Thursday, September 3, 2009

Confounded by the Lack of Reason: Maybe Everyone Shouldn't Be Allowed to Participate in the Democratic Process

I do believe in Rick Roberts, Sean Hannity, and yes for Michael Savage. They educated me. I was very ignorant. –protester in clip above

Take a look at the above clip. Take a good look. These are your countrymen. These are my countrymen. And nothing that comes out of their mouths is founded in truth; most of what comes out of their mouths doesn’t even make sense. Some of what comes out of their mouths is not even coherent. This is perhaps the absolute craziest thing I’ve ever witnessed. They have no idea what they are talking about, and I have the sneaking suspicion that they don’t either.

I consider myself first and foremost a man of reason. And as Fanon once wrote, nothing confounds a man of reason more than unreason. What we are witnessing is an alarmingly high level of unreason.

I would not be so alarmed and I would not be so dismayed if the arguments challenging healthcare were well thought out, well-reasoned arguments. In fact, I would welcome such arguments because I realize that what would emerge from a well-reasoned debate on the part of all parties involved would be a well thought out, well crafted piece of legislation.

However, when one side does not argue in good faith, when one side argues not from a place of reason, when one side chooses to posit lies and startling allegations instead of reasoned discourse and legitimate objections, then we are all in trouble. We are all in danger. It makes me wonder if everyone should really have access to the democratic process.

One of the most contentious issues the framers of the Constitution debated was that of universal suffrage. A portion of the framers insisted that everyone could not handle suffrage. Everyone could not handle participating in the democratic process.

They argued that those lacking education or a certain level of reason, those who did not own property, those who were beholden to others or owned by others should not be given the right to vote because they would be too easily swayed or influenced by others with dubious aims and the means and intellect to exert undue influence on the process.

Of course the framers position was informed by a worldview that devalued women and people of color, but you have to admit after watching the above video that they may have had a point in some respects. If you are buying the BS the right is selling, perhaps you don’t have the requisite capacity of reason and should be shut out of the democratic process altogether. If you really and truly believe that the president is not an American citizen, if you truly believe we are headed toward Socialism, if you really and truly believe that death squads will decide the fate of our elderly, then perhaps you are too far gone to be of any use to anyone.

In closing, I read an interview today in which a lady expressed hopes that Sarah Palin would return to politics. She cited Palin’s depth of intellect as the chief reason she looked forward to Palin’s reemergence. Anytime you look up to Palin’s intellect… Well, I’ll just leave well enough alone and stop there.

7 comments:

SkeptikOne said...

Like it or not, these rantings are the price we pay as a people for free speech...there is no codicile or requirement mandating that what comes out of your mouth make sense.

Used to be that sounding stupid and ignorant in public was an embarrassment to your and your family and your neighbors...now it seems to be a badge of honor among some people..

The right has stolen the microphone...it is time for us to snatch it back...

md20737 said...

I find conversations I have with people about politics never end in potential soultions or agreeing to disagree. The converstaions usually end because one party in the converstation stops thinking and starts feeling. Once emotions get involved all the reason and ration goes out the window. I think thats what happens when the law makers have these converstations and try to persuade or disuade their peers of the impending disaster with health care.

I have decided if the person I am speaking with can not tell me what a DEDUCTIBLE, OUT OF POCKET, OR PREMIUM is I will not engage with them on health care issues because they dont have the fundamentals of basic health care insurance and can not fully understand the financial impact the current system has on the average person. I have to do this because the propaganda on tv has most peoples mind made up. So if you have no facts or have done no research of your own, I protect my sanity by not engagin.

Kristen said...

It's a tough one, because while I believe in our democratic process and freedom of speech, it really does seem like the masses are asses. The rage and fear that some of these people feel over healthcare is beyond reason. An IQ test for voting, perhaps? Sheesh.

Monica Roberts said...

Kristen, I'm very squeamish about any call for IQ tests for voting.

'Literacy tests' were one of the tools used by segregationists to keep African Americans from voting.

Max,
I definitely feel the frustration I pine for the days of reasoned debate that used to take place in political circles but now resemble a WWE wrestling match.

As long as Faux News endures and Rupert Murdoch is willing to lose millions keeping it on the air, we'll continue to have problems with logic and reason in this country.

Kristen {RAGE against the MINIVAN} said...

Monica, I was not thinking of that historical context in my joking, and you are right to be squeamish. My bad. I was just feeling frustrated by the igorance and vitriol being spewed by the right-wingers who seem to be lacking basic skills of logic right now.

Monica Roberts said...

Kristen,
I feel your frustration about that.

Our best defense against the ignorant is for progressive people to get to work and outfight them.

We have to work harder than our ignorant opponents and fight for our agenda .

Q said...

This is REALLY WILD!

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