I confess. I did it. I allowed myself to e drawn into a Facebook discussion with an avid Trump supporter. I just couldn’t keep quiet when she said Hillary is a criminal and should be behind bars, and Donald Trump, that lily-white perfect being, is a victim of media conspiracy. It seems folks, he doesn’t really have a temper, never made fun of a handicapped person, is not racist, misogynist, etc. and it would be perfectly safe to give him the nuclear codes (one of my big fears).
All that negative stuff about him? It’s all the media’s fault. To me, the media has given him a free ride for way too long—I swore in recent weeks that Chuck Todd of Meet the Press was his campaign manager. Today Trump said media shouldn’t fact check debates because Lester Holt is a Democrat—turns out he’s a registered Republican.
What struck me though about this very determined lady—she kept writing me after I suggested we call the whole thing off—was her focus on a conspiracy against Trump. To me, the idea is patently ridiculous, but since the Kennedy assassination, our country has been obsessed with conspiracy theories. It’s always an “us against them” kind of theory that pits the individual, god-fearing citizen against the government.
Frankly I think the most obvious conspiracy currently is the one the Republicans have been carrying on against Hillary for the last 25 years. It explains why so many people think she’s a common criminal. But that’s not the point here—the point is conspiracy theories and passionate defenses.
I was struck by the passion with which this woman defended Trump. And then I went on to a post from a Bernie supporter, who brought up the defense that “they” (read established Democrats) were never going to let Bernice win. It was a conspiracy. Well, folks, Bernie Sanders hadn’t been a Democrat for long, in terms of service to the party, he hadn’t paid his dues, and suddenly he came out of nowhere to run for president. What he achieved was remarkable, and I hope many of his ideas are incorporated into the party platform. But there was no conspiracy—he just wasn’t part of the Democratic Party’s process. Of course that’s what he built his appeal on, and it almost got him there but not quite.
I’m beginning to think that the more a person knows, even instinctively, that they’re defending a lost cause, the more passionate they become in defending it.
Please, Lord, help me to pass by those passionate defenses and keep my nose in my own business.