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Posted at 09:50 AM in Personal Chronicles | Permalink
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Have a great holiday man.
The difference between the US and certain European countries is that the US was united through the use of force, whereas people in Benelux and other small nations were united through consensus and common suffering. There has never been a process of reconciliation in the US which has resulted in centuries-old tensions enduring to the present day. Even now there's talk of certain states seceding from the Union - the position of the President isn't respected, and slavery-era attitudes have not gone away. Contrast this with Apartheid South Africa where, after democracy was initiated, efforts were made to build bridges between the oppressors and the oppressed. Without compassion and forgiveness, a nation cannot evolve.
July 26, 2015 at 02:58 PM
Thanks, Ulysses. We leave Tuesday morning upon which I will be my daughters' concierge.
You make good points. It's appalling how many Americans defend Jim Crow attitudes.
Ulysses, do you recommend any good books on the topic of the issues you've raised in your comments? That HBO special really disturbed me.
July 26, 2015 at 03:37 PM
Jeff, enjoy your vacation!
July 26, 2015 at 08:41 PM
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July 26, 2015 at 08:51 PM
July 26, 2015 at 09:08 PM
Paul, that is a great article. I'm glad she has a book about it as well. Both my wife and I will probably read the book. Often, one doesn't know one lives in a sick culture until one compares the culture to a healthier one. That's why I was so blown away by the HBO Real Sports: I took for granted that people were mean to each other, but I was wrong. It doesn't have to be that way.
July 26, 2015 at 09:13 PM
I believe the position of the President---the office---is respected. But certain Presidents themselves are not respected. But the President of the U.S. isn't a dictator----there's a lot of room for debate, criticism, discourse. That's how it's always been and in any society I live in, that's how I hope it will always remain. Going along with a "leader" and no questions asked----no "disrespect" allowed to be shown----sounds like a tyranny.
July 27, 2015 at 05:08 AM
I was referring to death threats, bomb threats, threats to murder the President's children etc. If all you can envisage as an alternative to that is "tyranny" then it seems like rather an irrational position to take.
July 27, 2015 at 06:38 AM
I know someone who worked for the Secret Service, who said that every President in modern history has had most or all of what you're describing. That said, I agree with you that all of that is wrong---but it is also a very tiny minority of crazy people who would do that. And by the way, making threats to the President is punishable by prison. When I read "the position of the President isn't respected" I thought that was referring to not challenging their policies and views----didn't think it was about making threats to them and their families. An interesting article from 1994----RE South Africa in the aftermath of Apartheid. http://www.newrepublic.com/article/120502/violence-south-africa-after-end-apartheid
July 27, 2015 at 11:19 AM
Dixie Chicks effectively had their career ended because they said one mildly disparaging remark about GWB. After 9-11 any one who dared to questions Bush's policies were looked upon as traitors or worse.
July 27, 2015 at 03:13 PM
Ed: The government had nothing to do with radio station program directors and/or fans taking issue with the Dixie Chicks comments. They had every right to speak their mind under the first amendment----but like anyone else who says something controversial, others have their own right to react to it. Try being an actor or actress and being outspoken against the left----it won't help your career.
July 27, 2015 at 03:34 PM
Seems like trashing the left has certainly helped Ted Nugent'S career, Angelo. Tell me the names of people who have had careers ruined by criticizing the left? Clint Eastwood? Not hardly!
July 28, 2015 at 10:44 AM
Angie Harmon for one. But Ed, you're missing the point: They're afraid to speak out in most cases. Clint Eastwood is too old to care----isn't worried about his career at this point. You can count Hollywood conservatives who have actually commented about politics on one hand----Bruce Willis comes to mind----and their comments are usually very measured, so as not to offend.
July 28, 2015 at 07:28 PM
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