“Dave, what do you think about the Charlottesville riot?”
Look, what I think should be pretty obvious, and literally nothing that I have to say about it will change anybody’s mind about it. For the record, the person who sent me that message is a die hard liberal leftist who is more concerned that I have not “condemned” the Neo-Nazi movement in Virginia to his satisfaction, than about what I actually “think” about the incident.
That’s fine. My friends are an expansive group covering every line of the spectrum of political and religious thought and belief. From left to right, nothing I have ever said has ever changed any of their minds. Nothing that I could add to this story will either.
I could point out the obvious, which is that yes, I hate Nazis. Some things shouldn’t have to be said.
I could point out the obvious, which is that those who are most loudly demanding condemnation of the Nazi’s are the same folks who refuse to condemn violence and rhetoric from those who appear to have political concord with them.
I could point out the obvious which is that we (corporately as a society) have spent the last thirty years lionizing and honoring those who make their living stoking dissention and division, be it political or racial.
I could do that. But why bother? Nobody is gonna change their minds over this.
So the biggest story on the planet right now is Charlottesville. ISIL claimed responsibility for killing 15 people yesterday in Pakistan. In Kenya, 16 people have died in election related violence as one of the longtime most stable countries in Central Africa comes apart. I listened yesterday as a person explained to me that the reason they were scared to by a house was… North Korea. In Iraq, two American Soldiers died yesterday in combat.
In a war that we were told was “ended.”
I have lost track of the comments I’ve heard on the news and seen on social media that we “have never been more divided.”
That, my dear friends is really what this is all about. It’s a complete myth. It’s demonstrable nonsense. It’s not only untrue, it’s a falsehood that should be labeled as “fake news.”
But instead, people – friends – on both sides, keep repeating the line, we’ve never been more divided.
Putting aside the obvious, the American Civil War, the truth is that we have been “more divided” on so many occasions that it boggles the mind of the modern American raised on tales of the New Deal and World War II. It reminds me of one of my favorite jokes:
A new Marine reached Guadalcanal late in the battle, when the Japanese were just hanging on and being mopped up. The Marine was disappointed because he had not gotten to participate in the fight.
His Sergeant told him, “Go up on the hill over there and yell, ‘To Hell with Hirohito!’ When the Japanese Soldier stand up to reply, shoot him.”
So, the Marine walked off towards the hill. A long time passes and the Sergeant doesn’t hear anything. A bit later the Marine comes back into the camp.
“What happened?” asked the Sergeant.
“I yelled like you said, and then the Japanese soldier stood up and yelled back, ‘To hell with Roosevelt!’ And of course, I cannot shoot a fellow Republican…”
Even in the fire of World War II, we were divided. We were even more divided during World War I, with the US Government throwing people in jail for speaking out against the war. My own childhood was spent watching Vietnam protestors throw rocks and bottles at people who disagreed with them.
Never more divided.
The difference was how we dealt with that division. Sometimes we compromised. Sometimes we worked it out via legislation or even the occasional Constitutional Amendment.
I can point all of this out, and it won’t mean anything to people who have closed their minds to truth and to history. They have already decided that the only thing that can “heal” the “division” is to silence the others.
So… I leave you with this simple question: What scares you more:
(a) a neo-Nazi screaming “Blood and Soil!”
(b) a BLM screaming “Black Lives Matter!”
(c) a person who says that they support the Constitution, and now says that either side should be silenced?
I know what it is for me. And nothing that you say to me about it is going to change my mind…
Posted on August 13, 2017, in 1st Amendment, American, Civil War, Constitution, Freedom of speech, History, WWI, WWII and tagged Charlottesville, HIstory, Racism, World War 1, World War II. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.