And finally, there are the ones essentially saying: Go down with grace, Liberals!! We sure wouldn't have (not with a rigged election, of course!), but we just don't want the same behavior from you, the crazy, emotional Left!
I don't know which fight to pick: the blatant hypocrisy, or the fact that the Right has long ruled solely on emotion-based politics (see: Trump's fear-laden campaign. For further reference, see: War on Drugs. McCarthyism. Barry Goldwater. Ho!).
Instead, to distract from the real issues at hand, I shall pick a fight about this meme, which someone I know gleaned from The Conservative Post:
It was, and still is, a shit show.
Maybe what makes me angry about this meme, or whatever you'd call it, is that it is inaccurately hitting close to a truth. We have become a little soppy about how things make us feel -- something Conservatives flail around and cry about constantly. Our soppiness is also known as political correctness. College campuses are at the forefront of teaching people how to talk about sexual assault, substance use disorder, race, gender versus sex, and so on, as well as promoting awareness of the marginalized perspective. I do realize that the language that has emerged (for instance, cisgender or binary) is threatening to people who are new to it. No one wants to feel stupid. And it can be marginalizing for those who have not undergone the elite training in how to be politically correct. But come on, we also live in an age where it is pretty easy to learn more if you are so compelled. Learning new things is just like masturbation: you only need the Internet and an open mind. Okay now, only kidding. We politically-correct people like to make a joke once in a while.
For those who feel marginalized by an approach that is specifically meant to de-marginalize the marginalized, I'll break it down in two paragraphs. Political correctness begins with understanding that a certain voice (particularly white and male and heterosexual and cisgender, but not always. Please, just for a moment be rational and think about our history) has dominated the conversation for a long, long time, and other voices that have been talked over are asking for respect and space to be heard equally. I know this is an uncomfortable conversation for people who possess a so-called dominant voice. You must recognize that the "dominant" voice has long failed to consider that marginalized people have more authoritative knowledge about certain issues -- such as racism, sexism, homophobia, etc. We know we can't coddle everyone or always say the right thing, but it is not a negative thing to teach people how to communicate effectively cross-culturally. It is not to say that words are more important than action, or that honest and open dialogue is forbidden; it is to teach us that certain assumptions we make can further marginalize those who deserve to be equals at the table. And sometimes - no, often - our opinion IS unnecessary, because so often we speak without really asking ourselves, "Am I really an authority on this? How would I know? Why am I not listening to other people who have first-hand experience?" Politically incorrect is a white person mockingly shouting "ALL LIVES MATTER" to a scared African American mother who fears for her son's life whenever he leaves the house because STATISTICALLY he is more likely to be killed by police than his white peers. Statistics aside, you should recognize her personal experience is valid.
In sum: It's difficult yet possible to learn how to be less of an idiot about others' feelings. I didn't like it when people used to tell me I was "gross" because I have cystic fibrosis. Such experiences did not make me identify as a victim, but I will say that I found it helpful when the age of political correctness kept coworkers from prying into my private life with questions like, "Do you always breath so heavy? Are you going to die? Isn't CF that disease with all the PHLEGM!!??" That is because political correctness is not about celebrating victimhood, as many people have construed it to be. Bottom line, it is about learning how to communicate better with people who didn't grow up in the same silo. I don't see the harm in that, as long as it is not obstructing productive dialogue. And certainly, there are people who can get over-analytical or extreme about this all. But don't miss the forest for the trees.
Speaking of productive: Rather than griping about the "sore losers" in this election, it might be more productive to consider why this particular election was so substantial, resulting in the "whiny" uproar. I don't think it is whiny for my friend to voice worry over the fact that her entire family will likely be deported. How would you feel if you were in her position? There are thousands of American children of immigrants who will end up in foster care. We have a privately-run internment system that is already violating human rights, and Trump's plan to overload the system will only make it worse. How whiny we are! I don't think it is whiny that women are sharing their experiences of sexual assault that they have encountered since the president-elect set the tone that men can "grab pussy" without permission. I don't think it is whiny that Muslims are afraid that their basic Constitutional rights may be stripped because Trump and much of his electorate have never educated themselves on Islam, or ISIS for that matter -- two very different things, everybody. I don't think it is whiny for people with disabilities to fear they may lose their medical coverage. For me, I may have to watch as a new administration undoes all the evidence-based progress we have made in criminal justice reforms, while they operate in the name of Fear and Tough on Crime Politics (these approaches, by the way, have already been tried and empirically proven ineffective and an expensive burden on taxpayers. Ironic that Conservatives are in support, isn't it?). I shouldn't go on, because I am sure that anyone who disagrees has stopped reading by now, and anyone who agrees and decided they can't help but keep reading this rant & ramble already knows what I am talking about.
I think we sound "whiny" to Conservatives because they are sick and tired of not listening. It takes a lot of energy to block people out, especially as they become more vocal in this age of political correctness. We must be exhausting.
Back on track. The meme above. What bothers me most about this Conservative Post post is the fact that 18 year olds ARE still dying at war. They are, in fact, VOLUNTARILY enlisting to fight for your freedom while you fart around on the Internet all day. They are dying in Mosul right now, as we sit and flap our mouths.
Finally, we are faced with the utterly illogical argument in the meme above. Just because a college student hasn't gone to war doesn't mean his or her opinion isn't valid; nor does it mean he or she does not know suffering. When I was in college, everyone appeared casual and carefree on the outside, but that didn't mean they lacked wisdom. I had friends who had endured cancer and serious personal loss. I knew many who had fled civil war and genocide, witnessed neighbors blown up in front of them. Others had served the US, or were in the reserves. Others had admirable compassion for the people around them, and they knew how to respect others who were different from them. They committed their time tirelessly to public service and improving their communities.
Besides, don't we wish less suffering on the generations that follow us? Don't we want better things for our children and grandchildren? Why does it make sense, then, to disregard their voice if they haven't experienced the mind-shattering sacrifice of combat? This only makes sense if one believes that nothing a college kid says is valid to begin with, which is irritatingly circular and myopic if you ask me.
People have built up so much bitterness that they are unable to form logical dialogue. They would rather spew hateful nonsense than attempt listening beyond the voices in their own heads. I don't just say this of Conservatives, though I do see a lot of complaining about the complainers going on. Once the Left is done grieving about this monstrous political loss, we will all need to communicate with a Conservative-run House, Senate, SCOTUS, & erghabjdsadspresident and find some common ground, even if the common ground is that we are both willing to fight for what we believe in.
I do hope that better dialogue can overcome the deep divide. But not for a second should we believe it is trivial to fight for racial equality, respectful treatment of women, reproductive rights, gender identity rights, religious freedom, a more effective and humane criminal justice system, and so on.
Even compared to Normandy.