You’ve seen them. Those angry people at rallies and being interviewed on TV. I’ve seen them in commentary on this blog and in hateful blogs of their own. Why are people so angry?
Any psychologist – even an armchair one – will tell you that anger often masks fear. In other words, if you display anger, you’re probably fearful about something. The Republicans may fear the loss of the election and Congressional seats. That’s understandable.
But I think there is more going on here than a fear of losing power. Often people are threatened by those who are different from them and Barack Obama is different. He has a funny (to our ears) sounding name, he has an African father and a white mother, he looks black, etc. Also, Obama is super intelligent, thoughtful, and is measured in how he makes decisions. This seems foreign to a lot of people, especially those who don’t value intelligence and education and are married to some rhetoric that tells them how to think and what to do. They say they don’t trust him because they just don’t understand that kind of intellect and ability to analyze and make judgments.
There are also a lot of people afraid of losing what they see as the normal America…the white America, the evangelical America, the dumbed-down America, the bellicose go-to-war and fight-fight-fight America, and the our-country-is-supreme America. What these factions don’t seem to understand is that while Bush and Cheney were the face of that kind of America and tried to perpetuate that facade, the real America (and I’m not talking about the real America Palin talks about) has moved on as has the rest of the world.
We are black, white, Asian, Indian, bi-racial, Muslim, Arab, Jewish, Hispanic, Christian, atheist, and more. We realize we are well behind other industrialized countries in education and need to catch up. More and more of us believe that peace is possible and don’t believe in spending $12 billion a month in Iraq. And we are owned in large part by China and other countries and will go the way of England or Spain and lose world leadership if we don’t bring our focus back to our internal problems and begin to fix them.
We can’t afford anger, hatred, divisiveness, self-appointed moral authority, finger-pointing, and tearing down each other and the country. This is not what our country needs. We need inclusiveness, understanding, working together, building each other up, and hope.
Thanks to HealThisNation.org for the tip on their ads about people wanting real change and hoping for a better future. Here’s one of their great ads. Others are posted on their website and on YouTube.