Someone who rarely writes about politics writes about politics

[here are two things that have greatly helped me understand where we are as a country right now]

They’re both kind of off-the-radar, so wanted to share in the case it helps someone else.

[and here is a semi-long post about politics and society]

Clay Shirky’s observations are, I believe, in the end a good thing.

But to what the Reveal podcast uncovers — we have to be better at educating people before we cast them aside. Period. All people. All the time.

Donald Trump is evil. I believe that.

But I do not believe the people who are voting for him are. I fundamentally disagree with their arguments, but I believe that by failing to provide wave after wave of people with education and access to opportunities we’ve screwed ourselves repeatedly.

Usually, it’s a error of omission — we’ve lost the voices of Black people, Hispanic and Latino people, transgender people, women of all stripes, and more because of this failure. Look at the sea of Caucasian men running companies.

But in this instance it’s an error of commission. We’ve enabled people who identify as “true conservatives” to over index in our political process because we’ve failed to bring them along in embracing equality and inclusion and in understanding the benefits it confers to society. Yes, in part it’s their fault, but also it’s my fault and your fault — everyone’s fault who assumes that a difference, even a difference of opinion, means that someone should be written off.

I hear these people and think “Shhhhh, you had your turn” — but if you’ve never been taught the metaphorical concept of sharing and don’t understand why someone else should have a turn, I do, actually, see how it might feel like the rug has been pulled out from under you and the fabric of your world is falling apart.

No, I don’t think it would ever be possible to sway everyone that fits this mold, but I do think if we’d made it a priority decades ago to provide better education, opportunities, and outreach — to all the people all the time, it would help*. It is not the job of people whose voices have been squashed to enlighten people who’ve always been heard. But it is the job of our society to make real education a priority.

That won’t change by November, but if there’s one thing this election cycle is showing me it’s that inclusion, listening, and access to opportunity need to extend to every corner of society.

* I know a lot of Trump supporters have all the access and opportunity in the world. The most convincing theory I’ve read is that they’re programmed for fear and haven’t bothered to educate themselves out of it. Which is also pretty depressing.

[thank you. bye.]

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