By GORDON GLANTZ
GORDONVILLE – Are we embroiled in a civil war? Not only is the answer to that question an affirmative, a full-throated “Hell, yeah,” but I have been on the front lines since the earliest days.
I’m talking about before we knew this war was even a war.
I’m talking about when Tea Party and militia memberships exploded before Barack Obama could even put two feet into the Oval Office.
Their thinly veiled battle cry: We want our country back.
Our response: What does that mean, exactly?
We knew darn well what it meant, but it was worth asking the rhetorical question to see them do to their little chicken dances around the topic — although I did get straight answers at enough backyard barbecues and backroom meetings that it was clear what it was all about.
Enough of us realized the power of the moment, not only when Obama was elected for his first term but reaffirmed a second.
Not bad when a third of the country thinks you are a Muslim born in Kenya.
And it was about race — about race when people on the other side of the fence talked about how their descendants would have been rolling over in their grades.
Hit fast-forward and they had their champ in a chump that calls himself the current president.
Too old and feeble to take it to the streets, I do what I do best and try to right wrongs by writing about it.
That’s in columns, songs, attempts at coherent give and take on social media and with blogs such as this.
The other day, I found myself sparring with followers of the so-called president, people who like to make their point by writing in ALL CAPS or ending a rambling (usually punctuated with hideous grammar) with an LOL or “ha ha.”
I have gone through stretches of just ignoring it, or laying low, like on my spy mission on a Facebook page that sent me an invite that I accept and now monitor for its hate speech.
Other times, though, it’s either enduring the pain of banging my head against the wall or engaging them.
So I engaged.
And I did so well that I decided to blogify it — i.e. turn it into a blog.
Here are some highlights, as I believe letting out my pent-up stress and frustration of a flooded basement and Sofia’s travel softball tryouts led to me landing some serious 1-2 combinations.
It all started with a post about how their president (not mine) could not and should be blamed for COVID-19.
To that I replied: “I know you people like to hang your hats on ‘he didn’t invent the virus,’ but that’s silly. And not the point. Leaders, good leaders, are proactive and not reactive. Politics should not enter into the equation when there is an existential threat to everyone.”
And he knew of the threat long before it affected those he was elected – with the help of Putin and the electoral college – to serve and protect.
I continued: “That’s why you have these people called scientists. The smartest person in the room is the one who is smart enough to realize they aren’t the smartest in the room on every topic. He is a barely functional idiot with esteem issues. He was warned of this virus way before it hit our shores, and no real measures were taken. He just thought he could take that thing that passes for a head and bury it in the sand.”
Why? To me, it is simple. Their president has a “brain” that is so wired toward the economy that he sees nothing else. He was too worried about the market, etc. What happens? By delaying a proactive response, and barely being reactive, the economy tanked even worse. The whole country should have shut down for two months in February, with everyone getting stimulus checks like they got anyway 6-8 weeks later anyway.
COVID-19 would have been contained, less people would have died and the economy would have had a foundation to be built upon. That’s what a real leader would have done. He didn’t ask for the disease, but we ask for leadership in response to it.
“We got a misleader full of shit,” I wrote. “Any questions? LOL?”
But then, right on cue, another mental midget from his parents’ basement chimed in, saying the odds of dying from COVID-19 are the same as getting killed while crossing the street.
Sounded good, and probably does on stools in bars where the Jack Daniels flows into shot glasses and Confederate flags adorn the walls alongside Elk heads.
The problem is there are these things called facts. There are around 6,000 pedestrian deaths per year in the US. There have been 159,000 — and counting — COVID-19 deaths.
I got the predictable concession than Obama is more articulate but was still “an asshole.” When I asked what gave him “asshole” status, the critics turned to crickets.
But even as we drifted away from the topic, I threw a grenade that landed right into that foxhole, going right after the “articulate but” argument.
Obama is articulate because he is well-educated, I explained. Their president (not mine) was born with a silver spoon up his orange ass and went to all the best boarding/military schools (and if his niece is to be believed, it was because his mother rejected him and/or he was as incurably incorrigible as he is now).
He then went to the Wharton School at Penn (allegedly, since no one saw him there). There is zero reason — with that background — to talk like a buffoon, other than that he is mentally deranged and it’s the best he can do.
I think he is mentally deranged, and it’s the best he can do.
If you voted, and still support that, what does it say about you?
I added: “It must be nice to either use a fake news narrative or say he was ‘just kidding’ all the time. The reality, whether ‘yews’ want to admit it or not, is that he was elected because of — not in spite of — the mainstream media giving him free advertising.”
There was one guy in the fray who seemed semi-literate and tolerable, if only because he didn’t go to low blows right away. He went on a long and winding spiel about the Black Lives Matter movement and how the environment now is one filled with reverse racism.
I didn’t want to make that descent into the rabbit hole with him that there really is no such thing as reverse racism, since a majority does not face prejudice in a systemic way, but I didn’t go there.
Instead, since he seemed to have an IQ at least in the average range – 90 to 110 – I decided to engage, knowing I was at least dealing with a Border Collie.
Here is what I said, verbatim: “I’m not going to say you don’t make some valid points, because you do — at least in the abstract. It’s a complete mess right now. How did we descend into this state of madness — a pandemic that should have been contained better with better planning and a civil war, sparked by class warfare, at the same time? Look to the White House. You elect someone unfit for the job, who thrives of division for his own ends, this is bound to happen. I dread to think what’s next if he gets another four years. We should have known better during his campaign, with the hate being spewed to get votes (and openly inviting foreign interference). But don’t forget, by definition, he was never a popular president. He didn’t win the popular vote.”
Still, they remain incredulous as to why we on the left – people of color, in particular – don’t see the light when their version of the light is nothing but darkness.
Think about it. These nitwits still have to understand that black people loved the Clintons. Their president (not mine) was so outright disrespectful to Hillary during the campaign, with the “lock her up” chants, that it was a turnoff right there.
How is someone vowing to undo everything Obama did, good or bad, going to ease racial discord? How is leading the birther movement going to just go away?
And urban communities are torn apart by gun violence, and no one really gives a shit. Leaders from those communities, more than any, have been crying out for gun control legislation for years.
The so-called president is absolutely opposed to even the smallest of gun control measures.
The backdrop was right for #blacklivesmatter. George Floyd was the straw that broke the camel’s back as much as the knee that broke his windpipe. When you think about Colin Kaepernick, he was taking a knee against police brutality years ago — way before the Floyd incident.
I added: “Look at how your president (not mine) spoke about that? If calling it reverse racism helps you sleep better at night, go for it. I just call it the chickens coming home to roost. He asked for it, he got it.”
The reality is that the so-called president’s moment to win over a lot of us — myself included — was early on, in the wake of Charlottesville, and he pussyfooted around it with the likes of hater Steve Bannon whispering in his ear. Then there was the clearly racist mishandling of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria. There was no walking it back from there.
And here we are.
Which is brings us back to the point of the pointless post, about us mean Snowflakes unfairly blaming COVID-19 on their hero. No, he didn’t create the disease, but he mishandled it when he had advance knowledge of it.
An analogy would be that it’s like a small town not taking cover when there is a tornado warning. The town officials didn’t create the tornado, but not bracing for it when it’s in the forecast makes the death and destruction worse.
If you are the mayor of the little town that thinks they can pray away a tornado, your ass should be grass.
Same rules apply with a pandemic.
I’d end this with a LOL, but it’s really not a laughing matter.
It never was, going way to back to when the seed to this civil war were planted, and never will be.