Friday, November 11, 2016

"Voting for a Bigot is Complicit with Bigotry"

It wasn't skinheads and KKK members who voted Trump into office. Not folks who fell for the con and eagerly bought the bombast. Not belligerants in gimme caps raving about immigrants and demanding their country back. It was moderate conservatives, who believed they were averting disaster by voting against Hillary. They deeply dislike Trump, and never drank his lemonade. Many of them further believed that the status quo could use a shake-up, even by someone damaged.

A number of my friends held this position, and they're lovely people, so I'm taking some of the current invective against them a bit personally. Very few liberals pronouncing on these people actually know any Trump voters. They just see the extremists on TV, and extrapolate. They are engaging in the same faulty reasoning as those who see jihadi lunatics on TV and conclude Moslems are all trying to kill us.

The line I hear again and again is that "voting for a bigot is complicit with bigotry, regardless of other factors".

I staunchly reject that. Bigotry has always been a flaw, but only recently deemed an unpardonable sin, and only among certain idealogical tribes. Failure to deem it an unpardonable sin is neither tantamount to nor condoning of that flaw. It's rigid and unconciliatory to imagine it so. In fact, it is itself an example of bigotry.

Perhaps you share my view that the left is reacting deplorably (and counterproductively) with the flag burning and carrying on, when Trump hasn't actually done anything yet (and has even settled down into behaving like some semblance of a mensch for at least the time being). If so, bear in mind that when we find flaw with the actions of the left or the right; of men or women; or of either side of any other dichotomy, we are always finding flaw with greater humanity; incompletely registering a perfectly appropriate misanthropy. The stupid things groups do are the things humans do.

We were blessed with Obama for eight years, and that was way better than we deserved. This isn't us dropping into a pit. This is just the normalizing descent from that freakish peak. The world boasts 2.5 billion professed followers of Christ and millions of professed admirers of Gandhi and MLK. But - especially when the stakes rise a tad and we get our dander up - the message still hasn't sunk in.

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