Sunday, March 13, 2016

Stuff I Don't Understand

What sense does any of this make?

Why should state legislators who oppose abortion because they contend that a fetus is already a full-human person, and will feel pain if a woman aborts a pregnancy, object to that woman being educated about and able to obtain contraceptives that would obviate the need for either an abortion or an unwanted pregnancy? Why do folks complaining that we spend too much to feed and clothe poor women's proliferating offspring oppose making sure those poor women understand and can afford contraceptives?

For that matter, should anyone be allowed to oppose abortion who hasn't adopted at least three unwanted children? Shouldn't folks who advocate increasing the burden of unwanted children be required to pitch in to deal with the problem?

Why are conservatives, particularly Christian conservatives, flocking to support an egomaniac with a slew of divorces and bankruptcies in his background?

Why are folks who supposedly care about families so unconcerned that the scientific community, as measured by peer-reviewed papers, is nearly unanimous that there's an urgent need (if it ain't already too late!) to act to mitigate the environmental damage we're doing to our kids' and grandkids' futures?
For that matter, when the Koch brothers and oil-and-gas organizations trot out the same obfuscation tactics against climate-change that the tobacco industry turned to in desperation, often using the same P.R. minions as front-men and front-women, why are people so slow to see through them?

Why don't their constituents see through legislators who are well-paid by private prison profiteers and duly push for draconian sentencing laws that even criminologists and cops now see are wrong?
Why do folks who supposedly want to balance governmental budgets push for more costly wars and longer costly prison sentences while decreasing governmental income by pushing tax breaks for corporations and the super-rich? 

For that matter, why do many of those folks oppose having their states legalize and tax marijuana?
Why are people who purport to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ the loudest advocates of un-Christian conduct toward poor immigrants?

Why do folks who purport to value life and children say we should leave kids in orphanages rather than allow them the love and care of gay couples who want them? 

Why do some folks think that taking wildlife refuges away from the public to have them destroyed by private profit-makers somehow helps the public?

Why do some folks, who claim to honor freedom and the U.S. Constitution, favor restrictions on people's freedoms regarding speech, privacy, and their own bodies, but argue that the least regulation regarding guns is unconstitutional? 

On the other hand, how do others, who've read about Prohibition and lived through the fruitless and wasteful “War on Drugs” outlawing marijuana, suppose that although those prohibitions didn't work (while eroding respect for law and increasing respect for law-breakers), outlawing all guns would somehow work just fine?

I don't have answers. I do suspect that folks get too trapped in their ideologies to consider and analyze facts in a careful way. Quite probably, a great numbers of citizens, distracted by television and making a living and raising children, just don't care. Or don't care enough to study any issues.

I do have a final question. We are not in Congress. Or the state legislature. We citizens aren't being paid off by corporations. Why don't we talk to each other? Why don't we communicate honestly instead of behaving like armed camps in a war zone, sniping snidely at each other but never risking human connections with folks we don't agree with? 

[The above column appeared in the Las Cruces Sun-News this morning, Sunday, 14 March, is up on the newspaper's website under "Opinion", and will appear shortly on the KRWG-TV website  [click "News" then "Local Viewpoints"] -- so please feel free to comment here and/or on either of those sites.]

[There are also a few things I do understand, including (I think) the appeal of Donald Trump.  Many people are angry about many things.  Trump stands up and says, "I'm pissed off!"  A whole lot of people shout, "Right on!" without really assessing whether his (largely feigned) anger arises from the same sources as theirs.  Further, he offers easy answers.   People like that.  They forget or fail to notice that he can't explain even superficially how he'd accomplish any of what he promises.  Further, the field of contestants in the Republican race is even less appealing than usual: Rubio is a pretty face saying whatever seems likely to go over well, a cipher, really; Cruz is the most single-mindedly self-promoting member of the U.S. Senate, a body of men and women notoriously un-shy about tooting their own horns; Kasich seems reasonable and at times even sweet-natured, but unexciting, particularly to the Republican "base."  I'd prefer either of the two leading Democrats; without question; though with concerns there too.  But those concerns pale beside the severe damage electing any of the leading Republicans would do.]
[14March note: just read this interesting column by Paul Krugman offering a more perspicacious view on why we shouldn't be surprised by Donald Trump.]
[14March note: just read this Bloomberg News report on the many reasons Republican U.S. Senators don't much care for Ted Cruz.  Many show his exceptional self-obsession.  Some could be viewed as saying less about him than about the Senate Republicans; but even the tamer ones show a man more obsessed with presenting himself as he wants to be seen than with reality, pragmatics, or the convenience of others.  I get it, a few could just mean he's strictly tied to his convictions; but you kind of want someone a little different as President.]

1 comment:

  1. I understand Trump! (Simple, yet complex.)