Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Fear and Loathing

Scary monsters, super creeps
Keep me running, running scared

~~ David Bowie, “Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)”

You know what strikes me about talking to conservatives? How damn scared they are.

I know I’ve written a little bit about this before, but I still can’t wrap my brain around it. They’re afraid of everything. Cop killers. Gangs. Home invaders. Rapey immigrants. Terrorist attacks. ISIS. It doesn’t matter if they live in a rural area and never visit large cities. They seem certain that ISIS thugs are crawling towards their home, machetes clutched in their teeth, ready to break in and behead them.

I just don’t get that level of paranoia and fear. If I were afraid of every bad thing that can happen in the world, I’d turn into an agoraphobe and never leave the house. I may be somewhat of a hermit now, but it’s because I like my solitude, not because I’m afraid of the big scary world! I’m not afraid that if I go to a Notre Dame football game, a terrorist is going to bomb the stadium. I’m not afraid to go to the new James Bond movie (November 6th! Heads up!) in the theater because someone might go on a shooting spree. I’m not afraid to fly because someone might have a bomb in their underwear.

Of course, these things have all happened, and there is cause for concern. But instead of cowering like frightened sheep in our homes, how about we ditch the fear and get a little defiant? How about we start working to fix the problems instead of living in fear? Let’s continue to focus on the issues that gave rise to terrorist organizations—and let’s not ignore the fact that we’ve got plenty of homegrown terrorists right here in our country. Let’s stop allowing the NRA to hold a gun to our heads (metaphor intended) and stand up to them and demand common sense gun reforms AND demand that our legislators quit kissing the NRA’s lobbying asses. Let’s make sure that no-fly policies are kept up-to-date and enforced.

I don’t pretend to have all the answers. These are complex problems that require complex solutions. That’s what is so frustrating to me about the simple solutions offered by people like Trump. If you take any time at all to research the issue, you would understand that deporting 11 million people and building an impenetrable wall (and making Mexico pay for it!) are suggestions without merit and without a chance in hell of happening.

Maybe that’s the root of the problem. People want simple solutions for complex problems. Complex problems don’t lend themselves well to simple solutions, and it’s silly to think so. It’s a complicated world that has changed a lot and continues to change. That seems to be really hard for a lot of people to deal with.

Change can definitely be scary, but it’s also inevitable. I’m with REO Speedwagon on this one. Gotta roll with the changes.

Keep on rolling!


  1. ... but that is why Trump is leading the GOP polls... he gives simple answers to complex questions... I think that as we become a less literate and educated country, that it will be easier to frighten us into giving up rights and freedoms under the guise of safety...

  2. The lack of real information for the majority of the older conservatives that are still driving the vote is astounding.


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