But I just can’t seem to erase those messages without first listening to what sort of crap I’m being told this time—it’s as if I want to validate my anger or something.
Back when I studied writing, we just talked about statements being true or not, but my son Jackson is always talking about logical fallacies this, logical fallacies that. Oh my gosh, are the people who write these advertisements the evil geniuses of logical fallacies, are they just that stupid, or have they sold their souls just to earn money?
Speaking of money—I just can’t stand to note how much money must be being spent on flyers, phone scripts, and television ads these days during elections—which would be at least a little less painful if advertisements shared factual statements such as voting records and gave us context for what candidates have said or what they have done. What if someone were just willing to donate that kind of money toward solving some of this world’s problems? But, no, much of the donated money is just being used to twist words and take those words and any actions out of context.
A favorite of mine: “Did you know that so-and-so voted to take away money from senior citizens, veterans, soldiers, students, children, dying people, highways, orange people, etc.?” Then this is quickly followed by how we all need to live within our means and so-and-so is busy spending your money—but apparently spending it on the green people or whoever doesn’t matter as much to the caller. At the same time, no context is given explaining how much total had to be cut from the budget, how many other officials voted the same way, or any mitigating circumstances that could explain the record. The old “that person is doing a bad job but if I were in that position I would never cut money for the orange people—no matter what” regardless of any circumstances that might change the perspective is an insult to my intelligence about the complexities surrounding decision-making.
And how about the assumption that anyone registered in a party votes party line? Sorry but being told to be a good party person and vote as expected—and that all your other party members have already voted and you better vote soon to make certain that other party does not win—is an insult to my ability to think for myself. As if there could be no validity to candidates from the other side or to issues supported by “those guys”—who are not like us, right? This is an especially questionable technique in a famously purple state such as ours.
Here’s another favorite: while you’re at it, don’t forget to insult my values and call me anti-whatever if I don’t agree with you about how a person in a certain group should vote—in other words, you=values-based and me=lack-of-values-based. Because, really, why would I look to values in my decision-making—I can’t have any if I disagree with you, right?
OK, OK, it’s time to stop this diatribe before another call comes in to provide me with another example of why I don’t answer my phone these days. And time to try to remember what might be right about the election process in this country.
Yes, despite all my anger and frustration over what is wrong with our elections these days, I am grateful I get to vote and that I really do trust that my ballot will be counted.
Though all these people can try to buy our votes with all that advertising, we are still free not to answer their calls and free to vote as we choose.