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the impasse

(if you think this post is about you, then it probably is. and there are several of you)

As the minutes tick away on the war clock, the great divide grows wider and more dangerous.

Where once there was at least a level field between us and them, there is now a steep valley strewn with shards of glass and sharp, pointed rocks.

It is now impossible to pass.

We stand on our cliffs and look over at the other side. Where once we saw friends that we could at least meet in the middle to talk about the things that did not divide us, we now see strangers who claim to know us, but don't.
Yes, it is an us and them situation. The shades of gray disappeared some time in the past 24 hours, as the yelling between the sides grew louder and we started waging a little war of our own.

I've already seen my first casualties of this mini-war and my friendships lie on the battlefield, wounded and writhing and so close to death you can hear the rattling of their souls trying to get out.

I've been here before and in those times, I ran to rescue those who perceived me as the enemy. I tried to breathe life into those dying friendships, I tried drag complete strangers away from the light and back towards life. I did this publicly, I did it privately. I did it for people with whom I had once shared my life's secrets and I did it for those who I knew only through a faked email address.

In my previous battles I was an appeaser. I fought with diplomacy. I compromised my own self in order to keep the peace and stave off confrontation. I muzzled myself so as not to offend those who I later realized were nothing more than my enemy, for they refused to think of me as a living, breathing person with a heart and instead treated me like a piece of scrap metal. When I kneeled before them and asked forgiveness though I really didn't need to, they kicked me in the teeth.

Sometimes it is not until after the battle that you find out what your enemy really thinks of you, when they start to throw sticks and stones around with your name on them, hurling insults and harsh words as if they were rocks aimed at your head.

My days of appeasing and diplomacy are gone. I crossed the divide and I am done crawling over broken glass and rocks to try to reach you. It was you who chose to turn that level field between us into a chasm, and it was you who chose to start slinging arrows from the other side when I was willing to meet you halfway.

The bridge has been burned down and I am not rebuilding it.

I could sit here all day and spit out the metaphors and analogies. What it really comes down to is this: I don't care anymore. We've drawn our sides and that's the bottom line. I am not going to mince my words or muzzle my thoughts for fear of hurting your feelings or coming across as too harsh.

I am angry. I have been for 18 months. The anger is not going to go away when I let people scratch the wounds again and again.

This is our impasse. This is our war. You are the enemy because you have made it that way.

War means never having to say you're sorry. So I'm not going to do that any more.

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Comments

All you can do is be true to yourself, to what you believe to be right.

No compromise is possible with the lefty tyrant appeasing bastards anyways.

I saw a friend from high school for the first time in many years the other day. After I mentioned that I've become quite a hawk these days, she made sure not to touch any political subject for the rest of the evening.

It is possible to avoid talking about it, you know.

Don't expect logical and rational behavior from lefties and peaceniks. As soon as they start exhibiting logical thought processes and rational behavior and thinking, they cease to be lefties and peaceniks. Think about it.

You say what you gotta say, and let them howl.

Is this a personal post, or a general one against those who oppose military invasion?

By the way I didn't mean that Michele should should ignore any insult hurtled by a former friend, but rather that a real friend would bite his or her tongue and not make the insult in the first place, no matter what he or she thought.

Jane, this is personal.

I know plenty of anti-war people, yourself included, who I respect, admire and can maintain a decent discussion with.

Reasonable people can disagree. In fact, disagreeing with reasonable people is something I enjoy most. There are few things more stimulating than an intelligent debate about important issues, like war. It's the unreasonable people (on both sides) that I have a problem with. And boy do they like to comment in blogs.

I know this is a sensitive and personal issue for you so I appologize for making light. But, that reminds me of the relationship I had with my brother when we used to fight over what to watch on TV.

You should never apologize for being smart and opinionated, Michele - that's why I read you. Even if we disagree on many things, I have respect for opinions intelligently expressed, and I have never claimed to be an inflexible liberal. Now, many of your knee-jerk, venom-spewing commenters I could take or leave - I feel like they just want to get their shot in and move on. You? I'd do tequila shots with you, that's how much I like your blog.

Good for you Michele. Woohoo.

In any compromise between good and evil, only evil has something to gain. Evil does not apologize for what it is, it attempts to get you to apologize for being good (that's how it wins).

People on 'that' side aren't concerned if they're evil; they care that you're good. They're not interested in being good, they just want you to be evil. It's the leftist irrationalist solution to everything: don't want to be good, then turn everyone evil; can't be prosperous, then make everyone poor; etc. And you can see it implemented in leftist political structures, e.g. under Communism rather than figure out (and implement) the root of prosperity, they decided to just make nearly everyone poor (Socialism attempts the same thing, but to a lesser degree).

The commonality in all of it is: the hatred of values, because they're values; or, the hatred of the good for being good.

Once you appease, they see that they can shake your confidence in your values, and won't let up until they do.

They can talk all they want about the bravery and courage of coming out as gay, or of a particular religion, or any sort of 'oppressed' people. But if you want to see what its really like to be oppressed, come out as a conservative. They will hate you for it and show you no mercy. Kudos to you Michele.

"...lefty tyrant appeasing bastards"? "Don't expect logical and rational behavior from lefties and peaceniks"? You know I missed that 5th law of thermodynamics, the one that says peaceniks are evil-loving idiots.

I agree with Dave and Donna. Intelligent rational people can disagree because they aren't threatened by differences in opinion. WIld animals attack when cornered because they have no other options. People who attack you for your opinion, rather than stick to the issue, are themselves at the limit of their options. It's a weakness on their part. I have a hard time understanding why people are so threatened by dissenting opinions, but it's a never ending struggle. Look at Socrates, the guy was put to death simply for asking too many questions. Effective use of language and ideas is hard. Name calling and attacks are easy. Hang in there and be yourself. People and issues are separate, and most importantly, no one has all the answers, so we needn't give unde weight to those who think they do.

I have had the same passing with some very old friends,and although I have tried to be kind and understanding,with some of them I have to go with Kevin P's sentiment "You can kiss my ass all the way up in the crack."With that said,I salute you Michele and my days are better for having found your site.Thank you.

Michele,

D.C. and I have semi-opposing views on the war thing, and we have actually grown as friends in spite of that.

We know that one can disagree with out resent. We still have a lot in common aside from our war stance. In fact, we are both libertarians. He (as well as you) has his reasons for supporting the war, I have mine for not supporting it. Does this make me an enemy of America? Before you answer that question, ask me. I have withdrawn from the war argument because I am, by nature, a calm person, and have surmised that America is going to do what she has to do, no matter what I say. Ive also withdrawn from the fray because I am tired of lefty-publicity-hungry assholes giving rational people like me the black eye.

Enough of the bullshit. You're allright in my book, whether I agree with you or not.