For the last several weeks, I’ve been dangerously close to making political posts on social media. Although I actually don’t mean for them to be political, my online friends might think I’ve taken to “Facebook ranting”. I truly hope this is not the case. Because here’s the truth: just because I am addressing a “political” issue doesn’t mean I’m trying to make a “political” point. Both left and right have their talking points, and plenty of commentators to convince you. But I’m attempting to do exactly the opposite of speaking politics. Let me explain.
Just because I am addressing a “political” issue doesn’t mean I’m trying to make a “political” point.
Here are four issues I’ve touched on recently that are normally considered political:
- Joe Biden and his sexual assault allegations
- The tragic shooting of Ahmaud Arbery
- “Fake News” and Donald Trump
- Social Justice in America
All four seem political at first, right? But try to forget the politics for a minute. Would you agree that all four of these talking points deal with fairness? Take a second and think about it. All four issues above could be boiled down to individual Americans (human beings) getting treated fairly or not. Politics aside, as Americans, we all still believe in the right of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, don’t we? We still believe in fair treatment under the law for every person, rich, poor, black, white, Republican, Democrat, and that these rights are afforded to us by our Creator, right?
So to me, fairness is not a political issue, it’s a human issue. In fact, I would argue that true “politics” is not interested, first and foremost, with fairness and equal treatment. No, politics is more interested in “Who’s on my side?”. I’ll take it a step further, politics and it’s ugly cousin partisanship are the farthest thing away from fairness.
Politics and it’s ugly cousin partisanship are the farthest thing away from fairness.
Let’s look at each issue…
Joe Biden vs. Tara Reade
If Joe Biden is on my side of the political aisle, then I am for him. I believe him and quickly dismiss Tara Reade’s allegation, or any other credible allegation. But if Mr. Biden is not on my side, then he is guilty. The media is kinda “getting it right” on this one and Tara Reade is telling the truth. You see, I don’t seek facts, I seek my own agenda. I really don’t care about the facts unless they bring me to the conclusion I want politically.
Unfortunately for Joe, he himself seems to have fell into this political trap (which makes sense since he is a politician). It would seem he pretty much condemned himself. During the Kavanaugh allegations, Mr. Biden said that a women alleger should be believed the minute she makes the allegation public, because she was at least telling “the essence” of the truth to speak out like that.
But here’s the thing: even if Mr. Biden was unfair to others (or at best, he was careless with his words) I don’t believe we should strip him of his rights. I still believe in “innocent until proven guilty” and Mr. Biden deserves to be treated fairly. I also believe that Tara Reade needs to be treated fairly, and that her allegations need to be investigated fairly. I want truth. I want justice.
From everything I have read and seen so far, I cannot fathom how a person can defend the actions of the two men who killed this young man. As of writing this, I’m still trying to gather all the facts, trying to uncover the truth, and hoping the FBI, or some unbiased investigators, will get involved and help us get answers.
But if you’re having a knee-jerk reaction to blindly defend the actions of these two men or find fault in the victim, then politics may be at work. If you would rather spit out your opinion online, then seek the truth, you may be partisan. You may need some soul-searching. Could it be that a political spirit has compromised your humanity?
I pray for this nation. Slavery and later legalized prejudice has left its nasty residue in this “land of free”. We, as Americans, need to expose any facet of it. And we can’t let a spirit of politics cause us to sugar coat this bitter, vile attitude that brings about mistreatment towards the marginalized.
“Fake News” and Donald Trump
I really don’t want to tackle the whole “fake news” thing here. But I need to say this: I don’t care if Mr. Trump does things I disagree with, I still want the man to treated fairly. Did you hear that? Yes. I said it. Just like Joe Biden, I want Trump to be treated fairly. I want all people to be treated fairly.
No, I don’t like Trump’s name-calling. No, I don’t like his Twitter rants. But I also do not like “retaliation journalism” from the press. You may think it’s okay. But I am telling you, the ends do not justify the means. We should never ever use the free press as a weapon. It’s dangerous. So I have a massive problem with journalists, especially ones who claim to be objective journalists, thinking themselves some sort of activist to bring down the President of the United States. That’s politics… Trump is not on your side, so you want to take him down. That’s not objective journalism. It’s raw and unbridled partisanship.
Mr. Trump is childish at times and engages in name-calling and Twitter rants. You can report on that. Those are facts. If you’re an opinion journalist (and you make that known to your viewers!), then you can say, “It’s my opinion that this behavior is not a quality that is good for the President of the United States. I know Mr. Trump won the election. I know Mr. Trump may do good things for the economy, but I am telling you that this childish behavior is not good for the fabric of our country.”
But no, these journalists obviously don’t think that is enough, so they air their own opinions like they are reporting facts. They make wild assumptions. They invent fake and unfair narratives. They ask ridiculous questions at press briefings. They quote bogus sources in their hit pieces. Of course, they’re trained journalists, so they do all this propaganda artfully. But any simple person not consumed with hatred for the Orange Man can see the difference between facts and their constant, wild speculation.
Do you want to see the political spirit? Look at a biased TV journalist straining to make that “I’m so pious I’m about to cry” face looking into the camera feigning “I’m just reporting the facts about evil Mr. Trump”… Politics. Partisanship. Hypocrites. Falsehood, lies.
Again, reporting on President Trump’s outrageous habit of Twitter ranting is valid. Or the fact that Mr. Trump seems to have a very low view of anybody that disagrees with him (I call it “Trump-supremist”). But making people believe, as an absolute fact, “Trump is a racist”, “Trump colluded with the Russians”, “Trump told us to drink Lysol” these statements are speculation and not facts. Only someone biased, filled with a political spirit, would accept these things as “facts”.
“I can’t believe you brought up Trump. Are you defending him?”
Here is why I’ve ended my article with Trump: I think the idea of “Trump” in this country is a prime example of the political spirit at work. You can’t invoke the man’s name without a political response from people. And I get it, to a degree. Mr. Trump very possibly brought this on himself, with his polarizing and brash tactics. Could be. I don’t have the answer on why the response is there. But I know this. It’s there. And I know something else. It’s dangerous. Because biased treatment towards one is biased treatment towards all. You think it’s okay to assault someone you’ve labeled a “Nazi” without a fair trial?
Biased treatment towards one is biased treatment towards all.
You think it’s okay to degrade, mock, or even depict violence towards Trump or his supporters because you feel justified in doing so? You may say, “Well, Trump started it!”. But if you retaliate with the same foolishness and anger, what makes you think anyone should listen to you, hypocrite? Are you okay with stripping a person of their rights because you don’t like them? Because you don’t agree with them? Because they don’t have the same skin color you do? This may fare well with you for awhile. But soon enough you’ll find yourself on the wrong side of this mistreatment. Like Joe Biden’s situation. Remember? It was okay for Mr. Biden to say Kavanaugh shouldn’t be treated fairly, but then not so okay when that same injustice came knocking on his door.
So, what am I saying? Be true. Don’t get swept up in this partisan culture. Seek justice. Seek the truth and be reasonable. Show compassion. Humble yourself.
P.S. Trying to do these things, you may end up like me… realizing a deep brokenness on the inside that needs something or Someone bigger. If that is you, I would invite you to simply look up with me. Look up, and with a pure heart, ask God to reveal Himself to you. I believe He will. He did for me.