Posted in Uncategorized

Dissent, Disrespect, Pettiness and Meanness

My last post contained my feelings about the election. While I didn’t expect anyone to throw me a party, I didn’t expect what did happen.

I used to have a friend who holds opposing political views. When she sent me politics filled emails, I ignored them. She’s entitled to her opinions and I’m entitled to decline to be drawn into an argument.

Comments about my blog posts have to be moderated by me prior to publication. Up until this past week, I’ve approved every comment. The comment my former friend made was knee jerk and insulting. While I was deciding whether I wanted to approve the comment, she sent me an email saying that she and her husband never wanted to see us again, I should only write about my art, and the only reason I posted that blog entry was because I was having a manic or depressive event.

You won’t see her comments because I won’t approve them. She is entitled to her opinions. She has a right to express her opinions. She does not have the right to tell me – or anyone else – that my political views are a function of bipolar disorder.

It’s not necessary for my friends to agree with me for a friendship to continue. Some years back, I supported one candidate and a good friend supported the opponent. My friend, who is still a close friend, gently suggested I reexamine what each candidate had said. Eventually, the candidate I supported lost the primary and the candidate my friend supported, and for whom I voted, won the election. Civil, respectful disagreement.

Saying my political views are a function of bipolar disorder is not civil or respectful. It’s disgusting. I’m struggling to let go of the hurt, but I’m not sure this is something I’ll ever be able to forgive. The friendship is dead; and, at least for now, I am incapable of wanting to revive it.

A couple nights ago, the cast of the show Hamilton stood on stage following the performance and made a polite, respectful request that diversity be respected and accepted. The president elect, who is making it remarkably hard for me to have any respect for him, demanded an apology. Why? Why is disagreement, when presented in a polite, respectful manner, wrong?

This venomous divisiveness scares me. We live in a large, and very small world. A comment made now, is heard around the world in a matter of minutes. How will leaders of the Arab nations respond to the hatred towards Muslims that Trump is making? How will leaders of Latin American countries respond to the viciousness and false accusations Trump hurls towards Latino immigrants? Because of NAFTA, several United States companies have manufacturing plants in Mexico. How will the president of Mexico respond to Trump’s insistence that Mexican immigrants are criminals merely because they were born in Mexico?

We live in a large, and very small world. Effective leaders long ago learned the importance of being able to play nicely with other leaders.

I fear the world events to come.

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Author:

I retired from the Public Defender Dept. November 12, 2015 after 21+ years as a criminal defense attorney. Now, I'm a full time multi-media artist and writer starting on a new adventure. As an artist, I create with beads, fabric, fiber, and ceramic clay. Sometimes separately; sometimes in assorted combinations. You can find my on-line store at: www.debthumanart.com.