Thursday, September 6, 2012
Socialists vs. Racists: Political Conditioning and You
But because I'm an idealist at heart, and my hopeless hope hasn't been completely ripped from my chest, I went back over to Crooks and Liars recently to wade back into the madness. Today, I read an article there about why we should have a "serious discussion about race." The author was lamenting how conservatives lament the race card. Of course, when it came time to point fingers to blame someone for "the race card," the Right Wing caught the blame.
I thought about it for a moment. Yes, why don't we have a serious discussion about race? Let's just sit down and talk about it. But then I thought about how this conversation would go. Here's a snippet of how the scenario played out in my mind.
Bartender: So Mr. Busey, what will you have today?
Gary Busey: I'll have a black russian.
Bartender: Oh, I'm sorry Mr. Busey, but we're out of coffee liqeuer.
Gary Busey: Oh, so you only do white russians eh? You racist son of a bitch!
Bartender: Sir, I'm not racist, we just don't have the right ingredients to give you what you want.
Gary Busey: Well, why don't you just go out and buy some?
Bartender: I'm sorry, Mr. Busey, but it's just not in our budget. We have to wait until the end of the month. There's just not a high enough demand to justify . . .
Gary Busey: Oh, so there's enough for white russians but not black russians? I see. Look me in the eye and tell me you're not racist!!!
Bartender: Mr. Busey, I assure you, I'm not racist.
Gary Busey: BULLSHIT!!! YOU'RE LYING!!!
And that's pretty much how it would go. Even if you looked them dead in the eye and swore on the God they know you worship, they'd never believe you when you tell them you're not racist. But don't think you're getting away conservatives. You're just as bad.
Let's play a little word association. I'm going to say a phrase, and you say the first thing that comes to your mind. Ready?
Uh oh, I think I just heard a few people shout "SOCIALISM!" Maybe some of you were even brave enough to let the big "C-Word" out (Communism . . . minds out of the gutter please). My point, in case you haven't figured it out or neglected to read the title, is that this stuff is all about political conditioning.
Both parties have conditioned a large portion of their electorate to associate certain words and/or phrases with detestable concepts. "Welfare Reform," is "racist," while "social justice," is "socialism." I think I've said this before, but American politics, aside from being a madhouse, is little more than a fictional game of heroes vs. villains. It's the Champions of Justice vs. The Big Bad Racists. It's Joe the Plumber, wrench in hand, vs. The Red Commie Menace!
Serious discussion won't happen until *both* sides turn off their conditioning and stop making this about good vs. evil. Until then, you're all just LARPing.*
*LARP - Live Action Role Play. You can fully understand my insult by following this link.