Controversy – Gary Young MySpace Blog

Controversy

Went mountain biking today.  It was horrible.  You really do have to use forethought with strenuous exercise.  Apparently my body had other priorities because it seemed like no blood and therefore no oxygen was making it to my legs.  And as a side note, I’d welcome vomiting over nausea any day.  It was a struggle.  Next time will be better.

VACATION
Maybe I should go to Vegas.  I’m equivocating over what to do with my days off in September.  Go to the wedding, sure.  But I could spend a day or two in Las Vegas or anywhere else on the west coast.  Maybe Seattle?  Always wanted to see Seattle.  Is Vegas a driving town?  Would I have to rent a car?

Chicago?  Always wanted to visit Chicago.  I wonder if Kurt Elling would be at the Green Mill.  Probably not.  Busy guy.

I’m noticing that when it comes to hotels, you get what you pay for.  I’ve seen some great rates for flight, car, hotel — but the hotels.  Not quality.  Or they’re in Fremont or Milpitas.  I’d rather stay in Cupertino or Mountain View.  San Jose proper if it’s a nice spot.

I don’t know why.  Too nostalgic.  I think it’s especially difficult to enjoy yourself when you’ve got memories and expectations.  Nowadays when I go to the Bay Area it feels hollow.  Empty.  Like going back to your old high school.  I’ve got some good friends there still, but you know how life goes.  They’ve all moved on to other things and phases so it’d be a lot of hit ‘n run socializing.  So maybe I’ll spend my time somewhere else.  Even up around Sacramento.  Heck, I could come back home and hit the beach.  I just want to relax and enjoy some quality human interaction.

DOBSON/OBAMA
Why.  Why?  What are you thinking?

I’m tired of all this religious (differentiating between religion, dogma and the oft overused term “spirituality” or personal quest to examine who, what, where, how, why, huh?) and anti-religious mess.

For Dr. Dobson’s part, he considers some of his friends to be Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Laura Ingraham.  Miserable company, in my opinion.  Some of his politically themed shows reflect this.  Jumping into the political fray to attack a politician with the power of his Christian organization by name is … it demeans everyone.

At a time when people are deciding or outright rejecting anything Christian, his attacking Obama (inaccurately, at that) in that right-wing radio way is beyond the pale.  Religous beliefs being used as a wedge — that’s repulsive.

There are a lot of people who are anti-religion, right, based on a reactionary passion to the bulls— behavior and rantings of Christians and Conservative Christians.  These days it seems like hypocrisy is the only sin to the secular aspect of our culture.  That’s powerful.   And it’s sad to me that people reject metaphysical pursuits because they position themselves in the opposite corner to express their disdain.

Like that’s the only choice there is.  Stupid.  Not stupid because we may disagree, but stupid because basing your decisions on someone else’s goofiness is pretty goofy.  Like when Elton John said that organized religion should be outlawed or something like that.

“You don’t like my gayness?  Well, then you should be outlawed and I believe the opposite of what you believe.”

Ho hum.

You remember a few years ago when Hillary mentioned an African proverb:  “It takes a village to raise a child.”

Conservative talking heads of all ilk jumped on that like rabid pit bulls on a gravy flavored cat.  They said things like, “Listen to that socialist, communist nonsense.  It doesn’t take a village to raise a child, it takes a family — a mom and a dad.”

Then they said things like, “That statement is nonsense in the big government, social programs way that Hillary means it.”

Now, why would anyone jump up to disagree with the sentiment that the community has responsibility to all of its children.    Why did right-wingers go ape?  Because Hillary said it.  And if it’s one thing they like, they love to demonize Hillary Clinton.

Demonize your rhetorical enemy, oversimplify their statements and conveniently package them so that you can have a simple, stationary target to attack.

BINARY POLARIZATION
It seems like we lower ourselves to a binary thought process.  Not logical, but conveniently polarizing.  It’s easier to choose a side and jump into a column of categorization.  To me, there’s no logical reason why being a Democrat or Liberal means that you have to follow all of the dogmatic tenets:  gay marriage, abortion, anti-anti illegal immigration, legalize marijuana, anti-death penalty, environmentalist, affirmative action.  Dreadlocks or braided hair.  Tending toward vegetarianism or veganism.  Man-made global warming.  No nuclear energy.

On the conservative side:  anti-abortion, pro death penalty, no gay marriage, anti-affirmative action, anti-global warming, corporation friendly, etc.

I think very few of us fall into line so easily, but those are some of the dogmatic tenets that you’re expected to concur with.  Otherwise, you’re some kind of out-moded neanderthal.  Even if you don’t agree with some of those ideas, you wouldn’t admit it in mixed company because you’d find yourself backed into a corner.

Why can’t you have your hair braided, be a vegan and think that nuclear power plants are key to alleviating our energy crisis?  Europe seems to be much more comfortable with nuclear energy while Americans are not.  On the other hand, Europeans are very anti-genetically modified food and Americans don’t seem to give a hoot.

Group-think is alive and well.  When’s the last time you heard someone say that we should aggressively protect our borders maybe even using the National Guard AND they want to protect old growth forests or stop navy sonar experiments that harm whales? 

A certain segment of areas we’d think of as Conservative are very outdoorsy.  Hunters, fishers, ranchers.  There must be some ecological streak there.  You’d think that they’d be the first to stand up to the explode-the-top-of-the-mountain-to-get-at-the-coal technique of mining, which then drops a mountain into the surrounding streams and valleys choking the life out of them.

Oh well.  That’s just what’s been in my mind after a week of political news.

OBAMA
For your own sanity, do not read the comments left by users on news sites when there’s an article about Obama.  It’s craziness.

I have to say that I do like Obama’s speeches.  He uses his brain and deals with the complexity of the issue he’s discussing.  He has common sense.  He’s got his own ideals but a sense of realism as well.

I like that.  I don’t know what that will mean as President when there are so many factions to please.  When political and economic power is being thrown around to suit innumerable special interest groups.

Hopefully, we’ll see.

Currently reading :
Tin Roof Blow-Down
By James Lee Burke

2:31 PM – 2 Comments – 0 Kudos – Add CommentEditRemove

S. Flick I

awesome video

Posted by S. Flick I on Jun 29, 2008 8:28 AM
[Remove] [Reply to this]

Gary Young

Isn’t that amazing? I don’t even know why, but it brings me joy.

Posted by Gary Young on Jun 29, 2008 8:46 AM

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