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Thursday, November 10, 2016

Two Things I am Not Trying to Understand

These two things I am not trying to understand.
  1. Supportive, positive, intentional association with the views and practices of a man who promotes a false flag discussion of Sandy Hook.
  2. Intentional use, repetition, and promotion of rhetoric supportive of institutional and personal abuse of women, African Americans, Latinx individuals, Muslims, and refugees.

Since the United States voted this week to elect the man who will be our new president in two months, we have heard and read many sentiments and statements. We've heard much about needing and wanting to understand each other, to learn why people we know and disagree with voted for someone whose actions and words we characterize as abominable, dangerous, or unfathomable.

I have said that now is not the time to invest further in understanding why the unfathomable was done.

I believe and strongly, painfully feel this because there are two things that I know go beyond a lack of understanding on my part. I don't want or need to understand why someone that I know - as a human and often as a friend - supported the national, world, and cultural leadership of our president elect.

May I be clear: 

I do not say this is "not my" president elect. That is, he is my president elect.

I do not say that I cannot respect, empathize with, care about, or learn from my friends whose vote supported our president elect.

I do not say that a friend who practiced her or his civil right in support of the president elect believes that no children died at Sandy Hook, no teachers died, no parents grieve, no grandparents mourned, no siblings... Nor do I say that such a friend believes abuse is good or that hateful rhetoric is a positive trait in a leader.

I do not say that a citizen must or does agree with everything a candidate says, does, or promotes.

I do not say that a candidate for U.S. president must or does agree with every person or group who campaigns for him.

I am saying that there are things about which I will not compromise because these things are so wrong and simultaneously so integral to the character - at least as it is portrayed - of a leader.

I am saying that, given the length and mass-social mediation of the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, I do not believe or have hope that I will hear something new addressing a good, worthy reason to act in favor of a leader who practiced the two things listed above. I don't feel a sense of responsibility or desire to listen to explanations that don't acknowledge the evil in those two practices.

I am not linking to online sources which have received mass, repeated, and diverse attention during the many months before this week. They not only are there, they have been there; now is not the time for us to re-state and re-link to examples as if fresh data or a fresh debate is that one thing we need. (If you are genuinely unsure what the number one point I list above is, and you want to expose yourself to that information, you can do a google or human-conversation-search for Al*x J*nes. [Fill in the vowels.])

Good will not come from our discussing the relative significance of the two practices listed above. Perhaps right now we might not need to know for whom our friends voted (or why). We do need to know how each other hurts and what each other celebrates. This is one of our high callings.

Let's try to understand the economic and other social struggles and pain the federal government may be able to lessen, and how we can participate in that work of justice and relief. Let's acknowledge, even if not in fraught conversation between you and me, that there is nothing good to say in excuse for two unfathomable practices of our president elect.

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