Saturday, July 11, 2015
If I went to a doctor, and that doctor's negligence caused me unnecessary pain and injury, I would be justified in taking that doctor to task because that doctor failed to uphold the standards of a doctor. No sane person would scream "How dare you! Doctors do a hard job! You wouldn't want to do that job! You don't know how to perform surgery! You live your life under the blanket of health that doctors provide! Shut up, you pathetic liberal!"
If I took my car to a mechanic for repairs, and that mechanic left the oil cap off, and my engine block cracked, I would be justified in taking that mechanic to task because that mechanic failed to uphold the standards of a mechanic. No sane person would scream "How dare you! Mechanics do a hard job! You wouldn't want to do that job! You don't know how to fix engines! You live your life under the blanket of transportation that mechanics provide! Shut up, you pathetic liberal!"
I work as a computer programmer in a hospital system. If I were negligent in processing patient records, and those patients suffered because of that negligence, the patients and my employer would be justified in taking me to task for my failure to uphold the standards of a computer programmer. No sane person would scream "How dare you! Computer programmers do a hard job! You wouldn't want to do that job! You don't know how to write code and process database records! You live your life under the blanket of efficiency that computer programmers provide! Shut up, you pathetic liberal!"
Yet whenever someone points out that a cop, or a group of cops, or a percentage of cops, are behaving in ways that reflect poorly on cops in general, some people scream "How dare you! Cops do a hard job! You wouldn't want to do that job! You don't know how to deal with criminals! You live your life under the blanket of safety that cops provide! Shut up, you pathetic liberal!"
I've long found this mystifying. To me, pointing out the bad apples in the barrel is the most sensible thing in the world, because I would hate to see that whole barrel go bad. Yet when some folks look at me doing so, all they see is someone who hates apples. And the weirdest thing is they don't do this for everyone. To them, the argument that "It's a hard job that you couldn't do" is only applicable to those professions. To them, soldiers, cops and firefighters are exempt from being held accountable to the very standards that make us idolize them in the first place! I just don't understand it.
But I do understand this: it's the same thing some people do with artists. To those people, artists exist on a pedestal that renders them unassailable to the quantifiable standards we apply to other professions. To those people, the mere act of looking at artists the same way we look at everyone else is an insult. Artists are heroes. Artists are above us.
It's hero worship. Or if it ain't, I don't know what the hell it is.
The longer I live, the more I think everybody's afraid. The way we respond to that fear defines us and separates us. But if you peel back those distinctions... it looks like none of us can stand the thought of a world where we're all accountable. It looks like we all need heroes to worship.
Sunday, July 5, 2015
As I was preparing breakfast this morning, suddenly, out of the blue, it hit me. You pro-Confederate flag people? You're not being honest.
I should've seen this weeks ago. I've wasted my time responding to you because you and I weren't pursuing remotely the same goals.
I grew up in the northeast, and I was as politically ignorant as it is possible for a kid to be. And even I knew there was something up with that flag. If I knew, then... you knew. You knew.
And now you're trying to deny what you knew. It's clear you never read the facts about the origin of the flag, or its resurgence as a segregationist symbol in the fifties and sixties, and you never will. You don't acknowledge that the white terrorist who murdered nine people in a black church in South Carolina was inspired by that flag. You don't talk about the black churches that have burned since then. And you sure don't talk about the fact that organizations have been trying to get that flag removed from the South Carolina Capitol for decades.
No, all you do is smirk, and spout some self-satisfied drivel. You obfuscate. You pretend that this is just a gout of liberal guilt that came out of nowhere. You blame Obama. You talk about the Dukes of Hazzard and throw around the word "censorship", disregarding the fact that no one is censoring you. You grab whatever nonsense is at hand and throw it back in the faces of anyone foolish enough to attempt dialogue with you.
Well I'm done. I'm not going to bother engaging with you any more, because I understand now that you haven't been giving me the same assumption of clean intent I've given you. Have your fun with your filthy rag. I'm going to see how I can help get it taken down from the South Carolina Capitol.