Labels. They help us pigeonhole people and thus begin to own them. In the book of Genesis, one of the powers that was given to Adam was to “name” the animals (Genesis 2:19). That act didn’t make him stronger or more powerful over them, it just gave him an intellectual knowledge over the animals which they could not have themselves. That did not mean he could cross them off his list. His job was to guard and care for them and understand them. Except for the “care” part and “understanding” part this has been the approach of many folks in this country. I am guilty of labeling as well of course. I have been spending a good chunk of this year blasting the right for their seemingly tone-deafness to actual American history and who blast American citizens who do not think the way they do. Fox News has been in my cross-hairs (to use the right’s second amendment orgasmic final solution) ever since they hired “felon” Oliver North (yes a label) and Glenn Beck (not a label). These folks do absolutely nothing for this Republic except stoke fear with their lazy intellectualism for an audience who are already fearful of the future and think that they are alone.This is never good. If I hear negativism and watch the finger pointing long enough, I begin to think it’s true and I am afraid to find out that there is another side to the story. If I did, I may have to change my mind with new information. Oh horrors! a Flip-flopper! Most folks like things black and white without a lot of independent thinking. After all, most Fox viewers seem to buy into the toxic rhetoric lock, stock and brains. When one tries to point out an alternative view, those individuals attack the source as the very thing Fox and right wing radio (you know, the main stream media) are pushing against. If you have ever argued with a fundamentalist on the logic of the Bible you get the idea. There is a point when you drop the discussion because it is so frustrating and not worth the effort anymore (besides hitting your head against a brick wall ain’t fun).
Into this fray comes a post-partisan group called “No Labels“. To read from their purpose is a breath of fresh air in an increasingly toxic environment. Over the week I will look at some of their specific points of moving forward (or as MSNBC says “Lean Forward”). Here are their statements of non-hysterical producing facts:
- Americans are entitled to a government and a political system that works – driven by shared purpose and common sense.
- Americans deserve a government that makes the necessary choices to rein in runaway deficits, secure Social Security and Medicare, and put our country on a viable, sound path going forward.Americans support a government that works to spur employment and economic opportunity by encouraging free and open markets, tempered by sensible regulation.
- Americans want a government that empowers people with the tools for success – from a world-class education to affordable healthcare – provided that it does so in a fiscally prudent way.
- America should be free from discrimination and should embrace the principle of equal opportunity.
- America must be strong and safe, ready and able to protect itself in a world of multiple dangers and uncertainties.
They go on to say:
We can overthrow the tyranny of hyper-partisanship that dominates our political culture today. We can break down the institutions of power that are corroding our system. We can do this because we have the power of numbers. All we have to do is join together.
Maybe after the hysteria of the mid-terms fueled by Beck’s Nazi/evil Soros/Socialism tourettes we can indeed move forward.
I joined and signed the declaration. You?
and so it goes…