thinking out loud
Noticing something interesting.
I'm still diving into the sewer of DU, even though the election is over. It's interesting, in a morbid sort of way, to see how these people behave when faced with their loss.
But I am noticing a sort of divide among the inhabitants of DU. There have been some angry, bitter and downright disgusting threads on that site in the past two days, like this one with the poll asking if 9/11 was more depressing than the election (guess which one is winning?) and this one, about a missing preacher whose wife was found decapitated.
Some of the comments are beyond ugly. Lots of laughter at the fate of this family and "the more the merrier" attitude that, because these people were religious, they must be Bush supporters and, well, good riddance to rubbish.
On both these threads, many of the veteran DU posters (those with 1000+ posts) are asking their brethren to stop their messages of hate, or are horrified at what their cohorts are saying.
Those that do talk down the hate and rage are attacked by everyone else. Let the healing begin? Not likely. I think their are wounds within the left that are just beginning to open.
I wonder now what is going to happen to the left. Have a good portion of them had enough of the bitterness and hatefulness? And are a portion of them sliding further towards the edge, revving up the hate? I do wonder if there will be a split of sorts, with some of them going on to work towards something better and the rest left wallowing in their own stink. I further wonder which side will have greater numbers.
Alternately, I wonder what will happen to the right, in the same vein. Will those of us who look for a complete separation of church and state drift apart from those who want to legislate morality and rule with religion in mind? Will the Republicans who support gay rights and a woman's right to choose branch off into their own faction?
I've already seen the fallout starting, with people questioning my (and others) dedication to the Republican party because I'm not swallowing the pill whole. Politics is not an all or nothing proposition. I'm a some from column A, some from column B kind of person. The fact that I'm an atheist with socially liberal tendencies is clearly giving some people pause for concern, as if I am going to now become a detriment to the party. They got what they wanted from me - in my vote - and now they can discard me because I won't follow the fold all the way down the line.
Four days ago, all of my negative email came from folks on the left. Interesting now that Bus has won, some people from my own party are taking the liberty to email me or leave comments telling me that if I don't follow their lead towards what they consider a moral mandate, I am worth nothing to them.
We need to be careful of the direction our party will now take. Alienation of those who did not vote with moral values as their core belief will only serve to break the party in half. We won the election. If we start off by swinging swords at the necks of those who oppose the idea of church and state , we will only spite ourselves in the end. We need to find ways to work together, not ways to make a victory a weapon of divisiveness.
Honestly, I don't believe that we are moving towards some sort of religious dictatorship. I'm quite confident that in the next four years, I will not be given chance to doubt my vote for the president. But it still wouldn't hurt for a dialogue to begin between those of us on the left and on the right who don't tend towards the edges of our respective parties. We also need to figure out how we can become cohesive units within our own party rather than a disoraganized swarm of attack dogs. It's for the good of our country's future that we all learn how talk to our own without talking down or further breaking down the political dialogue amongst ourselves. We're gloating about the meltdown of the left, but from what I see personally, we're heading towards a minor meltdown ourselves that, if left unchecked, will be the demise of us in 2008.
Just some stream of conscious thoughts for a Saturday morning, unedited, not proofread and suffering from the writer's lack of caffeine.
Update: Whoa, chill out, people. I'm not in any way saying that I suddenly think DU is a place of moderation and tolerance. I was just wondering if there are more than a few veterans of that place who have had enough.