Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Voter Anger

We are not punished for our mistakes, but by them. We are not punished for our mistakes, but by them.

This is so true for me! I find I am angriest with others and more prone to blame and want to punish, when I’m angry or disappointed with myself. When I’ve fucked up and done something dumb and stupid, something I knew better than to do, something I should not have done, I look around for something or someone else to blame: it’s my boss’ fault; I’m too, busy, there’s not enough time; my spouse didn’t do what s/he was supposed to do. Anything but pause, reflect and take responsibility.

When I take responsibility, I take control, and with control I might see what I did as a mistake, not a sin, then do what’s necessary to avoid making that same mistake twice. But if I’m a victim of the situation or others, with no control, and what I did was a sin, not a mistake, and a sin must be punished, sometimes severely, then what went wrong and didn’t work, will happen again, and again, and again.

We are not punished for our mistakes, but by them. Means there’s no sin involved, but only a mistake; and that mistake can be seen as feedback, as neutral, non-judgmental information that I can use to correct the mistake. ‘Punishment’ is really not the best word, but it works to get attention. From the ego’s perspective it feels like punishment, not feedback. But if I can shift to spirit’s perspective, I can see it as a learning experience, an opportunity to learn to take responsibility and stop blaming.

Catching myself being angry with others and more prone to blame and want to punish, when I’m angry or disappointed with myself, is part of the learning. If I don’t become aware of what’s going on inside me and resolve to take responsibility for it and change it, my behavior becomes more and more irrational, harmful and destructive, until the mistake does become a sin, and I really screw up so badly that it’s clear there’s no one to blame but me.
I see this anger at self, blaming of others and failure to take responsibility spiraling into the irrational, harmful and destructive behavior now manifesting in the so-called ‘voter anger’ the media keep talking about. Which BTW is another of the so-call main stream media’s self fulfilling prophecies; the more they talk about it, the realer it gets.

Voters have to take responsibility for their choices. The choices were a mistake, but rather than reflect and take responsibility, they blame and attack. After eight grueling years of Republican excess and control of all three branches, voters realized their mistake and gave Democrats a chance. The Democrats have had less than two years to correct the mistakes of the previous eight, not an easy chore, especially when the Republicans have done pretty much nothing to help and lot’s to obstruct. Yet the voters are ‘angry’ with the ‘system’ and are irrationally thinking of again turning the Nation over to the very people and ideas that have brought us to the current state of affairs.

What might happen if the voters stopped being ‘angry,’ blaming and irrational, stopped thinking of themselves as victims of Washington – I mean it is Washington, after all, not Moscow, tho the way some people talk, you’d think it was Moscow - took responsibility for their earlier mistaken choices and thought carefully about what to do now? Would they give Obama and the Democrats a few more seconds to undo what Bush and the Republicans had eight years to do? Would they cease being manipulated by fear, loathing and hatred and shift to a place that values cooperation, compromise and the radical idea that whatever party one’s in, we’re all Americans? What would happen if we demanded more of our politicians and absolutely shunned those that pandered to our fear, loathing and hatred? Perhaps we’d be Americans [not, God forbid, French, as we are now] and our country would be the United States of America again.

No comments:

Post a Comment