Contrarian nation

I don’t know if we’ve always been this way, and social media is making it more obvious, but we seem to have become a nation of contrarians. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I think it can be counter-productive at time, and certainly breeds misdirected anger. This may not be news to anybody, but it feels new to me. I spent some time this weekend listening to a family member rant about a couple of things this weekend…things that the internet seems to be ranting about also. Why can’t men and women just use the “right” bathrooms? Why didn’t they shoot the kid instead of the gorilla? On the first one, it was pretty clear that this family member thought that trans women should use the women’s room, and that trans men should use the men’s room, and that it was just a gut reaction to be angry and argumentative for no good reason. The gorilla thing is an other story, that probably makes this feeling I have stronger.

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Pursuit of Happiness

I’m a generally happy person in some ways, a bit melancholy and down in others. Some of it depends on the day, or maybe the way the planets are aligned for all I can figure out. I certainly let people bring me down, probably more than I should. I am deeply saddened by people being bigoted and drawing conclusions based on misinformation. People tell me that I have to let that go, and that I shouldn’t let it bother me, but that requires some control over what does and doesn’t make me sad. Control that I simply don’t possess. It makes me wonder if anybody has that kind of control. Can anybody really decide that something isn’t going to make the sad, and then, poof, it doesn’t make them sad anymore? That seems so foreign to me, but a superpower I would really like to have.

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The world is going to hell…um, not really

When I talk to people who support a candidate like Donald Trump, they seem almost completely driven by this crippling fear that the world is on fire, that the United States is falling apart, and that Washington is either helping this happen, or not effectively doing anything about it. I have to say that if I believed all of that was true, I could imagine the appeal of a candidate like Donald Trump. The problem is this: almost none of the fears that these people have are rooted in reality. Let’s take a bit to look at some things that might frighten us.

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Bathrooms and buttheads

I had been mostly ignoring the transgender bathroom issue, believing in my core that it was simply a function of old, misinformed people running the show in the states where this has become an issue. I still think that’s true, but for some reason, likely triggered by a family member posting something on FaceBook about boycotting Target because of their bathroom policy (which may not even be their policy), this has come to the front of my brain, and this is where the front of my brain comes to the page.

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