Sunday, August 31, 2008

Black or White

Social Issues are very complicated issues. They have a lot of nuance and subtlety built into their nature because you are dealing with very personal concerns. Most everyone (except the highest leaders in the land) can agree that the economy ain't so great at the moment. Most everyone can agree that health care should be easier to get. But we can't all seem to so easily agree on things like gun control, abortion, education, civil rights, etc. This is because these issues differ hugely from personal experience to personal experience, and subsequently any regulation on these issues will affect people greatly in a very personal way.

The Republican Machine understands something about the vast, majority American public - something crucially important. We enjoy remaining uneducated. It's too much talking head stuff, and we don't really have the time to discern the finer points. We live in an age where we want things boiled down to a status on Facebook. Afterall, we're too busy losing our jobs, trying to get healthcare, and worrying about where the next paycheck will come from to really listen and understand these issues. This the Republican Machine knows and knows well.

And so they help us. They give it to us in very basic, black-or-white, this-or-that ways.

Pro-Life or Baby-Killer

Gun Control:
Get to have guns or Don't get to have guns

Civil Rights:
Unsanctified marriage or Sanctified marriage.

and so on and so forth.

This way, we get to choose more easily. It's like being back in the middle school cafeteria where the options were PIZZA or MYSTERY MEAT. Who wasn't going to choose PIZZA!??

The truth is, though, that these issues are not that simple. At all. They never will be. They are very, very, complicated issues. And distilling them down to such ridiculous empirical either/or's is not only bullshit, but it's incredibly unfair to the American people.

I think John McCain, and the social conservatives in this country, are betting a lot on the American people's fear of all choices Black-or-White.

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