the guy I don’t like really is a bad person, not like those others! S/he will destroy this country!” Yeah…
I wish this were just an aberration, but it seems to be intensifying. But it’s not something that hasn’t been seen before. Just see some of the articles I’ve written over the last couple of years.
Where has all the civility gone? “Civility Lost”
And is “resistance” really a winning strategy? When someone uses blind ideology as the constant answer to everything, nothing actually gets done. It’s like I used to say when I started my “Green Business” company (Verdant Strategies). When I had people coming on board a “Corporation” that were hard-core eco-warriors, how in the heck was all that supposed to work? I’d tell them that they were welcome to stand out on the street corner holding signs and yelling at people about saving the environment…or…they could join the team and help us show corporations and government agencies how to make and/or save money (i.e., profit – usually fairly significant) by using our services. Then I asked them which method they thought would have more impact on the environment…ticking people off or showing them how to improve their bottom line and make/save money? Which do you prefer, a stick or a carrot?
Pretty much the same with “Making Government Work”. If you want to look petulant and childish, you can “be the party of No” or “be the party of Resistance” (and the difference is?), or you can do what the legislative and executive branches are designed to do, and work with others, and come out with a compromise that neither side may be particularly happy with, but both can make work.
And shouting down others, not even letting them speak or engaging them in debate and an exchange of ideas? If someone is all for freedom, as long as it is on their terms, then that is pretty much the definition of totalitarianism. That’s why we have “The First Amendment”. It’s first for a reason – the most important Amendment to safeguard actual freedom.
But wait, you mean actually let people that I don’t agree with speak? What if they say something that I don’t like? Why can’t I make them stop that and just say what I want them to say, believe like me so they can be right too? They might say something I don’t like, and “That’s Offensive” to me…
Way back during the campaign phase of this cycle, I even talked about what candidates did that I looked out for, and what I looked for in candidates (who would end up transitioning from campaigning to eventually governing…hopefully as a Servant-Leader). I hate to say that my article may have been a bit prophetic (especially the last paragraph), “Inside a Political Campaign”.
And now everyone is talking politics.
‘They must be completely stupid, or just evil, or they’d see that I’m the one that’s right. They argue with cold logic, they don’t have a heart. They’re just cruel and inhumane.’
‘They must be completely stupid, or just evil, or they’d see that I’m the one that’s right. They argue with emotions, don’t understand plain simple logic. They’re just immoral and angry.’
Who’s right, and who’s a disgusting animal that doesn’t agree with me? Fine, “Let’s Talk Politics”, and you’ll see that we don’t have to agree to get along, we just have to agree to get along!