I rarely talk politics, mainly because I am not much of a political person. I’ve been registered independent most of my life because I am not comfortable being associated with any one point of view that a political party might represent. It’s just too…too political!
Last night I had to sit in my car and wait an hour to pick up my granddaughter at work. I made the big mistake of turning on the radio and instead of listening to my usual music stations, I wound up on talk radio. The media are currently having a feeding frenzy on the unfortunate situation in Baltimore. I dislike most talk show hosts on the radio because so many of them are radically one-sided in their mindset. Rush Limbaugh is the best example. It is scary to know this man has such a huge following and yet he is so opinionated in one direction that it’s just not humanly normal.
Yesterday, for example, Limbaugh was implying that President Obama was behind a conspiracy that was actually responsible for the riots in Baltimore. In fact, anytime something has gone wrong in this country it is the fault of the President and/or the Democrats, so says Rush. I daresay if the President came upon a drowning Rush Limbaugh and heroically save his life, Rush would not thank him. No, Rush would more than likely blame the President for putting him in the life-threatening circumstance to begin with.
The situation in Baltimore is an example of how divisive our culture remains. As a people we are still poor listeners. When there are two or more sides to an issue those sides have a tendency to hunker down and make themselves unmovable. It makes no difference if there are good and bad points represented by the sides. There is no tolerance for compromise because compromise represents a loss.
Our country—both its government and its citizens—have lost their way. They are so concerned about “winning” that they refuse even accepting a tie. Our preoccupation with winning, I think, has spilled over from all the sports we follow and the humongous amounts of money and time we devote to that industry. I would go so far as to say that sports is so out of control in America, that it permeates every part of our culture these days and has fostered an attitude that failure and losing are not tolerated. As a result, many of us have no tolerance for losing. In this kind of atmosphere, compromise is next to impossible.
I’m more of a win some/lose some kind of person. It’s okay with me if I do not win all the time. In fact, some of the best moments in my life were when I lost. I did not necessarily think that at the time but, importantly, I learned from those loses. I became a better person and a lot better at things I did. I think everybody should lose every now and then…or at least not win. It builds character and fosters a certain level of humility. But more importantly, it maintains a good balance and perspective.
Think about it. On May 2nd millions of people in this country will spend millions to watch two boxers being paid record-setting millions of dollars to physically beat the crap out of each other. Imagine spending this kind of money to help those in our country who need to learn ways that will help them rise up out of poverty. Someone like me would wish for a miracle scenario in this boxing match. Here’s how it would play out: The two men battle fiercely until the final round. That gets everyone super-hyped and the heavy betters tearing their hair out. Then, within seconds of the bell sounding in the final round, both boxers simultaneously land a knock-out punch on the other. Both go down for a ten-count. Nobody wins…just like in Baltimore.