Monday, July 18, 2005

It's amazing to me the hypocrisy people exhibit in their daily lives when dealing with those who have opposing viewpoints. Given the fact that we live in a country founded on the principles of self-determination it's quite sad actually. Currently this country is acting like spoiled children in a shouting match on a playground fighting over who gets the swingset.

The number of rational people is swiftly dwindling into oblivion. There are a few left and they have no problem with people disagreeing with them as long as it's in a thoughtful manner designed to elicit a discussion as opposed to simple name-calling. As amusing as it can be to occasionally read references to 'wingnuts' or 'moonbats' it should be in the realm of humor that those labels are used. If you are incapable of forming a logical counterpoint to someone's argument then why resort to name-calling? All you do then is make it into a contest over who can yell louder. A "Tastes Great!! Less Filling!!" competition doesn't benefit anyone. When people realize that this country and it's people are not well-served by diatribes and personal attacks there will be a lot of politicians and pundits out of jobs.

There are those recently who advocate moving away from rational argument and moving to the internet version of verbal assault. One in particular comes to mind. He "blogs with a hammer" as others have said. Here's his post wherein he basically goes, "I'm not gonna bother being civil or rational cuz you won't" and then says it's okay because he doesn't expect to convince people. Well, if you abuse people and point fingers then you don't have to worry about convincing anyone of anything other than you're a rude, abrasive person. Don't worry about bringing anyone around to your point of view. We'll find our own that probably won't agree with yours.

The really funny thing about his premise is that it is completely opposite of what most on the left, and probably him as well, would espouse as a viable face to put to society. We constantly hear arguments about how we need to get rid of the death penalty because that makes us no different than the criminals yet Mr. Leiter is happy to throw civility out the window and has no concerns with being no better than his opponents. We are told to be tolerant and understanding, usually from people on the left, of everything that should be abhorrent to us as Americans but will the left apply their own standards to themselves? Of course not. That would be too much like right. If you disagree with them, you are branded as any number of things up to and including a traitor.

For those on the right thinking I'm on your side I hate to break it to you, but I'm not. The right is now in control of the entire government(save judicial and even that may not last) and they've resorted to the exact same kinds of tactics that had the left so vilified for so many years. The right is launching personal attacks and smear campaigns against their opponents and show no signs of stopping. For the 'moral' party this is disappointing. For an elected official with a JOB to do it's unforgivable. Unfortunately, with so many people agreeing with Mr. Leiter's views that this kind of activity is okay it appears that nothing will change anytime soon. Until we can get past the idea that yelling and browbeating are acceptable in our daily lives we can expect no real changes in the way our government is run and even less change in the solidarity of the USA's citizenry.

I challenge all of you out there to not fall into the trap the people such as Mr. Leiter have. Maintain your standards of civility and dignity. Do not succumb to the desire to tell the person screaming at you where they can go or what they can do. The moment you do that you've only validated their actions for them. Demand better from our elected officials in their dealings with each other. This isn't some pointless squabble over a sandbox. This is not about personal power or oneupmanship. This is about the governing of the greatest and most powerful nation in the world. We CANNOT allow it to descend into petty infighting. Take the country back from the screamers and the whiners and the mudslingers. Let's make America stand for something again.

Before it's too late.


At 10:54 PM, Anonymous Eric said...

Silly Mindwyrm, trying to be rational and positive. What are you thinking? The moonbats and wingnuts are having none of that, let me tell you! Or, should I call them the wingbats?

At 2:48 PM, Blogger Mindwyrm said...

I don't even want it to be positive necessarily. Sarcasm is very rarely uplifting but is almost always based on a rational premise. Cynicism is fine. Personal attacks because you can't actually fault that persons arguments are not. Hell, if I wanted everything to be positive, I'd have to delete my own blog. :)


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