In Trump’s America, how do we return to valuing knowledge?: A rant.
I’m honestly asking this question because I’m afraid for the future of the US. In Donald Trump’s America, we’re surrounded by those who hold disdain for intelligent people. We’re surrounded by those who celebrate ignorance. We’re surrounded by those who denigrate the knowledgeable and ignore facts. How do we turn this around?
One simple view of a Trump rally or a scan of a pro-Trump Facebook group confirms the state of affairs we find ourselves facing. If they don’t like a news story, they call it fake, and it becomes so. If they don’t like the position of a political opponent, they give them a schoolyard nickname and dismiss them as unAmerican or treasonous. If they don’t like an investigation, they call it a witch hunt and it becomes irrelevant to them.
About one half of the voting populace in the US no longer values facts, but instead, has replaced the truth with headlines and memes that make them feel like they’re on the right side of issues, regardless of their accuracy. And those citizens celebrate each other and their leader with no regard for reality. They’ve created their own version. Willful ignorance has spawned their personal truths, and they are unwavering.
So how do we get back to a world where facts matter and education is valued? I honestly don’t know. It takes much less effort to share a meme or dishonest headline than to search for the truth. This behavior so closely mirrors that of the extremely religious, and in many cases, the folks involved are the same. Rather than search for the truth, they cling to easier things that make them feel good instead. Just like Christian texts have warned that those who offer alternate explanations for the universe are puppets of Satan, Trump has convinced his followers that anyone who disagrees with him is peddling fake news or is a traitor. And when the hell did presidents start having “followers” anyway? When did it become acceptable for presidents to hold rallies aside from a political campaign? Who does that? Narcissistic dictators do that. Not United States Presidents.
We live in serious times, but we don’t have a serious leader. And for some reason, our elected representatives don’t want to do anything about it because they might lose their jobs. But if your job is defending a narcissist pathological liar, then what’s so great about your job? I sure as hell wouldn’t want a job that would force me to take down every mirror in my house for fear I might get a glance of myself and feel ill.
End rant. Happy holidays. F#ck!!
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Originally published at https://www.patheos.com on December 23, 2019.