re: “fake news” and “real Americans”
The REAL vs. the FAKE is the political conflict of today. It’s also decades in the making. Hence:
- chain restaurants advertise their AUTHENTIC recipes.
- products in supermarkets – harvested, processed and transported via elaborate systems – are touted as ORGANIC.
- highly edited, produced and staged shows are called REALITY TV.
When a candidate calls for “LAW & ORDER” in a time of unprecedented peace, the chaos he and his supporters fear is at least partly SPIRITUAL.
The death of God, the complexity of modern institutions, globalization, the resistance to colonialism and patriarchy have all contributed to an explosion of doubts.
But the greatest cause of uncertainty is almost certainly the result of greed. Over the last 40 years, the wealthiest have effectively campaigned to increase the amount of RISK and INSECURITY that others must bear; the vast majority must live in FEAR so that a tiny minority can enjoy certain returns on their investments.
This is the TERROR that drives so many Americans to support Trump. (Expanding social SECURITY would probably convert most Trump voters – and maybe even some Trump supporters.)
But the political is almost always reactive, not proactive. It’s a reaction to economic, moral AND intellectual crises. Addressing one but not the others will lead to pyrrhic victories and eventual disaster.
In this time of uncertainty, the gravest danger we face is to become fundamentalists – in our faith, in our politics, in our tastes.
It is tempting to replace one scapegoat with another – but the only way out of this labyrinth is to reject scapegoats altogether.
It may be that learning to live with doubt is an essential capacity for today.
- If you enjoy spirituality, consider reading a book called Fear & Trembling.
- If you enjoy celebrity gossip, considering following the performer Joanne The Scammer.
- If you enjoy sports, consider supporting the athletes who are dubbed blade runners.
- If you are invested in your ethnic identity, consider celebrating modern hybrids alongside those who claim to be of pure blood and ancient ancestry.