I was blessed or cursed, depending on your perspective, with an abundance of the optimism gene. It's allowed me to get through a life that might have killed those weaker or less stubborn. I've always been able to see the positive side of a situation along with the negative. I've always believed that evil can be overcome by good, that hate takes effort and love does not, that humans for all of our flaws, are basically good creatures.
I still believe that, but in the last few months with the advent of the teabagging crazies and their "creative" spelling known as TEABONICS or Texas Schoolbook Learning, infecting the country with such manipulated bigotry and hatred, I have finally accepted that in order to be a decent human being some basic requirements must be met.
First, you must understand the planet is home to many people and they're not all going to look like you, worship the same imaginary friends, embrace your narrow ideology, or have the same definition of truth. If you think it's all about you, then you need to seriously grow up and open your eyes and especially your heart.
Which leads me to the requirement of compassion. If you don't have it, then you really don't have any claims to the title of human being. You're something else, something small and mean, something incomplete and lacking an essential component that says I am more than a list of skin, bone, chemicals, fat, and ego.
If you can look at another human being and consider him or her less than you because he or she does not worship where you do, does not have the same skin color as you do, does not stay within the same gender lines as you, does not speak with the same stress or lack of it on the same syllables of the same words, does not come from the same piece of dirt that held your mother's body as you fell out on it, then your claim to the label of human being is seriously in doubt.
I've said many times that love is easy, it's hate that requires you get up every day and say today I am going to hate, today I'm going to be an intolerant asshat shoving my worldview down everyone's throats. And all day long you have to feed that hate. You have to make up stupid shit about people and then get others to believe it and help you spread it, much as most of the world spreads manure on their crops.
But the crops of those who hate, those who are intolerant, are the mean and hungry gardens of bigotry and intolerance. And the most fallow of those grounds belong to the racist, that fraud of a human being who thinks that people are things to categorize like so many dead insects on a cardboard backing. The only reason to separate human beings into little herds is so they can be separated from the rest of humanity and be at the mercy of bigoted jerks who take out their hatred of life on them.
For many months now, and for a good deal of my life, I've dealt with bigots and racists differently, depending on who they were. I was much more willing to ignore the stereotypical joking of some elderly old fellow who barely remembered his name ,much less understood that his world changed so much that the mildly racist joke that cracked everyone up in his youth, now made his listeners uncomfortable.
I never laughed, but I wasn't strong enough to walk away, especially if he was a relative or the relative of a friend. I called that being tolerant, being accepting of someone who meant no harm, but was merely old and oblivious to the changing mores of the planet.
I don't know if I was wrong to not say anything, to just listen uncomfortably. Was I respecting the elderly or was I helping grow what became the overtly racist and intolerant Teahadists with my silence? If I was wrong, I can console myself with knowing I never had a bit of a problem openly calling out a racist who was motivated by pure hatred and nothing else.
There were several times in my life where I put myself in really stupid situations for the sake of my ethical soul. I don't regret them even though I'm appalled at how oblivious I was to the danger. Idealism is like that. It blinds you to the dangers so you can move forward and make the world a better place. Not everyone survives that leap. I was lucky and lived to raise hell another day.
And because I did, I continue to speak out to the obvious racists. I won't let up on the Teahadists because they are as ugly as the KKK is ugly, as ugly as jackbooted thugs are ugly, as ugly as the Inquisition burning Pagans and other non-Christians in the name of their viscious and bloodthirsty god is ugly. Hate is ugly. Bigotry is ugly. Intolerance is ugly. Selfishness is ugly.
As human beings, we have only one enemy and it the ugliness that ferments in other human beings. I thought it could be defeated by love and yes, in those that still have a heart, those that are not sociopathic thugs, those that can see beyond the smallness of their world view, it can be defeated and made whole by love.
But I also understand there are those who are lost to humanity. They are mean little creatures who both direct the haters and thrive on the hatred they create. They do not know what it means to love authentically. It is all about usage rights with them, things that do not require compassion or understanding.
And yes, many who hate are poorly educated and ignorant. Racists are people who have only had their own race as friends. They are ignorant of other people, cultures, literature, music, ideas, and beliefs. It is a willful ignorance because it is the most easily cured if they wanted to cure themselves.
But they don't because more than anything, bigots and racists are lazy. They don't want to make the effort to understand because it requires doing more than moving sluggishly through a life where everyone but them is calling the shots. People who think for themselves are not easily led.
Freethinkers would never let a hateful, pill-infested moron named Rush Limbaugh tell them what to think, what to believe, and whom to hate. That's for the masses, the ignorant and willfully uneducated "morans" who are too lazy to think for themselves. They are the fodder, the rabble, the used and abused by everyone who has more power and influence. They are nothing and know it, which is why they hate.
And they allow the Becks of the world to yank their very short leashes and command them to take to the streets in support of the very corporations who keep them at the bottom of the shit pile of life. This is beyond stupid. This is lazy, willful ignorance. And it is damaging to the planet, to human beings and all living creatures.
These are the people I will no longer politely turn away from. I will fight them with everything I have. I will expose them for the miserable pieces of human shit they really are. I will write about how easily and stupidly they allow themselves to be manipulated because they are too lazy to take charge of their own lives. I will be mean. I will be nasty. I will beat them over the head with facts. I will humiliate them with truth. I will overpower them with the forces of good that drive me and command me to defeat their forces of evil.
And I will win because love is stronger than hate, peace is more powerful than war, and truth always always wins, even if it takes a while. Do you hear me, losers? Truth ALWAYS wins. And when it does, this is what history will show as your legacy:
As for the rest of us, we'll be working to make a better world, one where all living creatures have an equal right to exist, to share in the bounty of life, love, and yes...happiness. Without mean, hateful people to infect the earth with their vitriol, maybe that happiness thing will be a lot more in reach. Especially if people like me and others keep lifting the rock on hate because we all know it can't survive once exposed to the light. It needs the dank, ugly darkness to survive and decent people are all carrying lights these days to expose you.