Revolutionary Civility: Abstention from Expressing Contempt
If you impartially pay attention to the processes within you, and long enough, I’m pretty sure that you will notice that Expressions of Contempt have a pay-off that is far more substantial than “letting off steam.” And certainly more reality-based than expecting the target to change whatever it is you hold contemptible in them.
What’s the real pay-off; the actual motive force for such expression? It’s that mighty rush of adrenaline flooding the system. End of story.
Take that away, and the need to express contempt will rarely appear.
Mind you, sometimes in society it is necessary to express contempt, just to keep the society viable. It can be used to bring someone else to sobriety of the soul; has been a tool to correct unjust behavior throughout history.
A tool that doesn’t work so well with psycho- and social-paths. (Where Apparatchiks, of, say, political parties or those kinds of manipulators fall in that regard…?)
The aforesaid find great value in encouraging people to be Contempt Junkies, to be doping themselves up. (There’s a reason they call it “dope.”)
It’s simply reality: people pumped up on adrenaline have their critical faculties largely turned off. It's easier to "get over" on them. They have increased openness, and vulnerability to, suggestion. Especially negative suggestions. There’s an increase in self-confidence (and self-righteousness) that is usually not warranted.
And of course, there’s setting people at each others throats, since the recipient of contempt is almost always likely to hurl it back. Downward spiral from there. The time-proven tactic of a minority who intend the subjugation of everyone else: Divide and Conquer.
Anyone paying attention to Corporate Media for the last 50 years must have noticed that when there's a major issue, like guns or abortions, there has never been anything but a pro- and con- person fighting each other. Not once has anyone here ever seen a panel devoted to working out a compromise, nor anyone on any panel ceding the other parties concern as being something to consider. Divide and conquer.
If anything is going to change in this country, we’re going to need Revolutionary Civility.
Perhaps a truce among the Everyday People, aka 99%. Abstaining from abusive language toward people with whom we disagree. And if the habit of expressing contempt (and Junkies do find it hard to give up their rush) then perhaps we can agree to aim it at the insanely corrupt -- in fact lunatic -- Two Parties and Media. The latter, in particular, does everything it can to keep us out of any meaningful role in our governance: working overtime to keep us divided, distracted, and ill-informed.
Let each and every member in office, the editors and news-readers, know that we know they function as enemies of the people, and our Democracy. With whatever mix of reason and contempt each of us can manage.
Abstain for blasting each other for, say, three months; alert our enemies of where they stand in our eyes. (I'm not saying we should refrain from disagreeing among ourselves on other issues. Just that such disagreement should be done in the manner of adults instead of brats). And if people just need a “fix” so desperately after three months, we can all go back to being the 1% Illites fools.
At this point, I’d like to try an experiment I’ve done, and seen fail, over the years.
I would request of you that you take some moments to really consider, and then to comment here, how Revolutionary Civility, plus focus on our common foes, can become something that actually happens. Thank you.