I was watching yesterday’s Rachel Maddow Show and she ended on a segment about perspective.
Personally, perspective is awesome from a writer and reader standpoint. Stories from a different perspective than your own help you gain understanding about other people and the world around you. If a rich kid picks up a book about an inner city kid or a farm kid, he would gain understanding about their lives and how they differ from his.
I love trying to see the world in different lenses to try to gain understanding. Yet, I must admit that there are perspectives that my mind seems to reject.
Rachel, in her awesome nerdiness, used pilots and airplanes to introduce the segment. She explained that in World War II, there were pilots who didn’t know they were flying upside down without the horizon to guide them. Sometimes, if they flew into fog, they would come out flying upside down and not know it. That’s why we put instruments in planes to help guide pilots.
She likened the upside down phenomenon to the Tea Party. When they say crazy things (the default isn’t economic apocalypse, Obama’s from Kenya, or this country was founded on Christian values), they really believe it. That’s how they’re able to have a following. Those people believe everything the Tea Party tells them. They’re flying upside down. In their minds, they’re flying correctly.
While in the real world, we see them as insane people who are killing our nation for archaic ideologies. I work with people that share some of their mentality.
When the government shutdown began and the breadwinner of the family received the call not to go into work, I freaked out as I drove to work that morning. It was terrifying to me that our financial flow was suddenly reduced to my incredibly small paycheck.
I’ve built a daily routine. When I walk into the building, I take a certain route to say hi to certain people before going to my assigned position. The first person I saw that morning had to witness my unfortunate mini-breakdown. (I knew the world wasn’t ending, but I was releasing frustration that our government would actually shutdown due to the negligence of our leaders.)
While she listened to my frustration, she lent me a sympathetic ear. Then I reached the silver lining of my cloud: I could finally sign up for affordable health insurance. Starting January 1, 2014, I’ll be able to walk into my doctor’s office to finally figure out what’s going on with my digestive system.
She said that the Affordable Care Act was the worst thing that could happen to this country. Then continued to spout off many false Fox News, Tea Party lies. Sure the Affordable Care Act isn’t perfect.
There are loopholes that need to be closed. A family of four could pay ridiculous premiums under employer insurance. Employers are to provide their employees with affordable insurance, but the law doesn’t address providing affordable insurance for their dependents. Stuff like that will take time to find and fix. Don’t spout lies about death panels to me and expect me to see your point.
While I like to say I’m a person that sees all sides in an argument, the Tea Party mentality is where my brain draws the line. I literally stopped all nonessential thought processes to figure a way out of her diatribe. It was a messy situation. I like her as a person, but we obviously can’t speak to each other about politics.
There are a few perspectives that my mind literally rejects, where my brain halts all thought processes and throws up a warning sign to run. I told her that I had to get to work, ran out of the room, and didn’t bring it up again.
Tea Partiers were elected by their constituents, people who obviously share the same view as the Tea Party mentality. It’s a scary thought that there are more than a few people in our country who think like this. Compared to the American population, they’re only a handful, but they’re enough to bring our government to a halt.
What angers me more is that they don’t even try to adopt another perspective. They have an it’s my way or the highway mentality that I loath. Pilots use instruments to keep them from flying upside down. Tea Partiers already believe that the Affordable Care Act gives the government leave to install chips into the minds of Americans. Maybe we should install a chip in the heads of Tea Partiers to keep them from their own religiously driven stupidity.