Apr. 1st, 2010

prickvixen: (Default)
So I was looking at this gallery on Flickr made up of photos of misspelled Teabagger protest signs. I like a good spelling error as much as the next grammar Nazi, but I found myself disturbed by what I felt was the persistent closed-mindedness of the commenters.

These people aren't out there for their own amusement... they are desperate, worried people. A lot of them are unemployed. This isn't a game to them... they've been told by political action groups, by leaders in their community, that their already tenuous way of life is threatened, that what little they have is going to be taken away, and they don't know what else to do but to protest. When we on the left protest, we regard it as an admirable thing, the very essence of democracy; but when the right protests, we consider it contemptible and laughable.

If they seem poorly served by their education, it's not an indictment of them, it's of the educational system we all know is in such poor shape. And there are plenty of reasons people don't finish school; frequently people drop out because their family needs them to work, because they need the money. I have to wonder how many of the commenters are acquainted with such a situation.

I mean, fine, perhaps some of them are bigoted, many of them are ignorant or deluded, but you have to respect the fact that they are justifiably worried about their future, and that they are working within the democratic system in order to be heard. They have concerns, and these really ought to be addressed, even if the way they voice them is a little funky.

Look, the Republicans don't envision turning the extreme right into a force of storm troopers-- if these people get too out of hand, the Republicans will be happy to call the dogs on them, because ultimately they want what any politician wants, a kind of stable tension between opposing forces which maintains the status quo. But the fringe right (like the fringe left) has utility as a way of putting people in conflict with each other, and preventing them from coming to some sort of mutual agreement and understanding...

Having said that, there are many people who would pull a Dennis Miller at this point and switch sides, because many people just have to believe in something and have to pick a side; but I'm better than that! I will continue to sneer at everybody equally. :)

[note- this is not an April 1st joke]

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