Why America is not great and our group-think bubbles…..


I thought more about this cartoon. And I posted this on Facebook:

But WHY is America not great?

If you think that America has become a country where we enable the irresponsible poor and coddle criminals and where we accept (encourage) rude behavior. If you think that we don’t worship your deity enough and we don’t inspire enough “respect” from other countries around the world, and if we’ve watered down “our culture” too much (dammit, I don’t want to have to “press 1 for English”), ..that is one thing.

If you think that certain groups are still treated unfairly (given worse treatment by law enforcement based on skin color), if the government works to make the extremely wealthy even wealthier and is indifferent to the less fortunate (e. g. those born into poverty or those with chronic medical problems)…and is deficient in public investment (e. g. edcuation), that is another thing.

And so it goes. What doesn’t help matters is that many of us live in bubbles; I am as guilty of this as anyone else. Almost all of my “do stuff with” friends have advanced degrees or extra professional credentials. That is just how it works out.

Why this matters: I believe that we are most concerned with what affects our day to day existence. If gas prices are high: doesn’t really affect me directly. I walk to work, drive a Prius (when I do drive) and 30-40 dollars for a fill up is no big deal for someone of my income level. BUT that is a big deal for others who drive more and who are struggling financially.

It is a bit like running; if you are feeling strong, going 2-3 miles is no biggie. But toward the end of an ultra or even a marathon….that is a looooooong way. And trying 3 miles the day after, say, a double red cell blood donation…loooooong way.

Upshot: our immediate reactions to social conditions are different.

And because we get tribal….well, I know that I sometimes am reluctant to admit it when the “other side” might have a point.

Take immigration: yes, I am a “play by the rules” sort of guy, and no, I don’t think that someone else from another country has “a right” to be here. I am for legal immigration, but I am a pragmatist. And yes, I gave props to President Bush for at least attempting action on this issue.

But many of the vocal opponents to illegal immigration ARE right wing, xenophobic, racist assholes. I want nothing to do with them. So, during debates, I find myself biting my tongue.
Yes, I have conservative friends that I care a great deal for, and I can be honest, with THEM. But those discussions tend to be private.

Election Boring. Hillary has a healthy lead and that is unlikely to change. I’m sure that the media will try to stir things up…say “Hillary’s lead shrinks among the blind left handed dentists demographic”…but in fact the race has been reasonably stable for a while.


September 1, 2016 - Posted by | political/social, social/political |

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