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Fear and Ignorance 2, Love and Intelligence 0

June 26, 2016

edward-albert-actor-quote-fear-is-the-only-true-enemy-born-ofTwo major events have occurred over the past few weeks that have one thing in common – both were fueled by fear and ignorance. Misinformation overcame facts, fear overcame concern for one’s fellow human being. The first event was Donald Trump’s rise to being the Republican nominee for President of the United States. (Just typing that sentence caused the hair on my neck to stand). The second event was Britain voting to separate from the EU by 52 to 48 per cent .

The fear of immigrants, especially Muslims, was a primary factor in both of these decisions. Mr. “Build a Wall”, based a large part of his campaign on promoting the idea that America is under siege and we need to essentially close our borders. The pro “Brexit” proponents used the fear of refugees to convince many to vote for separation. This statement as to why some Brits voted to leave the EU could as easily apply to why some supported Trump’s rhetoric about our immigrants – “They played up fears of ISIS attacks, of over-burdened schools and hospitals, of moms, dads, brothers, sisters, children, and grandchildren forced to miss out on their rightful and paid-for state support, edged out by newly arrived migrants hungry for handouts and everything for free.”(CNN)  The truth of how both countries benefit from immigrants was lost. It is almost laughable in the U.S. to hear immigrants denigrated when all of us, unless you are Native American, are immigrants.

Trump touts the slogan, “Make America Great Again”, while the pro Brexit side shouted “Bring back the Britain of our memories”. Both of these sound good, but what do they even mean? Trump’s verbiage makes it sound as if we are not great. Au contraire, Sir Donald. Currently we have the lowest uninsured rate for health care ever recorded, an unemployment rate below five percent, and the longest streak of private-sector job growth on record, all while cutting the deficit by two-thirds. We have the best military in the world, the strongest economy, and one of the most diverse populations. Oh, maybe that last one is the reason for the cry from Trumpites and Brexitites.

Blaming others for your problems is easy. Tossing out labels to dehumanize people is easy. Spouting bumper sticker slogans is easy. Creating fear with ignorance is easy. Taking the time to find the truth, caring for your neighbor, respecting one another, listening to all sides, being willing to stand together as human beings — all take love and intelligence.

So far, fear and ignorance leads love and intelligence 2 – 0, let’s just hope the game isn’t over.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Deborah Trusty permalink
    June 26, 2016 1:16 pm

    Truth brother.

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