Tuesday, October 26, 2010
America is a violent country, and it always has been since the days of Indian-killing and slavery. Don't believe the hype. In this disturbing clip, Republican supporters of tea party candidate Paul Rand stomp on the head of a woman from MoveOn.org. This shows you the kind of hate that is being stirred up across the land. There are historic parallels and I'm not being flip comparing these thugs to early Nazi supporters in the beerhall days of Hitler's rise to power. Bad economy, hatred, racism and fear blend together in one scary cocktail. Can you imagine if the boot was on the other foot, and several male Obama supporters beat the hell out of a lady tea party enthusiast clutching her bible? That clip would be a propaganda coup and would run non-stop on Fox News.
As violence goes, one could argue for self-defense but never bullying. Ganging up on someone, or picking on someone smaller and less able to fight back, is a sign of cowardice. Sadly, bullies seem to be in fashion these days--and it's not just the bullies themselves but the green light they get from their misguided parents and so-called leaders who fear and hate people who seem different. Does it make bullies feel tough, that they can gang up on someone? Does it make them feel macho? Do they have something to prove? Teen suicides are on the rise, many resulting from victims being tormented by these unenlightened jerks.
I came across this in an essay in the New Yorker.
"This month, we heard about Tyler Clementi, an eighteen-year-old Rutgers University freshman who threw himself off the George Washington Bridge after his roommate used a Webcam to broadcast, live online, Clementi making out with a male date. His suicide followed those of Billy Lucas, aged fifteen, of Greensburg, Indiana, and Seth Walsh, thirteen, of Tehachapi, California, both in September, and preceded by a day that of Asher Brown, thirteen, of Houston, Texas. All three boys had reportedly been victims of anti-gay bullying."
It's all connected. Hatred and fear of people with different beliefs, skin color, religion or sexual orientation resulting in violence. There have always been bullies, but now we have so-called responsible people, parents and political leaders, spouting intolerance and speaking in a coded language fanning hatred of foreigners and illegals, socialists and gays, outsiders and non-conformists. If Adolph Hitler rose from the dead he might think he won the war.
Fight the hate. Teach tolerance and justice. Start at home.