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January 11, 2011

How Did We Get To This Place

My heart is sick about the extreme hate and violence in this country today. The past ten years have gotten worse than anything I could have imagined growing up in this country. Growing up in a dysfunctional family was difficult, but there was a patriotism that we learned by example from adults around us. Listening to the adults talking about politics did not seem to cause anger enough to get a gun and shoot someone.

This is a sad time for our country. The news channels that are supposed to be channels of information for the public have for so many years been pushing violence and hatred and have developed following of people being led like sheep.

What happened to the belief that every human being born has rights. God given if you believe in a god. Not one person is worth more than another. I don't agree with lots of politicians and media personalities but I do not want them dead. I do not hate another human being. Nor do I wish anyone harm. There have been some horrible deeds done to me a few times in my life but I still do not hate any of the people responsible for my pain.

How did things get to the place that violence is exciting, and thrilling, and laughed about? Blatant disrespect and threats are tolerated like never before. I feel so sorry for the young people growing into adults in the country today being taught to ignore education and hate Jews and blacks and Mexicans and Muslims. And on and on. That white people are the only ones who are worthy, and the founding fathers didn't mean some of the things they put into the constitution. What is going to happen to this earth we all have share when all the Jews decide to hate all the rest of the people and all the Mexicans hate all others and the Blacks hate and on an on? This type of thinking is putting people back in the days of the first settlers arriving in a country already inhabited by human beings. Settlers who brought egos, hatred, dishonesty, disease, and believed their god wanted them to take what they wanted in the new country. Technology continues to make progress while intelligence and acceptance and humanity are sliding backward.

I am sending this letter to everyone I know. All of us were shocked by 9/11 and it will not go away. But going to the extreme hatred brings us to the place of being just like the people responsible for 9/11; murderers, terrorists, intent on destroying lives and families and cities and a unity in a country. Using 9/11 as an excuse to kill today is worse than ignorant; it is a lie. Grow the hell up and stop acting like ranting, spoiled, bitchy children.

This is a simple little letter and it won't hurt my feelings to be laughed at or ignored. I still have a right to speak out. I am a child of the sixties remember. If we as a people have not learned how to get along since that time, heaven help us.

47 comments:

Gary's third pottery blog said...

YOU SAID it Cici, and thanks :)

Rock Chef said...

Very well said!

But I don't see things getting better. With the world economy going like it is, I see the world becoming more violent, bigoted and hateful.

DJan said...

It is a very sad day when half of the world's population hates the other half. I think, like many of your blogging friends do, that the direction of this country is moving away from Christian forgiveness, live and let live, and towards Hate Thy Neighbor. I see the same message you have here in many blogs today. My individual solution is to spread love wherever I can.

Jeanie said...

Your words are thoughtful, heart-felt and well stated. It expresses the heart-sickness and frustration so many of us are feeling now. Thank you for putting words to the feelings.

savannah said...

well done you! thanks for the encouragement. we will all get through this together if people don't give up hope. xoxoxo

Reverend Awesome said...

Really good post.
Let's keep hoping we can come together. I know I won't give up without a fight (not the fist kind).

Sometimes we gotta get knocked down to get up.

Hilary said...

Well said, TB. There have been so many heartbreaking events because of hatred.

Syd said...

Eventually, the hispanics and Afican Americans will outnumber and vote out the white extreme right. It is a mathematical certainty. Time will change the politics of this country. I just hope that we don't implode in the mean time.

Ina in Alaska said...

Amen Sister! and to murder those souls (including a 9 year old girl!) in cold blood... horrifying. I am sick about all of this. Cici, thanks for saying that. xoxo

Brian Miller said...

no, your voice is heard and needs to be...we are in a precarious place at this point in our nations history...

Eileen said...

We got here because we choose to see people and situations only in the negative, myself included.
We see something in a person or a situation that we don't like or we don't agree with and suddenly that is the only way we view that person or that situation, in a very angry, negative aura.
"If you don't think the way I do, I hate you", "If you don't live the lifestyle I choose, I hate you", "If you don't vote the way I vote, I hate you", "If your political views are different from mine, I hate you", it's intolerance to the hilt today.
I may not be as bad as some, or as outspoken as some, but my small contributions to the negative certainly do not help.

I am going to try to find the 'good', or at least try to find common ground in each person I differ with, and with each situation that may arise.

Thank you for this post.
All the best,
Eileen

lisleman said...

thanks for posting this. As you know I agree with you.

I've written/commented before about the amplifier effect our media and internet produces. 24/7 news, blogs, social media sites provide an amplifier for the extremes to spread their hate. For example remember that media seeking "minister" in FL that planned to burn holy books? His stupid hateful idea received too much attention. These amplifiers are not going away but we could understand that much of it is noise that should be filtered out.

It was great to see that a moment of silence was held yesterday for the victims.

ellen abbott said...

It will continue to be this way until we stop tolerating it. What needs to happen is that every time a person encounters hatefulness and violent speech, we speak against it. It's hard to speak against a political or radio personality when you just hear something in the media, but it can be accomplished on a personal. Anytime you personally hear someone use that sort of language, call them out on it. In a nice way of course. Speak up and tell them that that sort of language will not be tolerated. unremarked.

Stickup Artist said...

You do well to speak out. I think there may be many like myself, who are silent with despair and try to shut it all out because it is so painful living in the cultural atmosphere you so accurately describe. It is time to bravely come out of the shadows, even if just to say this is not the way I want to live. I choose compassion and love.

Shadow said...

you go girl! i am speechless by what is happening around the world of late.

Kristina P. said...

It really is so tragic. And unfortunately, not shocking anymore.

Jeni said...

Was it you -or another blogger -who wrote the other day, questioning whether or not one person's voice or actions can possibly make a positive difference? When one looks at what a difference one person's actions can make -as in this shooter's destruction -then surely if enough of us believe and practice the words "Let it begin with me" that we too can make a difference in our society today. There are very few things that I hate but note they are things, not people. I don't like to see or hear the word "hate" as often it seems to be tossed around so easily, so randomly, that people don't even think about the meaning of what they say they hate. I hate bias, prejudice, war, injustice and sometimes, I think I kind of hate bits and pieces of our government when the leaders don't seem to use common sense in their moves and decisions. We have all these people who proclaim to follow various religions and yet, some of those same people also have so much hatred within them towards others, it boggles the mind how they can then say that they are a follower of a wonderful religion. Love thy neighbor as thyself -is that such a hard thing to do? Do unto others as you would have done unto you. Also another great tenet that people often quote and yet, is it really followed too?
Really now, if we truly do believe in peace on earth, then let it begin with ME! Each of us in unison now, not just saying those words, but believing and doing, taking action where ever possible and maybe, just maybe, we can make a difference. Like the little engine "I think I can, I think I can." And yes, WE can!

TALON said...

The most painful of all - the innocent victims...

blueviolet said...

I often wonder how people can point fingers at the middle east when they are spewing equal amounts of hatred at their fellow countrymen.

LL Cool Joe said...

It's a sad time for this world. So many bloggers are talking about this right now, all with slightly different views, but the one thing that everyone is in agreement about is all the innocent victims that get caught in the firing line, literally.

Tragic. :(

Fireblossom said...

Amen.

KleinsteMotte said...

Yes this is most sad. Whatever is it that causes brains to respond so negatively?

gayle said...

You have written this so very well! I too am so worried about this world!

Kazzy said...

There have always been crazies, but it is so much easier to hear about them now.

I was really sad this weekendwhen I heard about the shooting.

Mama Zen said...

Another Amen.

Jillsy Girl said...

I think that 24/7 news does society an injustice. How much news is there to keep the average person's attention? Obviously, not enough to go non-stop 24/7. So, what does the media do? They create news for ratings, and then each of the stations have to one-up each other with garbage and violence. It's pathetic. Long gone are the days of the Walter Cronkite news.

Well said, TB!

Joanna Jenkins said...

Amen Techno. When will we learn from our past mistakes. Big sigh.
jj

heartinsanfrancisco said...

It's really sad that with all our technological advances, we can't advance our own souls from one generation to the next. There does seem to be more hate in the world than I remember as another 60's child, more arrogance and egotism and far more weapons. If we don't change our ways, we are doomed, and so are all the people we love.

Bernie said...

Almost quit blogging when I went to a blog and it was titled "A Congresswoman was Shot - So What. I read it and almost threw up, it was so disgusting. This man was able to quote scripture, and the constitution and he was disgusting. His interpretation is sure different from mine. I would never have seen it if a friend hadn't e-mailed me to go read it. There are many sick people in the world, I just keep praying and somehow in my heart I know the good will over come the evil, I truly believe this, and the more good people who blog and post will drown the words of this poor pathetic man and those like him. Your letter is very much needed right now my friend......:-)Hugs

Life with Kaishon said...

It is so heartbreaking. How did it happen? I just don't get it. It hurts my heart to think of it.

Silver Strands said...

Indeed.

Robert the Skeptic said...

We now have a culture where television entertainment is based on belittling and humiliating people, such as "Hell's Kitchen", The "Apprentice", and many others. We find entertainment value in seeing others abused and in vicariously watching their pain.

If this is the kind of society we value, it is not a very short step into perpetrating violence against people for entertainment value.

secret agent woman said...

First, I completely agree about violence and the disturbing degree of hatred. It sickens me and worries me for our future.

But I don't think it's really anything new. Maybe a new form of something old. Public torture, shaming and even execution as a form of entertainment goes way back. And if you look at movies, current and older, whenever there is a fight the people surrounding are laughing. Laughing! What does it say about us as people that so many cite "A Christmas Story" as their favorite holiday movie. How does one kid taking an unnecessarily violent revenge on his tormentor fit with the Christian message of love and compassion and forgiveness. I personally don't believe in a god, but I do believe in Love. Until most of us can agree that violence has no place in our lives, things will stay as bad as they are.

Barbara Shallue said...

I totally agree with you - too much hatred and ugliness and misunderstanding and misplaced pride. I agree with what's been said about 24/7 news - the media sensationalizes and tints the news, rather than just reporting it - it's about ratings, not truth. The rest of us are guilty for watching it and believing it.

deb said...

it's terrifying and sad,
and I wonder if fear is at the base of so much of it,
fear of economic loss and instability.

I'd like to think that at the core people would rather do good, and I wonder what keeps them so volatile. It 's like creating a war time mentality when there isn't one or something.

I do think that the shooter had mental issues , and the whole gun toting thing is ridiculous.

Lori said...

Amen! It makes my heart sick and sad also. This is a great letter/post that speaks wisely of what has been happening in our country. XX

Kulio said...

Preach it!! Thanks for saying it, technobabe.

Cricket said...

Yep. There it is. Well said.

One of my favorite lines, from, I think, Hannah and Her Sisters: "If Jesus came back today and saw all the things being done in his name, he would never stop throwing up."

Big Dave T said...

Does seem that we've left the information age behind and have entered the opinion age, where the media feels it necessary to give its own spin to every story it reports. Almost makes me want to give up on watching the news.

I think many of the ethnic and racial animosities are deep-rooted and complex. Wish it were as easy as saying "let's all grow up and get along." But maybe if enough people like you spread the word . . .

Debbie said...

Well done! I don't know how we got here or how we climb out of this hole.

MikeWJ at Too Many Mornings said...

I don't want to hear any more stories about people shooting people, especially children. I'm just tired of it, and it makes me sad. I cried when I heard about that little girl getting shot. It's not right. I wish guns had never been invented.

People need to be more careful with their language, which has a power that can incite hatred or kindness.

Shadowthorne @ Ramzu Zahini said...

Hate is a virus. Virulent and dangerous. Although I am not really a nice person, I try to channel the hate somewhere safer. :P

tattytiara said...

Everything I see or hear with a message that promotes love or peace I'm promoting and repeating and pushing forward. We need to flood society with sentiments of unity and love.

Anne H said...

Another thought - provoking post, TechnoBabe!
By contrast, beauty and friendship mean even that much more in such unusual times.
PS - Thanks for yours!

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Mankind has never been kind. In the Roman collesium, gladiators died for the amusement of the masses. Europeans arrived on this continent and were gleeful that the natives here possessed few weapons and no unity, the easier to be exploited. Read the letter of Columbus to his King to see that expressed in cruel prose.

This country's wealth was at first amassed by the benefit of slavery and exploitation of the "inferior" races.

The robber barons of the 1800 and 1900's crushed any who got in their path. This dark strain in humanity has been ignored until now it has festered into nightmare.

Like Rock Chef wrote, I do not foresee this getting anything but worse.

We must become the change we wish to see. You wrote an insightful post. Thanks, Roland

Marla said...

We need to speak the truth. We need to hear the truth. We also need action. Action as parents in raising our children to know right from wrong, truth from lie and love from hate. We need to practice that which we want our children to live out.

I am not stupid. I know many people don't raise their children that way. So we then need to be mentors to those "children" no matter what age they are, and show them there is another way.

See....your excellent post got me ranting. :-)

CherylK said...

I couldn't agree more! Intolerance is running rampant and peace seems farther away than ever. I think it's really the media, though, that fan the flames. Everything is analyzed to death. So sad.