Having given speeches throughout Europe and North America, I was always amazed that the most insane and crude comments came right here at my first blog. I asked people to act more civilized in their comments about the blog, but far more important, that they treat other people who commented with respect and civility. Apparently that was impossible for some. The ignorant, judgmental, bigoted, sexist, and religious hatred continued. I asked several times that those writing that way feel free to be critical of me, but to restrain themselves and act civilized when commenting about others who shared ideas and thoughts here. So, reluctantly, I stopped allowing all the crude comments to be made, and it meant ending comments altogether. I am constantly amazed that in the 21st century there are still Neanderthals who must act out with bigotry, sexism, religious hatred, unfounded exaggerations, narrow-mindedness, and ignorance. All-the-while they are totally unaware of how they have been manipulated.
Political opinions are one thing, but all that hatred has no place in print anywhere. I never expected all people commenting to have a Ph.D., or an M.A., or even have an I.Q. above ten. We have lost our way as a nation and as a culture. Today's right-wingers and left-wingers are an embarrassment to our society, our nation, our people. Hatred prevails. Bigotry holds forth. Sexism lives. Ignorance trumps intellect and insight. We have no idea anymore what civilized discourse means. Right or left, we cannot express our opinions without spewing hatred, distortion, lies, and personal attacks. Read the newspapers and magazines. Listen to American radio. America has taken giant strides backwards.
A candidate running for President of the United States [John Edwards or Newt Gingrich] is so insensitive to another human being, let alone his wife, that he cheats on her in an adulterous affair while she is suffering from cancer. How low can you go?
The upcoming presidential election cycle, already begun, will have little to do with helping America, suggesting positive solutions to ongoing problems, or find any intelligent programs. It will be a race to the bottom, financed by big money in both political parties. The American people will have little voice. And the decisions about who to vote for will have little basis in reality or insight. The people will be manipulated, lied to, and find nothing but distortions about self-serving and selfish programs that will be promotted. And in the process, the average Americans will think they have formed an opinion based on fact and insight. You aill be a pawn, a rube, a puppet...bought and sold. What's really frightening is that all this ignorance and voting will be for leadership in the most powerful and nuclear-armed nation in the world.
"We are healthy only to the extent that our ideas are humane." -Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.