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A Liberal Doesn’t Quite Get It
Ben Domenech shared an interesting column in yesterday’s Transom from a liberal who had a paradigm-challenging encounter with a redneck who fixed her car as she returned home from the Women’s March in Washington. It proves to be an experience that prevents her from going back to business as usual (apparently she hosts a podcast?) because she realizes that she has become a person she doesn’t want to be:
As I drove home, I felt the full extent to which Trump has actually diminished my own desire to be kind. He is keeping me so outraged that I hold ill will toward others on a daily basis. Trump is not just ruining our nation, he is ruining me. By the end of the drive, I felt heartbroken.
But this year, I realize, I retreated from my porch. Trump’s cruelty and mendacity demand outrage and the most vigorous resistance a nation can muster. Yet the experience with the man at the side of the road felt humbling. It reminded me that we are all just people trying to get home safe. It felt like a sign, that maybe if we treat one another with the kindness and gratitude that is so absent from our president and his policies, putting our most loving selves forward, this moment can transform into something more bearable? I want to come away from the march with that simple lesson, but it begs this question: How do we hold onto the fire fueling our resistance to the cruelty Trump unleashes, but also embrace the world with love? I wish I knew.
Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you a liberal in the grips of delusion. As I read the article I was expecting an introspective denouement to this interesting encounter. I thought it was going to be a reckoning with herself in which she resolves to change and see the humanity in the people who don’t share her political views.
Nope. She blames Trump!
He’s the one that is making her outraged, angry, and unkind. Not her. Him!
It’s going to be a long eight years.Published in General, Politics
I think a lot of people of this sort actually *enjoy* participating in collective fury. Call it a Ragegasm.
Our own Andrew Klavan has an insightful formulation that describes this phenomenon well: “Anger is the Devil’s cocaine.”
This young lady is not alone. Since Trump’s election, I watched many otherwise sensible people turn into anger addicts right in front of my eyes.
Great line. Though anger is sometimes useful, indeed necessary, it can also be addictive.
Reminds me: I wrote about this subject here – Some thoughts on anger
Remember 1984‘s Two Minute Hate? That is what this is about.
To requote myself:
Man, the guy who said that is pretty brilliant.
The anger is understandable. Even she recognizes it. But what’s interesting is who she blames: Trump, rather than herself. It doesn’t seem to occur to her that the source of the problem is within.
Awww. She was so close. Her epiphany was right there!!! And she whiffed.
I can’t blame her too much, really. In the nineties I was frequently outraged by the Clintons and it would be easy to blame them for the ire. Actually, when I had to teach elementary school kids, I had to defuse arguments. When they’d argue that the other person acted in one way, I tried to encourage them that they couldn’t affect what someone else did; they could only affect what they themselves did. Okay, elementary kids, hard lesson at that age. Later I learned to apply that to myself.
Much as the Obama years were outrageous, applying that principle has kept me much happier overall. Apparently it’s a hard one to learn.
It’s a very hard one to learn. I’ve had trouble with it myself…
But a funny 8 years.
Liberal Discovers Conservatives to be Human Beings; Blames Trump!
More like “Liberal Surprised that Conservatives Occasionally Resemble Human Beings; Blames Trump (because #resist)”
I’m sure a quick trip to the reeducation camp will cure her of this illusion.
Back when Bush was still President, one woman I knew would continually rant about HOW STUPID he was. When I pointed out his actual education versus her not-finished undergrad college work, she nearly lost the rest of her mind.
She KNEW just how amazingly, awfully, incredibly dumb this Harvard and Yale graduate was. And she was smarter than he was because her little record store was doing fine (never mind his MBA and his multiple successful business ventures, any one of which was a couple of orders of magnitude bigger than anything she ever managed).
Now, we have a whole generation of people who are dead certain that the current President – a billionaire and successful TV personality/producer – is much, much dumber than anyone, even though he managed to beat their favorite candidate by spending a third as much money, while the press and most of Washington were trying to tip the scales.
What’s worse is Trump was the guy they desperately wanted to get the nomination. They were salivating at that prospect. Election night was, not surprisingly, a whiplash moment that caused some long-term damage.
They say stuff like this a lot. Is this Scott Adams’ reality filter thing? Because otherwise, what are they talking about?
For the past 15 months we have been treated to many demonstrations that bigotry, hate, cruelty, and other negative features that are attributed to Trump and to anyone who doesn’t denounce Trump in the most vigorous terms is actually no more than projections of the bigotry, hate, cruelty, etc. of the people who are speaking.
In this case it does take a particularly clueless person to claim to be for love while insisting that everything must be about hate.
Yes, the hatred has addled her mind. But I wonder if it isn’t also a kind of confusion; a weird cognitive dissonance from the intense hate and the lack of an object. There’s Trump, right there, so hateable. But he hasn’t actually done anything. They keep talking about him like he’s Voldemort, all these heinous crimes he’s committed. But they never name any of them – what, specifically, are they talking about?
It’s all smarmy generalization, assuming that the listener knows what they mean, agrees. All insane histrionics – he’s the worst, the most awful, the most hateful, the racist, misogynist, gay-hating nazi-loving, blah, bla-blah, bla-blah.
Trump has had several wives – so have I. He has a bunch of kids, most of them seem really well-adjusted. So do I. He’s made some regrettable comments, some jokes that have gone wrong. Me too. (And every one of you, and every one of them.)
I watch the various Womens’ Marches, and I hear a lot of keening, cater-walling, pain and anguish. I am naturally concerned, because I am basically a kind person (like every one of you, and in most ordinary circumstances, every one of them). I reach out for an explanation, so I can understand, can help. But there is no explanation. Only that generalized, non-specific, primal hatred.
Everything they seem to be accusing him of Bill Clinton did overtly, multiple times, while he was President (and who knows how many times right there in the Oval Office). And he laughed about it. And they called us squares for raising an eyebrow.
But Trump hasn’t done it. Certainly not right now while President, and 70+ years old.
So there’s something strange at work here.
Some liberals should be required to watch Tucker and Dale versus Evil every morning.
Hard for me, too. During the Clinton years I forced myself to acknowledge the policies I agreed with. I felt less angry as a result. During Obama years, I did the same. Striving for intellectual honesty and recognizing the good in those I disagree with is good citizenshipand being a good Christian (I teach at a religious school). I try to teach this to my students. I also warn them not to trust people who use anger to pursuade them. I teach 1984 in 2 months; good times.
What gets me, and this applies to both Trump and Bush, are the ones who go back and forth between saying he’s the dumbest person ever to win election and that he’s a chessmaster in firm control of a vast right-wing conspiracy to install a plutocratic dictatorship. The same people seem to go back and forth between both extremes without a hint of irony.
An epiph whiff is the saddest whiff.
I had the same reaction reading that piece.
People like her are why I chose my online name more than 15 years ago.
I think they truly believe they’re living a hero’s life, simply by disliking someone they don’t even know. How did we come to this, where an entire group of people feels that they’re “making a difference” just by feeling the right way?
One of my personal pet peeves (and my wife and kids will attest to this) is “March for” This and “Walk for” That. As far as I can tell, all these actually accomplish is to snarl traffic (often on Sunday mornings, when I’m trying to get my family to church), leave six tons of coffee and water cups along the route, give a bunch of police officers some overtime, and make the participants feel good about themselves… and they’ve got the t-shirt to prove it!!
One of these “events” blocks my neighborhood every May, so I can’t even leave my house without an ordeal. I looked up how much money it had raised for the zoo during its 20 year history. $400,000. Total. Over 20 years. But, man, do people feel good about themselves.
This female sure gives President Trump a large quantity of power over her. “He makes me”…etc., etc. I wonder if she is aware of this. Most probably, the president has not had one bit of real effect on her life whatsoever, and if she has a job he has probably improved her life.
Same here. For me the offending phrase is, “Raising awareness.”
If anything I would hope femininism would accomplish- it would be eliminating this fundamental irony so many women have and don’t even know it.
What animates these women STILL centers around men: Men are the only actors in the world and it’s women’s task to influence them (men) any way they can ( withholding sex being their most effective weapon both individually and collectively) , as the only way to effect change in the world. They just might be right in that, but they can’t have BOTH! I’m an independent woman and it’s YOUR fault I’m not!
The man-hatred is usually evidence of them admitting they lack power and they will never access their own power by summoning men to save them. Men who help them in this way emasculate themselves rendering their “help” empty and meaningless. Another truth, these women need a good …..
Watching that pussyhat demonstration was eye-opening. I think that was feminism’s nadir. We hit peak collective PMS…
Right. That being, someone else who isn’t otherwise aware needs to be told by them and wake up and DO something in the world to make change. Or the silly idea that once their issue is on everyone’s tongue-tip the political will would be activated. This assumes all other issues are resolved and no more will come along to preempt the previous issues. How are the whales doing, by the way?
She probably isn’t aware, like Venus Williams, who said that women’s tennis is fundamentally different from men’s tennis. This girl is still working on freeing herself from the thought patterns imposed on her by an oppressive patriarchal construct. Perhaps someone can explain it to her someday, preferably a man.