Friday, September 28, 2018

Free Fallin'

The current furor over the potential appointment of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court is a perfect example of why we find ourselves so polarized as a society. The only voices that are heard are people who have fixed and immovable positions. He’s a rapist or she’s a liar. That’s basically it. There are some offshoots of those arguments, but they are basically anchored in one or the other premise. And herein lies the problem. TRUTH and FACTS are no longer necessary for us, as a whole, to take intractable positions.

The idea that rational thought is a thing of the past is horrifying, but I honestly don’t see a way to turn this around. As social media continues to grow as the de facto news source for the majority of Americans, we get farther and farther away from the search for TRUTH. The TRUTH, has become our truth. If I believe it, then it’s true. That’s the new national creed.

It would be interesting to get into an honest and open conversation about the current situation on Capitol Hill, but what would that conversation be based on? The only thing we have to go on is the 40 year old recollection of two people. I believe that Dr. Ford was assaulted and I believe that she believes that Brett Kavanaugh was the person who assaulted her. I also believe that Mr. Kavanaugh is not the saint that he paints himself out to be (who could be?). I believe that he and his friends certainly did things that crossed many lines (both of decorum and the law). However, when it comes to the particular incident in question, he has denied any participation or knowledge of it.  
So where does that leave us in the age of individual truth? It leaves us in opposite castles using catapults to launch bombs at each other. We are incapable of discussing the matter without claiming the other side is absolutely wrong. We reserve just as much anger for those who refuse to take sides, because in the age of individual truth, you are either with us or an idiot/racist/rapist/communist/liar/abuser.

In an age of unfettered access to information, we have managed to become less informed, less aware, less reasoned and less intelligent. We have become petty and selfish as a nation. We have become about the battle and we are no longer about the war. We are shortsighted to a fault. I have no idea how this Kavanaugh situation will resolve itself and frankly, I don’t care. The Heritage foundation has a long list of candidates lined up if this nomination were to fail. They all have similar conservative pedigrees and they will aid in pushing the court firmly to the right.

There will be those on the left who will be filled with great joy if this nomination fails. They will feel some sense of accomplishment. Not because anything was really accomplished in the long run, but hey, a win is a win. A win for individual truth!

I want to pass along some TRUTH. I wrote this back in July of 2016 when I heard the wave of indifference that was being pointed in Hillary Clinton’s direction,

We can be thoughtful and careful when we decide who to vote for in November.
We can act like children and decide to take our toys home. I always thought that people who consider themselves liberal/progressive/socialist had a bigger world view than their own front door. I always thought that it was the conservative/republicans/libertarians who would only think of themselves. I thought they were the ones who could be talked into voting against their own self-interest. 

I can boil this election down to three words: THE SUPREME COURT. If you don't understand the ramifications of those three words, then frankly, you shouldn't be voting.”

I will end this the same way I ended that particular rant from 2 years ago…And that is all I have to say about that.