About That Eye Plank…

We’ve all heard about the nastiness of today’s political climate and the countless reasons as to why; social media, devolving of culture, the length of the campaign season or even the candidates themselves.

I’d say they all play a role but that the main driver of vitriol is we the people. We all like to think we value other’s opinions and give them their respective due, but seriously, have you been in a political conversation lately? If it’s between people with opposing views there is apt to be very little conversing going on and lots of judging based on false, negative assumptions.

For example, I hate poor people. Or so I’ve been told. I’ve also been called selfish, heartless, a tool of big business, uncaring, ignorant and my all time favorite, a disgrace to my gender. I’m kind of proud of that one actually.

Why all the hate?  Apparently my preference for free market capitalism, limited government and individual freedom makes me as popular as a heart attack in some circles and justifies an enormous amount of contempt by my morally superior betters.


No boo hooing for me though as I expect this treatment when wading through the noxious swampland of Internet comment sections and am rarely bothered by it. I know once someone starts throwing insults during a political discussion, they’ve lost the argument and I can move on.

What turns my stomach though is when a family member or friend does this. It’s disheartening to say the least, when a person you like and respect and who you assume feels the same in return, attributes to you the lowliest of character traits because of your political philosophy. And this flows in both directions you know; Left to right, Right to Left.

It’s not done so overtly as the coward gleefully spewing vile while hiding behind an anonymous screen name. It comes in our daily conversations with people we know in the form of believing that this person who you say is your friend is coming from a place of bad faith.

Instead of acknowledging that we both want essentially the same good things for society but just have different ideas on how to get there, motives become morally suspect and productive conversation becomes impossible.

Here’s how it works.

What the Right Says and What the Left Hears

 Are you against raising taxes on the wealthy because you feel it’s counterintuitive and will end up hurting those it is supposed to help? That means you’re selfish and only want what’s yours at the expense of the less fortunate.

Concerned that our bloated and unaccountable welfare programs rob people of their dignity and keep them trapped in a vicious cycle of dependency? Oh you heartless jerk, you want to see poor people dying in the streets.

Think there is too much uncertainty on whether man is having an effect on climate change to justify sweeping wide CO2 reducing reforms that will enormously impact jobs and income levels, especially at the lower end? You’re a “denier” being spoon-fed lies by the Koch brothers

What the Left Says and What the Right Hears

 Passionate about raising taxes on the rich because you feel they have not paid their fair share and poor people will benefit from more revenue? Stop spouting Marxist nonsense and get a clue about economics.

Think our welfare programs should be expanded upon because they do more good than harm and exemplify the country’s compassion for the poor? You’re an ignorant pawn of the far Left who wants a society dependent on government and who manipulates people in to voting for things that harm them by luring them with “free” benefits.

Think man is having a serious impact on the planet’s climate and that taking steps to reduce CO2 now will prevent future catastrophe? You’re a Socialist who wants nothing less than the destruction of American capitalism itself.

Demonization of Ideas

 I could go on but you get the idea I’m sure. The first sentence on each issue offers valid starting points on where to begin a discussion and, gasp, possibly learn something new. Unfortunately, many of us instantly jump straight to the second one, which is loaded with character judgement and has 0 to do with the issue at hand. It’s called the demonization of ideas you disagree with and is killing rational debate in this country.

We all make false assumptions about people; that’s human nature and unlikely to change. Can we at least stop questioning the humanity of those we disagree with though? Can we try to remember that every nasty political meme we post denigrating a politician or political party is also painting all your friends/family members who happen to vote for that person or party with the same wide brush?

Whether you believe we are made in God’s image or we evolved from a pool of goo, we all share the common trait of being human. Wonderfully flawed human beings at that but still worthy of courtesy and respect.


This entry was posted in Personal growth, Political, Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to About That Eye Plank…

  1. What happens when one set of brain washings confronts another?

    Brainwashed people go berserk when whatever got brainwashed into them gets questioned.

    Fortunately, the solution is for people to learn “the laws of nature and nature’s God.”*

    There is a science to politics and economics that was developed over millennia in the West.

    There is a reason for the wise recommendation to avoid whenever possible, discussions on religion and politics.

    Just call such discussions, battles of the brain washings.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Tricia says:

      Ha! What a disfigured mess indeed when brain washings collide. That’s a funny phrase you have there but the issues that lie beneath are very serious. I agree the solution is to know AND understand natural law but I do think we need more conversations on controversial topics in this country not less. Unfortunately we seem to have lost the ability to even do that in a civil manner. Not everyone of course, but it sure seems that way at times.


      • Understanding how things work is a matter of education, not natural ability.

        I got educated in the public school system beginning over half a century ago and I ended up having to go out on my own in order to get a proper education.

        The People are being educated in state schools that train us to accept tyranny, not build and maintain a society of justice and freedom.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Amen, Tricia, well said.

    The other day someone quipped that he finally understood why God sent a flood, because after reading some comments on the internet, he himself was thinking, “kill them all with fire!” It make me chuckle. We people just aren’t so pretty sometimes.

    I try to remember that what we are really fighting over is how best to love people. That sure can be hard to see in the midst of so much hyperbole, but it’s there.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Tricia says:

      Ha, I like that joke! So true what you say about learning how to best love people. It’s so easy to skip over the uniqueness of each person and their need to be heard in the midst of striving to be “right.” I know I have issues with this too which is one of the reasons why I wrote about it. Keeping a good sense of humor sure helps!


    • Citizen Tom says:

      I try to remember that what we are really fighting over is how best to love people. That sure can be hard to see in the midst of so much hyperbole, but it’s there.

      I think you are right up to a point. We run into problems when we think we know what is best for other people and try to run their lives for them.

      Since it sprang off something you wrote, I suspect you vaguely remember this one => https://citizentom.com/2016/01/23/when-love-becomes-an-excuse-for-tyranny/

      The funny thing about the Southern slave masters is that many cared about their slaves, but they still manage to contrive excuses to keep them in chains.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Dennis says:

    Does it not appear that a persons true nature and beliefs are manifested when discussing religion and politics?
    Perhaps those persons we hold in high regard have fooled us in what they really believe. What a let down! All my hero’s are bums!
    If you can’t argue the facts then tear down your opponent! Works every time.
    Good salespeople NEVER discuss religion or politics with a prospect or a customer. Maybe we should practice this with everyone.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tricia says:

      Oh no, all your heroes are not bums Dennis! 😉 Well I tend to to think yes and n on whether a person’s true nature shines through when discussing controversial subjects. I think some are so caught up in needing to be right or in not letting anything disrupt the narrative that’s now a part of their identity, that’s it’s almost impossible for them not to get nasty.

      Again I am not talking about a family member hurling insults over the dinner table, but that ingrained feeling in the back of the mind that automatically assumes the other person is coming from a place of bad faith. Some really are no doubt, but I think most are not.

      I don’t agree we need less discussion on touchy subjects, I think that makes things worse.


  4. ColorStorm says:

    You are a disgrace to your gender? Ha, tkx for the heads up T. lol

    Years ago my mother always distanced herself from family political discussions. While the proverbial heads were exploding, she was cool as a carrot. It wasn’t that she didn’t have opinions, but I think she knew something about the fleeting of time, and the ease in which families could become fractured over such things.

    I’m not smart that way. 😉 But your greater point is how there is value in things in which we disagree. If we could only learn to not be disagreeable when carrying our points.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tricia says:

      Yup ColorStorm, seems I am letting down people everywhere this election season, left , right, male female, I kinda like it! 😉

      Your mom sounds like a very wise person as mom’s usually are. I’m not smart that way either. I do feel though that remaining quiet is not an option any more, as one set of values is being dramatically forced upon the entire country under the guise that those who don’t like much what is going on are dumb, racist/homophobic hicks.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. One of our biggest ongoing problems is the fact we ascribe “right” or “wrong” titles to political issues. We are not intelligent enough to open our eyes and our minds to different realities. For example, if I told you Mr. Smith killed a man, would you say he deserved jail time or capital punishment. Based on the limited information I provided, many people would get into heated discussions adamantly voicing their opinions defending either jail time or capital murder. What do you think these angry opinionated people would say if I added the fact that Mr. Smith killed a man inside his house ATTEMPTING TO MURDER HIS WIFE?

    We don’t take the time to listen and decipher all the information. We have determined we have the right and skill to judge people, actions and policies. Those viewing the world from a different perspective are often shown disdain and contempt. Until we begin to VALUE HUMANS and recognize that compromise in thought and actions is essential to reach common ground to help EVERYONE move forward in a productive manner, we shall continue to “shout” with indignant righteousness to deaf ears causing greater divisiveness and increasing hostilities.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Tricia says:

      You said the magic words there Jonathan about valuing humans. It’s so very true and something I think that gets lost among all the noise of trying to prove points. Thanks for your thoughtful comment as always.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. In my first sentence, it should have read “political AND SOCIAL issues.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Well articulated. Politics is a hot wire, and yes, unfortunately one that sears relationships. I don’t know why Christians don’t get that one can be morally and ethically conservative while being more liberal in politics.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tricia says:

      I know it is so unfortunate that relationships get sacrificed on the holy plank of politics. Kinda dumb too eh?
      True too what you say, to an extant as I do know a fair amount of Liberal Christians too. I think the problem lies more in assuming what lays in the heart of why people believe what they do. We think we know but in most cases don’t.


  8. Jack says:

    Your post is valuable , thanks for the info http://myhealthandwellness.pen.io


Respectful comments always welcome.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s