I finally saw “Civil War,” the umpteen zillionth movie in the unendable Avengers series. It was quite enjoyable but there was one scene in which all the that-would-never-happen-ness came to a point. The bad guy has just explained with utmost clarity and precision how and why he moved heaven and earth to set the Avengers against each other. He knows he could never destroy them so he manipulates them into destroying each other. “See? That’s what I’m doing! I’m playing you!”
To which Tony Stark, of all people says, “Great idea!” and starts wailing on Captain America.
I thought that really took the audience well past suspension of disbelief into delusional territory. You’d have to be crazy to buy in to the premise that the smartest man in any given room would let himself be played.
Then I went to Facebook.
My my. Such crazy! Such eagerness to follow pipers! Such happiness to march over cliffs while flipping off people who suggest you should maybe not march over a cliff! It’s almost as if some unprecedented event had occurred, generating a big wave like an EM pulse that short circuited human brains and made everybody crazy.
You’d think we’d never had an election in this country.
But we have had some elections. I remember one back in… 2008, I think it was. You remember too, right? That time when the country was doomed, DOOMED by the election of Barak Obama? The republic absolutely, positively could not survive four years under an Obama administration. Then the country was doomed all over again in 2012 and, I hate to say it but the political doomsayers told you so. Here it is 2016 with all the churches turned into museums of socialist progress, every Bible safely burned along with every copy of the Constitution and Oceania has always been at war with Eurasia…
Oh, wait. That didn’t happen.
There are many among us who believe that progress was made in positive directions over the last eight years. There are many among us who believe that our country moved way too far in negative directions over the last eight years. No matter what you believe, we still have a country and it still works. The doomsayers were all full of it.
There are many among us who believe that progress will be made in a positive direction over the next four or eight years. There are many among us who believe that our country will move way too far in a negative direction over the next four or eight years. No matter what you believe, we will still have a country and it will still work. The doomsayers are still full of it because doomsayers always are.
President Trump, who I did not support during the campaign, is neither a harbinger of doom nor the savior of the Republic. Conservatives will not gain as much as they hope, liberals will not lose as much as they fear. Sensible people will work with the new president where they can and oppose him when they must. Mr. Trump never claimed to be a doctrinaire conservative. He will certainly propose some measures that will draw the ire of conservatives and advance some aspects of a progressive agenda. Will Democrats work with him to advance the interests of their constituents or will they stick with the scorched earth tribal warfare which is the bread and butter of muck raking talking heads and duckspeakers on all sides?
Will left-wing yahoos continue to make common cause with right-wing yahoos to keep pots boiling over with fear and/or resentment? How long will YOU let these people play you?
If your circle of friends is shrinking because of media-hyped political narratives, you are being played.
If you’re being suckered into placing tribal loyalty above personal relationships, YOU ARE BEING PLAYED.
If you’re jumping at the chance to cut off family members because they’re wrongthinkers, I can’t help you. You may be too far gone. But I can tell you YOU. ARE BEING. PLAYED. The little man who convinced the mighty Avengers to duke it out is laughing at you.
For goodness sake, come up for air! Go outside and play! Go swap recipes with that old friend who Facebook just outed as a jack-booted Nazi or Commie saboteur. Apologize to your wrong-winged mother or politically addle-minded kid. Turn back into a person. Stop being the stock character in the old war movie who endangers the crew of the damaged submarine because he panics. It’ll be okay as long as everybody keeps their wits about them.
Honest, it will.