And A Child Shall Lead. Be Afraid.

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Every so often, an idea will come to a person and it shapes his or her life forever. This is how great inventions, philosophies, and new types of porn get developed. But sometimes the idea leads to darker discoveries, such as cults, violent revolution, and new types of porn.

I had one of these ideas recently, and it doesn’t bode well for the world. The current political landscape is more tattered than pair of cutoffs in a CAT 5 hurricane near a knife factory. People are sniping at each other online and attacking each other in public over differences of opinion. Any middle ground is most likely found at the bottom of a deep chasm between the two sides of an argument.

I got into an online discussion (and by discussion I mean one-sided shouting match with yours truly being the recipient) about Megan Rapinoe and her letting the American flag fall to the ground. I stated my objection to Ms. Rapinoe on this basis and Leftists on the thread thought I was advocating kicking a puppy for fun and profit. Through use of logical fallacies, projecting what they thought I was saying and what my ideological bent was, and a combination of public shaming, vulgarity, and insults, I eventually gave up trying to use reason because it didn’t work the first few times I tried it while correcting and pointing out their logical and factual errors.

Then, it occurred to me the chasm between the Leftists on the thread and me had nothing to do with Left vs. Right, Democrat vs. Republican, Liberals vs. Conservatives, or even Right vs. Wrong. It’s turned into children vs. adults.

The news is full of stories that bear out this observation. Take the recent controversy over Erica Thomas, a Georgia State representative who got chewed out at a Publix grocery store for taking 15 items into the 10 Items or Less lane. (Yes, grammar fans, I know it should be 10 Items or Fewer, but work with me here.) Afterwards, Thomas went to Twitter (the home of online twits) and accused the man who called her out on her lack of grocery etiquette of being racist. She would have gotten away with it, too, if it hadn’t been for those pesky kids…or the guy who Thomas called a racist appearing at a press conference Thomas called to talk about the incident. Since then, Thomas has backtracked, doubled down on her original statements, got the police involved, and watched as her public status took a nosedive faster than a Eric Swalwell’s Presidential hopes.

Now, we can debate the importance of what prompted the verbal altercation until the cows come home, but the larger point is Thomas felt she could get away with it because of who she is. And hopefully soon who she was after she resigns by choice or by demand.

What does this have to do with children vs. adults exactly? Maturity. As immature as it is to verbally accost someone in a supermarket over the number of items in a cart or basket, it’s just as immature to assume you have the authority to do it because you want to do it. Children are some of the most ego-centric people in society (second only to Congresscritters). Everything they do is designed to advance their own self-interest, and when they are denied what they want, their natural instinct is to get emotional and/or make excuses for their behavior.

Remind you of anyone you know, Ms. Thomas?

If this were an isolated incident, we might be okay, but it’s not. If you look around at the stories big and small, I’ll bet you can find more than a few instances of the adults vs. children mindset. Prepubescent drag queens, the Fight for $15 movement, Antifa and its media supporters, Megan Rapinoe and the American flag, Colin Kaepernick and the Betsy Ross Nikes, boycotts of conservative (or seemingly conservative) businesses for not towing the Leftist line, deplatforming speakers, doxing known opponents to Leftist causes, people confronting conservative members of Congress and the Trump Administration, and many, many more, all of which boils down to adults vs. children.

So, how do we fix this? I’m not sure we can anymore. We may have passed the point of no return, thus guaranteeing this is a one-way trip. The best advice I can give is to act like adults, regardless of where you fall on the ideological spectrum, because the appeal of being free from responsibility while maintaining an unwavering belief that our word and feelings are law is very strong. Like the Leftists in the online discussion about Megan Rapinoe, the children need to gang up on you so you relent, but that doesn’t mean you have to, especially when it’s something that is clearly wrong. No matter how often they badger you or tell you that you’re wrong, know that they are trying to appeal to your need to be part of a group, to be accepted. Trust me, being accepted into some groups is worse than being alone.

In the meantime, we have to be careful because we’re not dealing with rational, mature people most of the time. We are dealing with people whose entire worldviews are predicated on the notion that all men and women are created equally inferior to them, and they will get nasty. They need you to take the bait so they can drag you down to their level where they have the home field advantage. But not every battle needs to be waged online, in public, or in private. Just know the children are running the asylum right now, so we need to be careful. There is a reason so many Leftists were shocked at the 2016 Presidential election, and it’s because there were a lot of Trump supporters who silently listened to the rhetoric and decided to pull the lever for Donald Trump. And with the Left acting more and more childish by the day, 2020 is starting to shape up to be another pity party for the Left.

Author: Thomas

I'm a small town boy living in the heart of Iowa watching the world go by with my wife and dog.