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This Month's Scripture Verse:

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.
2 Timothy 3:1-5

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Friday, November 18, 2022

Blog Break

Please note that the dates from the last posting of this blogpost have changed.

I am taking a blog break from posting from Friday, November 18th to Monday, December 12th
. The next new post will be on Tuesday, December 13th. In the meantime, you can visit some of the other pages on this blog accessed through the tabs shown above or the incomplete list below. 

Other Pages

  1. Audio-Visual Library Page (this is my favorite page on the website)
  2. Activism page
        Contains announcements of some major activist events. If you don't see your event there, email me at curtday111@yahoo.com
  3. Favorite Articles page
        Links to some of my current and all-time favorite articles to read. Includes articles by Chris Hedges, Bill Blum, Noam Chomsky, Robert Jensen, Rachel Corrie, Anna Politkovshaya, Rita Corriel, and the Political Jesus blog (I highly recommend this blog)
  4. Favorite Websites page
        This contains most of the websites that I visit the most.
  5. Past Blog Posts page
        If you want to check the complete list of blog posts on this blog, please click this tab. The posts are divided into regular posts, reviews, and the ONIMs

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Comments Which Conservatives Block From Their Blogs For November 16, 2022

 Nov 14

To R. Scott Clark and his article on how thinkers like Descarte contributed to todays 'addition to autonomy.' Clark is taking his cue here from Carl Trueman's two volume work on Modernity. This article appeared in Heidelblog.

Gee, the nerve of some people in a heteroreligious society for wanting autonomy. And that is despite history being  rich with the failures of religious authoritarianism. 

And how does the above article talk about the failures of human autonomy? It does so by focusing on sexual issues and abortion. Never mind that there were gender identity issues in some Native American tribes preceding their Western caused demise. And never mind that many of those Native American tribes honored those who were not cisgendered.

Of course Capitalism, , with its emphasis on the individual, especially in its neoliberal phase where income and wealth disparities have been consistently increasing along with its contributions to polluting the world and causing climate change are not mentioned. Neither are those Amendments in The Constitution that focus on the rights of the individual. For example, the right of an individual to bear arms is not mentioned  despite the prevalence of gun violence that exists in our society.

If we can say that we have a problem with an addiction to human autonomy, can we also say that some religious people have a problem with an addiction to religious authoritarianism? The answer to that question can be found in Western History. And, in fact, some of today's emphasis on human autonomy has its roots in the abuses found in religious authoritarianism. But that is not given any credit for today's addiction to human autonomy nor is it described as a heart problem caused by a rejection of God in the above article. I hope that it is mentioned in one of Trueman's books.

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Nov 15

To Christopher Nelson and his article on how war persists and that we must thank those who fought in them on our side. This appeared in the Imaginative Conservative.

There are two points to be made here.  One is that just as 'war endures,' Bertrand Russell and Albert Einstein reminded us that, in the nuclear age, we must choose between war and survival.   I believe that this choice between war and survival is what Nelson meant when he talked about wars becoming absurd.

Second. if we really want to honor our veterans, we will do so while they are on active duty. And we can do that by closely examining each time and situation where our troops are sent in harm's way so that we can either support the government's decision to battle another country or group, or we can do our best to effectively speak out against the war so that the war is either not fought or is significantly shortened.

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To R. Scott Clark and his article on the Oklahoma governor's prayer that claimed the state of Oklahoma for Christ. This appeared in Heidelblog.

I reacted to the governor's prayer differently than what was stated above because I have heard similar prayers from people not in authority. Thus the context of his words would indicate just an expression of Pentecostal spirituality rather than a pronouncement of dominion in the name of Christ.

Therefore, I would not take the content of the governor's prayer to have any kind of serious political content or intention. Other than that, I agree with Clark's reaction if the governor's claim was a political pronouncement. 




Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Did The Party Hear The Voters Sing?

 This year's Midterm Elections were certainly a relief to some and a disappointment to others. I know some religiously conservative Christians who, despite the threats made to what's left of our democracy, were hoping for a red tidal wave in hopes of furthering restrictions on abortion. And so some pro-life voters were sorely disappointed. 

Another group that was depressed after enough of the votes were counted were the Trumpublicans. The Trumpublicans had the 2024 Presidential Election in their gun sights. But the midterm results have now obscured their vision. They were hoping that if they put enough election deniers into the right offices, they could use this years elections to guarantee Trump Presidency in 2024 despite the popular vote. After all, winning the Presidency via electoral votes has fewer negative legal consequences than storming the Capitol. Who would have thought?

But there were those who were at least relieved by this year's election results if not delighted. Some Never-Trump voters were hoping that these midterm results might finally displace Trump from leading the Party so that they could return to their political home. So though it might not be accurate to say that they were delighted, these results must have at least partially pleased them.

There are some not commonly thought of pro-lifers who were relieved and delighted by this year's elections. This group is pro-life not by virtue of their position on abortion, but because of their support for social safety nets and belief in what climate scientists are telling us to do.

Also relieved were people like me who see the Trumpublicans as not only failing to be adequately pro-life in terms of their support for social safety nets and belief in what climate scientists say, but who pose a self-righteous threat to democracy through their irresponsible promotion of Trump's Big Lie. Trumpublican candidates for state Secretary of State offices were taking a Trumpian approach to Post Modernism. That is that they would not accept a 2024 election as being valid if the voters voted blue. Pennsylvania's Republican gubernatorial candidate was promising to do the same. And that could easily result in preventing the Democratic Presidential candidate from winning the 2024 Electoral College vote which, in turn, would throw the election to the House of Representatives regardless of how the voters voted. And because of how the House of Representatives would select the President, that would throw the Presidency to the Republican candidate.

Needless to say that most of Trump's endorsed candidates were not selected by the voters. All 4 of Trump's endorsed state Secretary of State candidates lost. Trump's endorsed Senatorial and Gubernatorial candidates in Pennsylvania lost and that involved a flipping of a Senate seat. The Dems have retained control of the Senate regardless of the outcome of Georgia's runoff election. Here we should note that the Senate elected in 2020 has shown that Democratic control of either chamber of Congress is not much to brag about. 

And so there was no red wave. There might be a Republican take over of the House, but not the Senate. Some key state governorships were either maintained by Democratic Party candidates or are in danger of falling to Democratic candidates. Perhaps the Republican Party leadership will hear what the voters are singing about Trump. Perhaps the Republican Party leadership will understand that for as long as they rely on Trump to be their figurehead, the Republican Party will be known as the Party of and to the January 6 Insurrection. Perhaps the Republican Party leadership will see that Trump is becoming a liability to their Party. Those who have family members who are part of the Trump political cult can only hope. And just perhaps, the Republican Party leadership who are unwilling to throw Trump under the bus would consider replacing him with another Republican Party bus driver.

Friday, November 11, 2022

The 3rd Day After

  Friday's posts are usually a review of a Christian article. But today's post will be different because of the recent elections.

Today is the 3rd day after the Midterm elections and there is hope in one sense. Those election deniers who were in league with Trump did not perform as well as feared or expected. As of the writing of this article, it looks like the Republicans will flip the House while it is way too close to call the Senate results. And thus, while the Dems are not worth bragging about, they are still the lesser of two evils.

But the news is not all terrible because of the plight of the many election deniers who ran for their state's governor's office or Secretary of State office. And that gives hope for the 2024 election. The hope it gives is that if a Democrat wins the 2024 Presidential election, we have a better chance of not ending up with a Constitutional crisis.

However, we are not out of the woods yet. Though the good news is that it appears that Trump's personal power over the Republican Party might be diminishing, Trumpublicanism in the form of other Republicans who share his agenda might still be alive and kicking.

Trumpublicanism, in the form of MAGA, that chants the America First mantra, is Climate Change denying, is pandemic denying and being skeptical of medical science, is denying the existence of systemic racism, promotes the domestic side of neoliberal capitalism, and passionately embraces authoritarian rule might have more life than Trump's personal political power. As mentioned before in a previous blog article (click here for the article), DeSantis could be the new front runner and figure head for Trumpublicanism. And for those who voted blue to protect democracy,  DeSantis could be a more ominous and formidable foe than Trump.

DeSantis has already proven that he can do an adequate job as governor, which is an executive position--that is if we don't count his political agenda as a criteria. Though not without blemish, DeSantis does not the PR baggage that Trump has. But there is one characteristic which DeSantis has displayed to a comparable level with Trump: authoritarian rule. That authoritarian rule can be seen the vengeance he is currently seeking on Disney World for their public opposition to one of his proposals on LGBT and education. In addition, he has waged war on wokism both in the public and private sectors by trying to censor certain perspectives of racism in America from being taught. Though the courts struck down his efforts to prohibit wokism from being taught in the private sector, he has succeeded in prohibiting them from being taught in schools.

It's not that DeSantis is free from PR problems. His recent stunt that lured undocumented people to fly to Massachusetts could have legal consequences on him personally. And his recent advertisement claiming that God created him on the 8th day as a fighter to protect the people from Florida could, and should, turn off religiously conservative Christians who have an adequate amount of religious education. Even for those without any serious religious education, such an ad should remind them of the pathological level of narcissism that we saw in Trump.

So as John Oliver would ask at this point: What can we do now or where do we go from here? What we can do is to first encourage the establishment Republicans to split from the Trumpublicans even if Trump's political power is starting to wane. The spirit of Trumpublicanism is still alive in the Republican Party. DeSantis is an example of the influence of Trumpublicanism. The splitting of the party would become a lethal blow to Trumpublicanism regardless of Trump's political prowess. Of course, the split would also hurt establishment Republicans so their splitting the party up would make them into political kamikazes. We have already seen that Kinzinger and Liz Cheney. 

As for the Dems, they need to initiate contact with and eagerly work with establishment Republicans to first collaborate as a general principle, and to repair the prestige of the establishment Republicans. That would make establishment Republicans more competitive among conservative voters.

While the Democratic Party must become more progressive in terms of defending and protecting the marginalized in society and protecting the environment from pollution and the emission of greenhouse gases, they need to learn the lesson the lesson that Vlad Lenin learned all to late. The Dems have to temper the speed at which they promote the progressive agenda so that it does not bring too fast of a change for people to take. That means that progressives themselves will have to be patient with measures that either morally or practically require immediate action and resolution.

From the Marxist perspective, we need to empower workers both at the workplace, especially in publicly owned businesses, and in government. Currently many workers favor the GOP; but they do so because of culture war concerns. In the meantime, their contribution to the workplace remains reduced to just production and only rewarded with pay. Workers are given little to no opportunity to influence the decisions and direction of the businesses they work in on a large scale. 

And since The Constitution prevents us from having a governmental structure that allows Americans to be represented by vocation, the Biden Administration must make extra efforts to incorporate input from workers of all stripes so as to empower them in government. But an even better suggestion than that is for the Biden Administration to push an American version of Germany's codetermination laws. Those laws require businesses to have a certain percentage of workers on their executive boards based on the total number of workers in the company.

We must continue to battle the Big Lie that says that Biden was elected because of fraud. Even though Big Lie candidates didn't do that well, the Big Lie's promoters and apologists will be diligent at persevering. And that lie could take off if the nation's economy takes a major hit or there is some other major crisis that makes people feel desperate.

Finally, the Democratic Party must open to welcoming balanced pro-life supporters into their party. Besides for the moral reasons, a practical reason would be that doing so would reduce the Republican Party's exploitation of religiously conservative Christians.

Are there other actions to be taken. Yes, but I will quit here because I am out of time and ideas.


Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Comments Which Conservatives Block From Their Blogs For November 9, 2022

 Oct 17

To R. Scott Clark and his article on lamenting the passing of Christendom and whether we should work for and want a restoration of some version of that Christendom. In that article, Clark describes in positive terms how there is a nature-grace divide here where we should want natural law to govern society while grace rules over the Church. This article was posted on Heidelblog.

Over all, the above article has good points to make. But there are false accusations made about certain groups, such as the ones made against libraries, school boards, and sexual revolutionaries.

There is no New Testament basis for restoring Christendom to America, I fully agree with Clark on that point. If only he had stopped there. For there is also no basis to so neatly  divide and group civil life with nature and  church with grace especially when both are concerned with morality. That division and grouping were made by past theological heroes who grew up and  lived in European Christendom; we don't see that division in the New Testament. But even with that morality, some who are claiming to be against the restoration of a past Christendom are promoting a Christendom-lite when it is the Church's understanding of nature and natural law that they desire to impose on civil life. In fact, some call imposing natural law, which for some Christians is the second table of the Law of Moses, 'Christian Nationalism.'

So let's talk about nature for example. Homosexuality violates the Biblical view of nature and how God designed it; but homosexuality is prevalent in the animal kingdom. Is that to say that homosexuality is in accord with nature? We should note here that same-sex behavior is exhibited in animals from anywhere between a few hundred species to over 1,500 species. If sin is not an issue with animals, then is it nature that is telling animals to practice same-sex behavior?

What we Christians who live in democratic societies must be fully aware of are the implications that come with concepts of democracy and freedom which we claim to cherish. Democracy is not just majority rule, it is a system where the majority exercises self-restraint so as to not oppress the minority nor to deny them their equal rights and status. And Freedom carries with it the same strain of self-restraint because Freedom - Equality = Privilege. Because of the influence of the free market on democracy and the penchant for authoritarianism by us religiously conservative Christians, we lack the full understanding of the self-restraint implied by those two terms.

We need to distinguish when we can promote certain rights in the context of a democratic and free society from when we should discourage or even prohibit those same rights in the Church. Just as we can promote the freedom of religion in society while prohibiting the worship of false gods in the Church, we must learn to distinguish between promoting the freedom to engage in certain sexual practices and relationships in society from prohibiting those same practices and relationships in the Church and in our evangelism.

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Oct 28

To Heidelblog and its article that quotes Felice J. Killer's letter complaining about a regulation that prevents parents from being involved in the school's response to those children who are suffering from Gender Dysphoria.

Felice J. Killer's entire letter can be found at:

    https://pitt.substack.com/p/re-administrative-regulation-259

Felice Killer's letter, part of which is quoted in the above article, shows the discrepancy between what some, especially many religiously conservative Christians, believe about gender identity and what actually exists. Yes, parents have the right to raise their children in the way they see fit, but that right is not absolute especially when the safety of a child is in question.

Because of how we approach the Scriptures, many of us read Genesis 1:27 in ways that unnecessarily contradict the real world. How we read Genesis 1:27 where it says how God made man as male and female is a prime example. That statement was made prior to the fall of both man and nature. What we see today are a variety of ways by which a person could be born as being intersex. Being intersex could include being born with mixed genitalia where the external genitalia is not in accord with the internal genitalia. Or being intersex could involve where the external genitalia are not pronounced enough to determine the gender. One can have the the normal chromosomes of a male or female and still be be intersex. Or one can either have one sex chromosome or 3 sex chromosomes. And so we are not just physically born male or female after the fall.

The assumption made by many of my fellow religiously conservative Christians about gender identity is that even with those who are not intersex but are male or female, that what we know from the external  genitalia is the only message nature is giving to people. But considering what we know about those who are intersex, we can no longer say that for sure. And thus, we can't assume from what we can observe from the chromosomal makeup of a person and one's biological sex what nature is actually saying to a person.

And then again, there are the psychological and social factors that go into gender identity. What we can't afford to do that both the LGBT community and many fellow religiously conservative Christians do is to conflate biological sex with gender identity while being faithful to the Scriptures. Thus, we must recognize one's biological sex and their gender identity as two separate entities. And just as one's gender identity cannot change one's biological sex, one's biological sex cannot be forced onto one's gender identity.

Here we should remember the Church's failure when it came to recognizing Heliocentrism. Many Reformed and Roman Church leaders not only initially rejected Heliocentrism, they attacked it with a vengeance because of how they read the Scriptures regarding creation and the earth's relationship with the sun and the heavens. And lest we think that gender identity issues are peculiar to Western Civilization, we should realize that some Native American tribes recognized up to 5 different genders. So the question becomes, when it comes to biological sex and gender identity, are we doing to gender identity issues what the Church did to those who promoted Heliocentrism?   Our challenge as Christians is to be willing to relearn what we thought we knew about biological sex and gender identity while remaining faithful to the Scriptures.

Some other things are true regarding gender identity. Gender Dysphoria can be experienced by children as young as 3 years old. And that the devastating effects that can occur to those who are experiencing Gender Dysphoria are associated with family and peer reactions to those people to the extent that it can cause depression and even produce suicidal tendencies. Thus, those are safety issues when it comes to responding to those with Gender Dysphoria.

I don't know what the correct balance is to the competing issues of helping children with Dysphoria and parental rights. But I do know that many of us religiously conservative Christians have a too simplistic view of the relationship between one's biological sex and one's gender identity. And that too simplistic of a view can make us feel persecuted as we wrongly respond to those with Gender Dysphoria. Remaining faithful to the Scriptures should not prohibit us acknowledging the complexity involved when it comes to Gender Dysphoria. 





Tuesday, November 8, 2022

Those Were The Days

While in the Kennedy Center in DC, the wife and I ventured off to a hallway that contained some of the speeches, statements, and positions made by JFK--President John F. Kennedy.  What is to be most admired about JFK is not necessarily the wide view he had on issues, the country, and the world as large as it was, but the leader he became after listening to others and after not always performing best under certain crises. 

It took time for JFK to come around on civil rights issues. In fact, he had to learn from actions and sacrifices made by ordinary people in the struggle for civil rights and racial justice. 

Likewise, it took the Cuban Missile Crisis for JFK to give a speech at American University that was so valued that it was published by Pravda, which was the official newspaper of the Communist Party (click here for the speech).

As I walked out of that hallway, I spoke to an employee of the Kennedy Center and lamented that we don't have leaders like JFK anymore. We don't have leaders who could truly work with those from the other party. Rather, we have political parties and  leaders who have passionately embraced tribalism. We have political candidates who claim that they, by themselves, can solve the social and economic problems we face while asserting that their opponents can only destroy our nation. And because of the tribalism that their parties and perhaps they themselves promote, they are preventing themselves from learning. They are preventing themselves from learning from those either they cared little for or opposed and from their own errors.

Listen to the speech previously linked to. Note how JFK was  was able to identify the positive attributes of the people of an enemy nation  while criticizing its ideology. He also spoke loudly about our nation's own vulnerabilities. Those abilities are why JFK could learn from others and from his failures. And those abilities are absent in most of the political candidates for whom all of us will vote tomorrow. The absence of those abilities allows for some to give into the desire to rule over those whose views they oppose or whose lives they disapprove of. The absence of those abilities is why we Americans can no longer even agree on what the facts are. 

We are about to see the demise of our nation. Too many people, from all ideological sides, passionately embrace tribalism and are willing to believe conspiracy theories that fit their political beliefs. Their embrace of tribalism has moved them to demonize their opposition while canonizing themselves. And in so doing, they have guaranteed our nation's self destruction. And it won't be until it is too late, until they have seen the destruction they have wrought, that they will be able to see the cruel foolishness that their ignorance, arrogance, and self righteousness brings.




Saturday, November 5, 2022

Pre Election Special: Election Reflection

The article below was written as a special article seeing that I am on a blog break until next week. But I did want to write about the election in a timely fashion.  

Having recognized that January 6 Insurrection has only begun on that date, each election year in the present and near future will only be a major source of anxiety for me and for some others I have corresponded with. I am afraid that what some used a riot to accomplish will now use elections and laws to finish. What began and could come to fruition is a Trump conservative coup of the government.

Such would not bother George Carlin if he was still alive today. Why? It is because he viewed the politicians who are elected as a reflection of the voters. After all, those politicians were born and bred in America and were educated in American schools, universities, and churches. And they worked in American businesses and were elected by American voters. But most of all, Carlin said the following about the kind of character we could expect of elected politicians (click here for the source):

'This is the best we can do folks. This is what we have to offer. It's what our system produces: Garbage in, garbage out. If you have selfish, ignorant citizens, you're going to get selfish, ignorant leaders. Term limits ain't going to do any good; you're just going to end up with a brand new bunch of selfish, ignorant Americans. So, maybe, maybe, maybe, it's not the politicians who suck.'

And perhaps it is the possibility that our politicians reflect who we are as Americans that is the most ominous sign that we can get from the election if Carlin is at least partially right.

The two characteristics that we should be able to see in ourselves as Americans if this year's Midterms and the 2024 general election go south are our selfishness and ignorance. Selfishness and ignorance should not be too hard to point out when looking at the political advertisements we see on TV. Advertisements for each major political party calls candidates from the other political party 'extremists' and 'radicals.' And without even asking the question of being radical or extremist compared to what. These commercials have already firmly implanted in the minds of many viewers and readers that those who are radical or extreme must be a threat and thus opposed without considering any evidence.

Our preferences indicate how observant Carlin was in calling American voters selfish and ignorant. Those preferences can be partially but significantly indicated by 3 comparisons in what we choose. The comparisons are our preference for either reality or simplicity, sharing or being selfish, and looking to collaborate or seeking to control.

Reality or Simplicity

The above choice involves how we see the world and what is happening around us. Of course, when candidates rely on pejorative labels like 'extremist' or 'radical,' then it is easy to see how such ads play to those who prefer to see what is wrong in those who have different views. This is especially true in those who are authoritarian followers. That is because such people are driven by fear and thus respond to fear-mongering.

What the pejorative and laudatory use of labels do is to give simplistic, all-or-nothing descriptions people. The recipients of those labels are portrayed as being all good or all bad. The truth is that most, if not all, of us are mixed bags. We do some good and we do some bad. Just like our favorite professional athletes, sometimes our political approaches or politicians succeed and sometimes they fail. Some times our politicians act honorably and sometimes they don't. And the same applies to each of us. Thus laudatory and pejorative labels show a preference for simplicity than reality.

In addition, many prefer to have a simplistic view of our issues. Take inflation for example. While some want to scapegoat the spending policies of President Biden for the inflation we are experiencing. The problem with blaming inflation solely on President Biden is that inflation is a global problem. And our inflation rate is similar to that of being experienced by other western nations.

In actuality, inflation has a been caused by a number of factors set off by the pandemic and the war in Ukraine. Has Biden's spending contributed to inflation? Possibly. After all it did introduce additional money into the market. And certainly Covid financial aid could have could have been given out with more discrimination. But where would many people who lost their jobs during the pandemic or who are from the lower economic classes be without government aid?

A very similar approach taken to inflation is being taken to crime by some. The reality is that crime rates are determined by several factors. And some kinds of crimes are caused by factors some of which are different from other crimes. Thus, the tough guy "law and order" approach of mass incarceration, though relieving the immediate fears of those who enjoy economic privilege, does not adequately address society's problem with crime. But again, those who prefer simplicity to reality are prone to scapegoating someone or some group for our current crime rates. 

Likewise, the abortion issue is where we see the preference for simplicity over reality. Those who believe that abortion is only about women's rights or solely about the rights of the unborn show a preference for simplicity over reality.

Another issue that is often dealt with in simplistic terms is racism. Many want see racism solely as an individual's personal problem. Many of those same people believe that racism was adequately dealt with with the Civil Rights reforms of the 1960s. Martin Luther King Jr did not take that approach. In 1967, he called the earlier era of his work a 'struggle for decency' while his then latter work focused on gaining real equality (click here for the source).

In addition, some candidates are being grossly misrepresented in commercials that take comments and positions grossly out of context and do not show what these candidates are really advocating.  The misrepresentation is deliberate and it takes an informed person to determine where the misrepresentations are taking place.

Sharing or Being Selfish

One might notice that most of the political ads appeal to the immediate needs of individuals without regard to greater needs. Taxes is such an issue. Those who promise to indiscriminately cut taxes are also advocating at least one of the following: increasing the deficit and/or the cutting of government programs especially those needed by the vulnerable.

Likewise, appeal to gun rights is almost solely about some projected taking away of one's guns. What is missing is how the current penchant for legalizing the carrying of handguns without permits can easily increase in gun violence and violent crime. In fact, in one attack ad that attempts to associate the current rise in crime on the Democrats, it shows gang members shooting at people in public. But doesn't allowing the carrying of hand guns without permits potentially add to that kind of crime.

But we also need to include here that access to elective abortions appeals to the individual without regard to how it affects others. For not only are lives of unborn children taken with the legalization of elective abortion, a certain ethic of dehumanizing human life for the benefit of one group is promoted. 

But we also have to note there are times when abortion is not an elective procedure. On this matter, we need to let input from the medical community to determine when election is being done to protect the life of the mother. In addition, we need to recognize that if we are going to require that women who became pregnant from rape or incest to carry the unborn to birth, then the government must also provide the necessary help and resources for those women who are required to give birth to children conceived in such horrific circumstances.

Another area in which there is a choice between sharing and being selfish is in the area of environmental regulations. Do such regulations cost people jobs? That is possibly the case. However, the long-term and even short-term costs of allowing polluting the environment or contributing to climate change on the general public both here and around the world are far more weightier than the loss of some jobs--some of which is due to the mantra that corporations must maximize the ROI for investors. 

Looking to Collaborate  or Seeking Control

Polarization has led to certain group to seek exclusive control of the government. The current polarization is, in large part, the result of the decades of demonization of non-conservative politicians and political ideologies by right-wing media stars such as Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Mark Levin. And of those three, the person who has most effectively pushed the demonization of non-conservatives is Rush Limbaugh.

With the demonization of non-conservatives came certain traits that are inherent in authoritarian personalities. One of the most prominent traits is the employment of a black-white worldview. In addition, showing hostility and aggression toward those who do not hold to traditional beliefs or practices is also a part of authoritarian personalities.

But along with the promotion of those traits comes the arrogant assumption by Leftists, Liberals, Conservatives, and Libertarians is that their own ideologies were omniscient in that they have nothing to learn from the other ideological positions. And so the emerging belief that one's group's ideology had everything to teach the other groups and nothing to learn from them has led to the demonization of others and the current seeking of exclusive control over the government--that statement borrows from a phrase used by Martin Luther King Jr.

We should say something about arrogance; it is most often based on ignorance. The belief that any human's ideology is sufficient enough to adequately address all of our problems is one that revolves around the worship of one's own group and/or pet theories. Humans are not capable of omniscience and that is true regardless of the existence of God.

But there is another issue involved in this choice between looking to collaborate or seeking control. That is issue is democracy. Inherent in a democracy is a certain egalitarianism. Inherent in democracy is a self-restraint that prohibits one from seeking their own interests at the expense of denying equality for other people. Denying equality for other people, even when it is the will of the majority was called oppression by Thomas Jefferson.

The belief that we can reduce democracy to that of majority rule comes from the Free Market's influence on our society. For with the Free Market comes notions of competition leading to conquest. If Democracy had a significant influence on the Free Market we would see less income and wealth disparity because there would be a desire to have a more, but not complete, equitable distribution of wealth.

This combination of the promotion of authoritarian traits, the arrogant assumption of the omniscience in one's own ideologies or even leaders, and the ignorance of what what democracy is about has led to the preference of many to want exclusive control of the government for their leaders rather than to choose those who are looking to collaborate because one understands that one's own theories and ideologies are, though useful, limited and thus inadequate by themselves to address people's need especially in an ever growing interdependent national and global economies

Elections

So when it comes to the Midterms, we will see what grades that not only our politicians receive, but what we the people deserve. Will we choose leaders who favor simplicity, appeal to our selfishness, and look to gain exclusive control over our governments? Or will we elect leaders who embrace reality with its complexities, the sharing of wealth, and the sharing of power which is inherent in seeking to collaborate? The problem here is that with some of our choices, there are no candidates who adequately accept reality, who appeal to our morals and desire to share, and who want pluralism in our government.  In that case, we will have to choose the lesser of available evils.