There has been so much noise lately I’ve had no desire to add to it.
I like the political process. One of my friends posted she doesn’t like political discussions. They upset her and make her sad. It is not the discussions that are puke-ish. It is the non-discussion—the grenade throwing.
Social media has become a sewer of snarky, hateful and bad-mannered negativity. One of my favorite Christian writers has posted some nasty comments about all others who oppose her candidate. I’m not sure I will buy another of her books—her comments have damaged her worthiness to influence my thinking.
This morning I read a few pages from a Quaker book on silence. I then worked my way through several pages of Twitter. With some exceptions, the political comments were nothing but noise. NOISE! Not helpful, insightful or even good for my ears to hear—just noise.
I haven’t chosen who to vote for. The list is growing shorter. I won’t even listen to anyone who does not exhibit civility. Civility—does not use guttural language, treats others respectfully even when the opponent is talking craziness, chooses to debate not sling vitriol at opponents. I am waiting for a debater to say, “Alfred, help me understand what you mean and how it will work when you say….” If the idea is nonsensible—as some of them are—the opponent will grease his/her own slide into oblivion.
I thought Christie’s “…there it is…” to Rubio was clever, perfectly timed and for the moment the exactly right thing. In the long run it may have hurt the Governor.
Stephen Mansfield’s book is now available—“Ask it.” Mansfield says more than anything we need a statesman—a Churchillian type leader. Of the viable candidates, who would that be?
A rhetorical question which I think we know the answer: Has our culture and society become so base that to cut through the verbal clutter, a speaker has to use the f-word to get people’s attention? And no one calls him down! I remember when the words, “Not in the presence of women and children!” pulled speech back from the sludge. Dear God, the barbarians have entered the conversation. Maybe even paid big bucks to perform on half-time shows. (Incidentally, Beyonce did not arbitrarily decide to do all that stuff. Some higher-ups who can’t do choreography made that decision.)
One line from a reporter cleared the fog for me: “Is this a person who you want to be a role model for your children?” The next president must accomplish much with international terror, energy, education and 6 million other things. He or she must also find ways to do what John Wesley did: Repair the manners of the people.
Trying to avoid the noise and slop.
©2016 D. Dean Benton—writer & wonderer
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