Matt Shepard Goes To Tehran...
October 26, 2007
John Edwards finally got something right. There really are Two Americas. And
the gap between them is widening at an alarming rate. To view this divide, one need
only tune in to the mainstream media.
Topping the news these days are news stories covering such earth-shattering events
as who offended whom, who needs to apologise, whose feeling have been hurt, followed
by several 'he said, she said' controversies. After a commercial break, we get the
latest 'I'm Outraged' sound-bite followed by the latest 'crisis' report, usually
coupled with a demand for more 'investments' (that's liberal speak for 'taxes'),
couched in moral imperatives.
Break to commercial. Forget going to the fridge, you might miss the latest cutting
edge commercials, cleverly appealing to your wallet via your crotch. A few teen tramps
with botoxed lips and pierced navels selling, well, who cares....
Back to breaking news. Half of America stays glued to their seats in hopes of say,
a chance to see the latest 'gotcha!' or, better yet, a glimpse of Brittany's vagina.
Then, on to the latest nobody who lucked into his 15 minutes of fame via some usually dangerous,
mostly degrading act. Fame is the name of the game. And fully half of America is
The other half of America is usually busy working, raising kids, going to church,
paying taxes...that kind of stuff. They pretty much realize that the self-anointed
'elites' that still control the media don't like them very much. They don't much
care. They just tune out. Click.
The first half of America has taken a very dim view of this second half. Referring
to them as rubes in flyover country, they're dismissed as 'just not with it.' They
haven't figured out yet that God is out and Mother Earth is in. They haven't caught
on yet that it's mucho fun being able to define your own 'truths'. Joe Six-Pack
is still talking facts, and how stupid is that when it's feelings that really matter?
You'd think they'd never heard of 'empowerment.' What can one do with people like
Meanwhile, the second half of America, the half responsible for trivial stuff like
paying most of the tax burden so the first half can indulge their rights, continues to lead their boring lives. They volunteer their time and money
on a local level, in hopes of helping others. Totally unaware of the fact that,
these days they can get the same moral points by merely taking a stand against the latest cause du jour
and demanding the government do something about it.
The 2nd half of America is so behind the times that they still believe God is responsible
for hurricanes and fires and droughts and pestilence. They haven't caught on to
the fact that since all problems are caused by man (specifically, Americans) they
can be solved by man. At least on paper. And with the proper amount of 'investment'.
Half of America has figured out an answer to the age-old problems of sin and guilt,
right and wrong. Sin has been re-defined and guilt can now be expiated by the purchase
of carbon credits. Right and wrong have been re-defined as whatever is
legal and/or has a 'consensus'. As long as one's intentions are good, the outcome doesn't matter.
The other half of America knows better. They know that just saying something is
so, doesn't make it so. They know that doing the right thing, even when no one is
watching, is just, well, the right thing to do.
Fully half of America, usually college graduates, celebrities and the wealthy, believe
capitalism is evil and profit is a dirty word. They believe world peace is possible
through dialogue and reality is optional. Intentions trump outcomes and anyone who
doesn't agree with them is either racist, homophobic, mean-spirited and/or just
downright stupid. Case closed.
The other half of America is comprised of the capitalists, the worker bees, the
small business owners whose efforts are directly responsible for the miracle that
is America. They know America is the engine that feeds the world and serves as a
beacon of hope to millions. This half of America know that honor, duty and country
are ideals worth fighting for. Not outdated concepts to be exploited.
It remains to be seen which vision of America will prevail. I'm putting my money
on the side that acknowledges both God and reality. The side that knows that things
sometimes happens and life goes on.
I'm betting that the other half of America, the half that insists reality conform
to man's expectations, will eventually discover that the utopia they envision is
largely a delusion. A delusion made possible by the God-fearing, hardworking, tax-paying,
unwashed masses they have such contempt for.
I only hope that in the meantime, democracy won't end up being the death of itself.
She lives in South Carolina