Activism, whether it’s political, social or in support of reform of anything else, is the start of a conflict. In a relationship, does a confrontational attitude calm the situation or increase the tension? Being right or wrong rarely matters when emotions are involved.
In the United States, social reform and civil rights have been a major part of the political dynamic between the republican and democratic parties for the past hundred years, and have become increasingly controversial over the past few decades. Now, with our current commander in chief spouting increasingly ridiculous statements in regard to race and culture, we should be able to laugh and let it go. However, the mentality in our nation seems to have degraded to the belief that fighting back or raising the energy in conflict is beneficial. It isn’t. We all know the quote, “Be the change you wish to see.” Many people live by this mentality and either protest passively or live in a way that shows others how to behave. They lead by example, which is the best possible course of action. Even “passive protest” is aggressive by comparison. It raises a scenario where one party is either pointing a finger or accusing another of behavior that is labeled incorrect. And when another person who holds the opposing ideology dear is confronted with this, they tend to react. Sometimes in hostility. Passive aggressive is still aggressive.
The major problem in the United States is not that we don’t know how to handle problems. It is that we continuously pile the new on top of the old, grouped together as civil rights, before we’ve ever reached an agreement or peaceful conclusion to the previous issues. Race, culture, sexual orientation, lifestyle, gender identity… Race sits at the foundation of the cluster of social issues, and we never allow the concrete to set.
Every year, new issues arise, and for the highly conservative, these new issues seem nothing more than personality flaws. I understand that people on the liberal side just want to live lives without feeling judged. Well… People judge each other. And when being weird (queer) hits the conservative mind as odd, they react out of discomfort. We’ve literally called ourselves weird and expected everyone else to ignore that we’re weird, while at the same time highlighting that weirdness in a public way. Then, when that conservative mind becomes frustrated its falls back to the initial problem. “Everyone different from me is crazy!” No, they aren’t, but I get why you’d feel that way. An interesting connection is the bilingual thinker. I’ve seen fights between lovers that speak different native languages, and when the tension hits the highest level, neither side can understand the other language (at least not nearly as well), even though both consider themselves bilingual. They stop seeing anything from the other point of view, and understanding is lost.
When it all starts to crash, and both sides continuously raise the conflict, both sides lose. And even before that, it isn’t great. With liberals finding new ways to talk about the different types of weirdos in the world with different labels, “gay, lesbian, trans, bi, queer”, they (we) promote segregation rather than togetherness. “How do you identify?” I don’t know. I fall in love with people sometimes. “Guys, girls, what?” Usually girls… “So, what? Are you bi?” I’m alive.
Now, in 2020, we see a system of government that was built by and for the people in order to protect individuality and freedom. It is being torn asunder by the extreme opposition of the two sides. This is NOT what the country was founded for. The extreme opposition requires that candidates for the presidency take sides, creating characters that would otherwise have normally functioning psyches. I doubt Trump feels much like himself right now. He’s not in his right mind. Biden isn’t either, as much as we’d like to think he is. He’s at the mercy of his followers, and at the mercy of the system that was meant to promote the balance of duality, not the separation of duality.
If the system continues to push forward in the way that it is, my best advice for the country would be that presidential candidates must be both democratic and republican in order to avoid cataclysmic swings from right to left or left to right, as we’re seeing now. The election year is going to continue to be fascinating and dangerous, especially with the existence of a pandemic (and economic black hole to follow) that knows no race, culture, gender, or sexual orientation. In any case, if you ask COVID how it identifies, I’d guess pansexual.