Saturday, February 18, 2012

Um, could you repeat that?

Ramblings Post #181
Sometimes, it turns out that you don't have it all figured out, you don't know what just happened and you need a minute to realize that you're not only not in Kansas anymore, you're not quite sure if you even ever were in Kansas. It's suddenly realizing it's really night time, or the shirt you thought was blue is really see through hot pink. And you're wearing it right now.

Mad Magazine's Spy v. Spy

As I waited for my Friday morning class to start, I listened to a pair of guys (because they were speaking across seven seats) rationalize taking away the right to vote for the vast majority of citizens and walk themselves through a justification of unlimited corporation contributions as a good in the election process. They used half a piece of ancient Greek logic and one or two other concepts that never would have occurred to me. This is in law school. That they spoke without a trace of irony, in conversational tones, made me realize just how broad the thinking is even in a small room. I realize as an attorney that we're taught to argue both sides, but let me put the conservatives nightmares to rest as colleges are not quite yet the unbridled drum circle of liberal brainwashing that they think they are. That was not an exercise.

To be honest, there is that FB friend, the one with the Obama out of countdown desktop app, I will admit whose purpose is to keep me apprised of the general thoughts of the conservatives. He repeats the party-line talking points and muses how every little thing he doesn't like about the current administration is grounds for its immediate dismissal. His presence and rather frequent posts remind me that everyone doesn't see things like I see them, doesn't think like me. More, because he links stuff, I get to see where some of the conservative thinking originates. It's fascinating. I feel a little like a social anthropologist at times.

Now, I'm a firm believer that no one side is totally right and the other is totally wrong, a concept touted by so many of the pundits. Or that one side is evil, or that one side has God's endorsement, any of the messages being floated. Some of the rhetoric to date has gotten out of hand, but then when you're running for President, or really any position worth having, some hyperbole is to be expected. Lately, in my opinion, its been getting too out of hand. There is playing to win, then there is playing to injure.

The thing I think everyone seems to have forgotten in our hustle and bustle to come up with a solution to our litany of issues, is that no one really wants disaster. Yes, despite allusions to the contrary, every figure in history eventually vilified by their actions started out with a noble cause or a great plan. We need to remember that very few are truly evil, and that the constant references to everyone but the speaker being against all that's good probably needs to be dialed back just a touch.

For the record, I found no merit in my classmates plan to disenfranchise gross amounts of the American populous and fundamentally change the electoral process in this country. That idea of The American President... brought to you by Coca Cola and Walmart and what would surely be the the creation of a permanent gentrified class didn't phase them makes me wonder what other ideas are out there that I really need to see the logic that they're working with. One of the classes I'm taking this semester is in the fine are of Negotiation, and one of the techniques they stress is separating the interests from the issue. I think we all need more of that in modern society.

I wanted to ask these guys are we (as a country) still interested in freedom for all people? Or just those who can afford it? Do we as a people still believe in the idea that "any kid can be the President" or now are we just giving that lip service? Having we finally reached the point where the American Dream is now reserved for only those of proper station?

Because if so, then I think we need to have a whole different talk about what you think America means.

Barkeep, didn't mean to get all patriotic, but I'm still trying to figure out who they're taking their country back from.

No comments: