internet travels

I was tooling around on stumbleupon when I saw this video on a pro-GOP type site. I did not watch it, because I’m trying to avoid teapartier stuff — they’re so vitriolic and hateful, they leave a bad taste in my mouth and make me nauseous for the rest of the day.

Then I logged onto FB, and saw the same video on a friends profile, with the description: “Muslims throw a fundraiser to help the homeless. The Tea Party shows up. WTF, America?”¬†Curiosity piqued, I watched it. And I do indeed feel sick and nauseous with horror. I had to stop at about the point that the lady was screaming at the Muslim man to, “go home and beat (his) wife, like (he) does every night.”

This is just so sickening and horrifying. I’m completely baffled, and (quite honestly) disappointed in America as a nation. What, the American people are this historically ignorant about where racism and prejudice gets us? I’m not even talking just slavery, as horrific as that blot on our collective history is. Um, the Trail of Tears? Indian reservations? The U.S. eugenics movement, copied by the Nazi party? The “internment camps”? The laws forbidding Chinese immigration? The sterilizations, lynchings, medical experiments, mobs, and genocide that spatter our collective history with blood and tears?

And once again, American citizens are pushing forward and proudly, noisily giving voice to prejudice — they are shouting hateful, vitriolic insults and justifying their cruelty based on prejudice and fear. Are these American citizens helping the homeless? Are they standing in solidarity with women’s and children’s rights? Are they running a benefit to help those in need? No. No, they stand and they condemn those kinder and more humanitarian than themselves.

And what about us? What about the majority of American people, what about the media, what about the government and the police? Why do we sit silent while this dangerous hatred and rhetoric is given not simply equal time, but the same serious consideration and acceptance, as though these people are making a good points that can be weighed on par with reasoned discussion and logic? No, they aren’t! Listen to them! Listen to the vicious, prejudice-laden fear mongering they’re spouting! The only reason these Tea Partiers, these extremists, keep appearing to be a majority is because they’re yelling louder than us!

I’m not saying everyone is a liberal, or a democrat. I’m not saying everyone is an atheist or humanitarian. I am saying that the moderates need to speak up. That those Republicans who disagree with the extremism taking over their party; that the Christians ashamed of the evangelical fundamentalists representing them; that the Independent’s who say, “Well, I want a smaller government, but I’m also pro-abortion,” need to speak up. I’m not the first to say this, and I won’t be the last. But it is time for the moderates to begin to repudiate this message of hatred rippling over our nation.

Stand up for what you believe in. Stand up for human decency, for kindness, for compassion. Stand up for solidarity and friendship and humanitarianism. Stop with the inaction — even inaction is a choice, and every time any of us stay silent in the face of such hatred, we are approving it by our silence. It is time to speak up, to say, “No, I don’t agree,” to show our horror and shame for such disgusting attitudes in our country.


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