At What Do I Know, Steve (who knows how little he knows but who knows more than most people and is very wise) mentions that people just don't think deeply. We have a major political scandal going on with our Republican congressman with some scary issues that few reporters are talking about. I won't even attempt to write about the issues-- I read of them and consider them, but there is no one who I can really talk to about them. My friends are mostly Republicans, and they defend their hero and won't hear a word of him that is bad. They slam his opponent who I have met and also like-- the slamming is the degrading snickering as opposed to real discussion. They do not talk about new information-- they rehash what they have read or heard by popular radio talk show hosts who are just as mean as they are and who they imitate, and there is no real exchange of ideas. (I read the blogs about what is going on and filter information for myself. When I go to the polls I do so with a heavy heart, although we always have a party here because it is Election Day and we eat cookies with elephants and donkeys on them. I am a nerd-- I named my eldest for a teacher who told us that voting was a sacred right. No, she was not named Tiger-- but she may as well have been!)
Steve asks, "What does it take to get a significant part of the population to get it? Or is the distraction industry - sports, video games, celebrity gossip, etc. - too powerful for people to attend to protecting the US Constitution?" I thought about it and commented on it, even though I am not worthy to say anything at his blog. Most soccer mommies like myself don't speak deeply-- there will be people who tell me to speak for myself, but when you hear many people talk at soccer games or places where we meet to talk, you realize that they communicate because of their need to interact, not to get to know more information. I never click on anything that has the names of certain celebrities or their spouses, yet many of these people obsess over them. At my massage school, there were people who didn't know that our former president Bill's wife was out of the race. Alaska had legislation going to regulate massage therapists yet none of them knew what it was or that it was tabled because (surprise!) the massage therapist board was to disorganized to work with the politicians. I was seriously out of place for bringing things up-- I politely pushed them due to the importance, but my comments fell flat while those under 30 talked nonstop about the 70's Show.
When I worked at Super~Mart, our newly elected governor came in. I nearly had a heart attack when she saw me and called me by name-- I'd volunteered for her but was delighted that she remembered me. Afterward I went on break and was in the back, "Our governor shops at Super~Mart! She knows who I am!" A cow-orker said, "Who'dat?" Then said the name of a governor from the 1970's. I said no, it was Sarah Palin. Someone asked if she was a senator, the daughter of the man she replaced. The first woman said, "What do I know? I don't vote!" She smacked the table and laughed at herself as did the several women sitting at her table. (Those women were popular there-- reverse of highschool where the smart popular people were the leaders. I was not part of the Super~Mart group.) One of the supervisors was watching me and told me to meet him in the store when I got off break.
He explained to me the mantality of many of the people I worked with, "You will never change them." He said that so many had so much going on, working for just above minimum wage, and not really doing anything more intellectual than arguing about their cable bills. Anything that requires real thinking escaped many of them, which was why they would at someplace like the Super~Mart until they priced themselves out of a job-- they'd not get promoted, they'd get regular raises until the company maxxed them out at a certain amount per hour, then be shown the door as managers looked for a reason to fire them and have cheaper labor, then they'd take a pay cut and work the same job elsewhere.
Since having children, my own mind has gotten shallow, and my world has shrunk. I used to be smart but Russian sank me and I failed Transformational Grammar. What is this about? I'd wanted to be a doctor at one time and now I can't even think a sentence diagram through!
I care very much about political events and the history that is being made as we live right now, but it's hard to get too deep when first, I have few friends who understand what is happening who I can talk to abou this, then I am getting pulled in 15 directions anyway.
Several years ago, there was a woman running for my district's seat on the lagislature. A lot of my friends liked her-- I prefered a gentleman who I'd met through another friend. His parents were teachers and he had been a professor. I could listen to him talk and never tire of him. The most effervescent candiate won and we became friends. ANYWAY-- the woman that I am tlaking about: when asked why she was running, she admitted that she'd been thinking about it then was on vaccation in another state when she saw a sign to elicit votes and the sign had the name of another woman with her name and it was a sign from God! She wasn't running because she had great ideas-- she was running because she had a few cool ideas and then there was this sign from God. . . I asked one of my acquaintences why she was supporting her and her mouth gawped open and then she very seriously said, "She just makes sense." WTF? I asked her the three top things she stood for in her mind that would make her good. She named three things off the conservative party platform that this woman backed, but I didn't even know if the candiate understood why she supported them. I said nothing but thought, "I can't believe your vote is worth the same as mine!" Several other supporters would say the same thing. "She just makes sense."
How many people vote or support people because their friends support them? How many people use one issue to vote on and don't care for the others?
Steve really got me to thinking in whatever capacity I am capable of it. Some days, as a parent, I am so worn out that I don't stay on top of my children's behaviour as much as I should. With my kids, I can fortunately go back and correct the problems. But as Steve pointed out, our costitution is being attacked. We cannot be exhausted and say, "I'll get to that later. I'm tired right now." We need to really dig deeper into the facts, question the sources without putting them down for speaking out and try to understand the real issues at hand, but not a significant portion of us are willing to do so.