Beyond the Antics
I’m afraid that I’m becoming accustomed to Trump’s antics. His weekend Presidential tweets were the unsubstantiated accusations of Obama’s wiretapping mixed in with comments on the current TV ratings of The Apprentice. I’m not really shocked by this behavior anymore and I suppose it is better for my adrenal system not to be in continual flight or fight mode. But I feel a real danger in becoming inured to his consistently irrational behavior. On the other hand, perhaps not reacting to his truly bizarre personality will allow me to focus more on matters of content. It’s confusing and I’m already tired of it and it’s only been two months.
On Monday, it was the reinstatement of the slightly revised version of the travel ban. It may be more legal than its predecessor, but it still seems morally wrong and tactically misguided. While I believe in regulating our border to care for our nation, arbitrary closings like this violate the very freedoms that we say we are trying to protect. Rather than protecting us from danger, this executive order adds to the culture of fear and international radicalization that makes terrorism look more attractive to some.
This ban is a symbolic action to rally the faithful through fear and blame. These are such powerful forces in us all, whatever our political persuasion. From this place, the problem can appear to be the other people who are not like me. But we already live in a pluralistic country. This is what we have long touted to the world as our strength – the creativity and energy that happens when different people come together. This diversity is not just something we must tolerate, it has been what has driven the economic and political success of America.
I continue to believe that this tendency to ‘other’ the opposition is one of our biggest challenges. How can we listen beyond our opinion and still stand for inclusion and justice?