The following Letter to the Editor was submitted for publication by Treva Harper
So many people are agitated these days. There is a lot going on, but here we will look at the general emotion of panic and fear that has pervaded our society.
Everywhere you turn there are people in a panic over or demanding something. It crosses all ideologies and demographics. This is the worst I’ve seen it in my lifetime. For Democrats and the Progressives, it is fear, anger, and loathing due to Donald Trump winning the election. For Republicans, it is the fear that the swamp will not be drained and that Socialism or Communism will be established in America by the One World Order crowd.
For Christians, it is the fear, excitement, and concern that the Second Coming is about to happen and there is a never-ending list of Panic and apathy to that end. For Muslims, it is the determined effort to bring about the global Caliphate so they can bring about their own religious culmination or end times event. For atheists, it is the constant fear of climate change or the risk of a giant meteor falling to the earth and destroying us all along with the planet. Economists predict a great economic catastrophe every time they want to make more money. Everywhere we turn there is the expectation of some great catastrophic event that is about to occur!
How is one supposed to get through this life without being pressed upon by one of these concepts? It seems everything in our society is demanding we have an opinion on it too. Political people want you to choose a side and help them achieve their goals, Religious people insist they are accurate in their dogma and you must comply. Atheists demand the government implement policies to protect the earth from impending doom.
I am here to ask, what if they are all wrong? Perhaps it is the mere collective panic, fear, determination, and assertion that each perspective has that leaves them demanding to get things their way. Gone is the idea of individualism and the freedom to exist as your own individual with the freedom to choose a political and religious side to our own lives. There is a lot of pressure to join this ideology or that ideology. Everyone who does not agree with that group is a bad, horrible, rotten traitor to the cause.
Now, I do believe there is a great culmination brewing. Yes, I do. However, I do not think it is singularly political or religious but I do think it will determine if we enter a new era of peace and happiness or a revisit to the Dark Ages of old. The only thing I am certain of is that these events will unfold and at least half of America will be grieving about it. If things go badly then nearly all will be in despair. I can hash out my perspective or political opinion on what the best solution should be but I think we have enough opinion flying around to drown us all!
My point is to try and make people see that being ugly and hateful to each other is not the solution. Riots do not make things better. Avoiding thinking there is any problem will not make it go away. However, calm, reasonable discourse that allows others to say things diametrically opposed to what we believe is a good start. Constantly accusing others of diabolical agendas makes us feel superior and secure in our own beliefs but does it really make anything better? Does unfriending people we know on Facebook or Twitter really have an effect on Washington, D.C.?
This problem is exacerbated by the media that drones on and on about political issues so much that virtually no other news is reported on. It does not matter which channel you watch or what pundits you prefer. In the end, all they are doing is keeping us mad at the other side and deepening the rift between neighbors and friends. Yes, I know the issues are of grave importance, I too have my biases. But that does not have me afraid to be friends with those who believe differently than me, so long as they behave civilly about it. I could care less if we disagree! Can we hang out and enjoy associating without discussing inflammatory topics, please?
In the end, I do think there is something coming but I do not think it is one big problem. It occurs to me that it is fueled by all the division and hate between peoples and unless a massive majority wake up and start treating everyone as they wish to be treated then there will indeed be some kind of crisis. Sadly, we will all suffer from it even those on the so-called “winning side”.