This Is Awesome!

Scientific American Endorses Joe Biden

“We’ve never backed a presidential candidate in our 175-year history—until now. This year we are compelled to do so. We do not do this lightly.”

I have nothing to add … except read the article.

****************************
Thanks to Gary @Escaping Christian Fundamentalism for bringing this to my attention.

Politics of Humiliation

My son, a Christian who hates strongly dislikes Trump, sent me an article entitled, “Who can win American’s politics of humiliation?” It was written by Thomas L. Friedman, a columnist for the NY Times. While I wasn’t all that impressed with the article in toto, I did find parts of it relevant to today’s political landscape.

Since the NY times requires you to subscribe before you can read their online articles, I’m just going to reprint some of the relevant parts. If you are a subscriber or have some “free” articles available to you (I had 2 left), here is the link. For everyone else …

[…]

It has been obvious ever since Trump first ran for president that many of his core supporters actually hate the people who hate Trump, more than they care about Trump or any particular action he takes, no matter how awful.

The media feed Trump’s supporters a daily diet of how outrageous this or that Trump action is — but none of it diminishes their support. Because many Trump supporters are not attracted to his policies. They’re attracted to his attitude — his willingness and evident delight in skewering the people they hate and who they feel look down on them.

[…]

People will absorb hardship, hunger and pain. They will be grateful for jobs, cars and benefits. But if you make people feel humiliated, they will respond with a ferocity unlike any other emotion, or just refuse to lift a finger for you. As Nelson Mandela once observed, “There is nobody more dangerous than one who has been humiliated.”

By contrast, if you show people respect, if you affirm their dignity, it is amazing what they will let you say to them or ask of them. Sometimes it just takes listening to them, but deep listening — not just waiting for them to stop talking. Because listening is the ultimate sign of respect. What you say when you listen speaks more than any words.

[…]

When George Floyd was being held down by three policemen, one with a knee on his neck, as he pleaded for his mother and onlookers filmed on their phones, he was not just being restrained — he was being humiliated. 

[..]

Unless Biden finds a way to speak to the sense of humiliation felt by many working-class voters … even Trump’s failure to deal with the pandemic may not be enough to turn these voters against him.

[…]

Trump’s goal in this campaign is to separate Biden from Biden voters by making it as difficult as possible for Biden voters to vote. Biden’s goal should be to separate Trump from Trump voters by showing that he respects them and their fears — even if he does not respect Trump.

There’s more, but I think you get the idea.

So I guess the question is: How many of us have the patience and forbearance to do as Mr. Friedman suggests — show respect towards Trump supporters and listen to their concerns?

And more importantly, how many think Biden will be able to convince Trump’s supporters that he respects them and acknowledges their fears?

Reblog: What if the president really is a very stable genus?

EXCELLENT perspective that all of us should read and think about.

Twitter for Longer Thoughts

Early in the morning on January 6, 2018, the president took to the new era bully pulpit, Twitter, to defend his mental stability. In an infamous tweetstorm, one which coined a future book title, he proudly labeled himself, among other things, “a very stable genius.” Like many of his tweets it was met with wide-ranging responses; critics cited its absurdity, supporters defended his overconfidence, but most able-minded people agreed on one thing: this statement was not true. But what if it was?

I’m going to ask you to entertain a thought experiment. It will not be enjoyable or hopeful or comical, nor will it use scientific methods or concrete data. It will be based on perspective and examples with which we’re familiar. As I seek to legitimize a claim many find irrational, I wonder if this framing can help us understand, genius or not, how to counteract easy-to-consume bias and…

View original post 1,481 more words

Masking and All That Crap

“I think they’ve made the masking and the distancing and all that crap a political issue. They use it to depress the economy and put people out of work.”

This was a comment made at a local “Cruise for Trump” rally. According to the newspaper article, approximately 100 people attended. Only a few wore masks. MANY wore Trump hats.

It continues to amaze me that there are individuals who are convinced mask regulations and restricted employment are “political.” But then, this is the claim of their esteemed (and worshiped) leader so what else would they think?

Another person at the rally talked about how the “mental toll” of social distancing has made life hard for a lot of folks. He went on to say … All of us are concerned about keeping ourselves and our neighbors health and whatnot, but this has gone on too long(Emphasis mine.)

“This. Has. Gone. On. Too. Long.”

Again and again the prevailing opinion among Trump-supporters is that we should just return to normal living. Ignore the virus. Everyone go back to work. Party hardy. If people get sick and die … well, how sad, too bad.

I suppose I’ll never understand this kind of thinking. From my perspective, the appearance of this virus is not now and never has been a “political issue.”

Even though Trump has made it one.

And then there are those who continue to believe trained and experienced medical professionals are wrong. That it’s all blown out of proportion and, in actuality, the body simply has to produce the necessary antibodies to ward off the virus.

As one well-known (albeit unqualified) individual recently stated: “The key to beating COVID isn’t dining through glass or never going to a concert or a ball game again. It’s your immune system.”

So you see, folks … not to worry. Trump and friends are in control and it will all be over sooner than you think.

***************************************
Image by Asad Nazir from Pixabay