I Don’t Understand–But, Then Again, I Do

What the hell is going on right now?

I feel like I’m watching a replay of a PBS series on civil rights. When did I go asleep and wake up in 1957?

I’m probably a couple of days of outrage behind you. This weekend, we did a day-trip on Saturday and had a pre-func wedding beach party on Sunday. I’ve gotten to the stage where I may glance at my phone, but if I don’t, I know the world will keep spinning and I can check on things when I settle down.

While driving, my very plugged-in wife Victoria was reading her Facebook posts and commented that something was happening back in Charlottesville.  Then, she followed that by saying there was a protest march in downtown Seattle.

I’ve already hit my limit on protest marches. I mean, seriously, people taking to the streets to emphasize how much they’re against what everyone is already against. Yes, it’s a right. March your brains out. But what happens is that something goes wrong–an injury, an arrest, thugs infiltrate and cause problems, store windows break, or police are pushed and a riot breaks out.

Protest marches are just a live version of your Facebook page.  The people marching are the ones who spend their social media time trying to convince you to think the way they do, even though there’s never any actual convincing done. If you agree with what’s said, you pass it along or give it a ‘Like’.  If you disagree, but want to preserve the friendship, you hide it, and long for the days of cat videos.

HBO did a phenomenal job of capturing the hate of Charlottesville  in this video, which I’ll warn you, is hard to watch. But it gives you a real picture of what’s going on in the disturbed minds of the White Nationalists.

This is where I’m torn. I don’t want to give them a minute of news time or any coverage, whatsoever.  All it becomes is a platform by which they can flush out all of the other hate-mongers that lurk in this country.  When I finally got the details about all that went on during the weekend, I was outraged like you. But at least I was able to enjoy a couple of nice days.

We need to deal with bigotry and hate. We can’t ignore the threat of Nazi-ism.  That we even have to be talking about this 80 years after it’s blight on humanity is dumbfounding.  The moron who drove through people and killed one of the protestors was a 20-year-old brain-washed hick. Sadly, there are still people teaching hate and raising their kids with that kind of fear. This photo struck me particularly hard when I came across it yesterday.

My first reaction was, “Well, there you go.  Kids are being raised to hate.”  Then I read about the picture. It wasn’t from this past weekend–it was from an event 20 years ago. For all we know, that little girl could have been among this weekend’s Nazi-marchers.

We absolutely need to take this threat seriously, but those White Nationalists are but a small, tiny portion of the U.S. population. There’s a lot more of us than the haters. And as much as we’re disgusted by what they say and believe, they’re guaranteed the right of free speech, just like us. However,  they’ll only be talking to themselves if we ignore them.  Like so many things, from O.J. to the Kardashians, this is being turned into a media event and a hot topic, so that every newscast every 15 minutes feels the need to be talking about it.

I think every one of those pro-Nazi demonstrators should have their eyeballs taped open and be forced to watch, “The Boy in the Striped Pajamas“, which we happened to watch over the weekend. After that, “American History X“. Although, I’m sure in both cases, they would dismiss them as purely propaganda films.

I had higher hopes for this president, in trying to make the most out of a dismal situation.  I basically considered it survival mode.  I wanted to just ride out these four years and hope that someone credible would step forward in the meantime. Then we’d all say, “Well, that’s a no-brainer.” I’m still waiting for a leader to make themselves known.

With President Trump, we have no idea what’s going to happen in six months, let alone the next six minutes.  However, I am convinced that, years from now, there will come a time we’ll all be able to look back and say to each other, “Can you believe that actually happened?”

Keep believing. Good will prevail.

Tim Hunter

 

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