Friday, February 3, 2017

Analyzing the Trump Voter


There is a core belief that sits in the hearts of all Trump voters. And that isn't racism or misogyny or hatred of the working poor necessarily. Hear me though on this. Many of those beliefs are for sure A reason why some people support Trump. But they aren't THE reason. 

The reason people voted for Trump is an inherent belief that there just isn't enough to go around. 

Enough what? 

Everything. Anything really. 

There isn't enough food to feed everyone. There isn't enough space to house everyone. There isn't enough wealth to enrich everyone. 

These people believe that they need to get theirs and defend theirs before helping others. This is why people vote against their own best interests. They aren't looking to feed the poor. They're looking to ensure that they are fed themselves and they are going to TAKE what they need to TAKE to ensure that this occurs. They aren't looking to protect women's rights, they're looking to preserve a society from the past that catered to them. 

They simply don't care about others. They don't care about refugees from another country. To them they are competition for resources. They will use and justify using any and all physical and psychological differences that make you different from them to compartmentalize in their minds the belief that they are not more important than you--to dehumanize you. 

The same is true in reference to Black people. 

Gay people. 

Women. 

There is an entire generation of poor white men in this country that actually believe that there isn't enough to go around. They've been shown the evidence their entire lives by those in power, those manipulating them to gain more power. They have been shown a scapegoat for all of their own problems, for all of the difficulties they've had in their lives--the Black person, the gay person, women, immigrants, refugees, "foreigners", "illegals", atheists, communists, socialists, and so on. Those who don't have can easily be manipulated by those who do. Waive a little chunk of what they want in front of their faces and point to the Black person, suggest that they somehow are the reason they don't "have". 

Keep this in mind when talking with Trump voters. Ask them for yourself if they feel they should get theirs first before helping others or if by helping others they can get theirs. 

The answer will surprise you. 

Or not, if you've been reading the signs.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

What Must be Done

It is very easy to look for reasons why this terrible thing has happened.  It's very easy to mourn and grieve for this loss.  The reasons why and feeling bad for what happened, however, do not solve the problem.

There is currently a realignment going on in the political parties of this country.  All wedge issues and core beliefs are now being bowed around one key issue.  It isn't outsider versus insider.  It's not change versus stagnation.  A change is happening.  At the core of the political realignment going on in this nation and across the Western World right now is the fight between corporation and person.  In one camp the wealthy and their influences are bleeding the world dry, treating people like cattle, a sharecrop between corporations.  In the other, the people of this nation are banding together.

Corporations are not people, as much as certain small numbers of wealthy people would otherwise say.  They have no real power.  It is an illusion.  The election of Donald Trump ripped open the Republican Party, bent over the barrel of corporate interests.  Now the Democratic Party take a hard look at itself.  The fractured collection of differing points of view under the guise of liberalism has reached its breaking point as well.  It will rupture in the coming months.  It has already begun in the highest levels of the Party as it tries to find its voice for the 2018 election cycle.

If we are smart, we tap into the power that has caused the ruptures in both parties.  People. We pull that power into the Democratic Party.  We embrace it.  We remove from the Party all corporate influence, because people, real living breathing people, are at their breaking point.  Tap into the frustration of millions of people in the Western World, who have been de facto enslaved by corporation over the past forty years, and we can rise up and rebalance our society.  We can repair the damage caused by Donald Trump and the uber wealthy.  We can make this country work, as it should, for all of us.  

The fact is that business is not evil into and of itself.  It is however far over-extended in its influence currently.  Wage laws have been decimated.  The earning power of the middle class has been flattened.  Corporations are supposed to work for the people, for us.  We are not supposed to be beholden to corporations.  Peel back the veneer of the corporation and see them for what they are.  They are a few people, fewer than a hundred, who control our health through their impact on the ACA, our education through their big contracts with the Department of Education and the pseudo-functional charter school system that fleeces billions out of education and into their own pockets, to proxy wars functionally carried out by the government but padding the pockets of the uber wealthy and costing us our lives-- quite literally your personal well-being.

In the words of George Carlin, "The upper class: keeps all of the money, pays none of the taxes.  The middle class: pays all of the taxes, does all of the work.  The poor are there just to scare the shit out of the middle class--keep them showing up at their jobs."

We are enslaved to them.

Now is the time to right the ship.  Now power will swing back in our direction.  Not because of Trump.  Certainly not as a result of anything he does.  But in defiance to him.  In defiance to the system he represents.  In defiance to racism, sexism, homophobia, and every other tool of division they use against us to weaken us.  We, the people, are strong together.  One people.  And we are coming.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Gay Life Lesson: Be Real

The number one issue gay guys talk about when they mention dating is guys being "fake" or guys "playing games".  Shocker, I know.  So here are some life lessons from your resident gay blogger to help avoid being that person yourself.  Be the change you want to be.  Change begins at home.  So here we go:

1.  When a guy texts you, unless you're under some sort of duress--don't text and drive, if you're in the hospital getting emergency appendectomy surgery he'll forgive the delay--DON'T whatever you do purposely ignore the text for an hour or two or a day or seven days in an attempt to play hard to get  It's not playing hard to get, it's rude.  Treat a text message the same as if someone walked up to you and said what they texted you.  Worst case scenario "hey I'm in a meeting, chat later..."  It's not that difficult to have some manners when texting.  We all know you look at your phone thirty times a minute.  It's just plain rude to keep someone waiting.

2.  Along the same lines as the previous point, let's talk about disappearing DURING a string of text messages.  Again the same rule applies, treat texting like you do a face-to-face discussion.  You guys were chatting back and forth for an hour and then you say something like "ok so what time do you need me to pick you up from your mom's?" or whatever you happen to say--the sort of thing that doesn't assume the end of a stream of consciousness and does assume an answer is necessary.  And then what?  He disappears for two hours.  So you sit there.  And wait.  And wait.  I mean he needed a ride after all.  You don't want to seem like an unprepared guy.  He finally gets back to you and then the shocker... he got delayed and won't need a ride for another four hours.

Basically, don't do this.  And if they do it to you, then don't bother with them.  They've clearly got enough going on in their life that they don't have time for anything potentially serious with you.  Move on.

3.  Following the last two points let's talk about playing hard to get.  Aloof isn't sexy.  It's disrespectful.  If you feel strongly about someone, let them know.  If you don't know, let them know that.  If you don't want to be with them, let them know that too.  Guys think they have to play hard to get to keep a guy around.  This isn't true.  If he wants to stay around, he will, whether you play hard to get or not.  You're more likely to piss off a good guy who now thinks you aren't interested than to actually get him to stick around.  

4.  Be yourself.  Don't pretend to be someone else for someone because you think they like that personality you're trying to convey.  You know what, he's a super masculine guy and you think he only likes super masculine guys?  Well, he's in bed with you right, and you're kind of middle of the road.  Maybe that's what he wants?  Even if it isn't though, pretending to be someone you're not will only leave you miserable in the long run.  You will not be happy in a relationship if you're not being yourself.

5. Grindr.  You went out on a really nice date with a really sweet guy and all signs point major potential.  So you go home afterward, get bored, and go straight to your Grindr app.  You're just bored though; it's not like you're actually looking for a hookup... you're still buzzing about this guy after all.  But then hey, what's this, HE is back on Grindr too!  WTF??  *Shoots laser beams out of your eyes and your head explodes*  The jealous part of you feels like shit because clearly he's no better than all the rest.  Clearly the date didn't mean that much to him.  You know what, fuck him; he's not worth my time.  Right?  Yet you were online too.  And he's probably online checking to see if you're online too just like you're doing.  So now you're both feeling shitty and think that the other doesn't really see potential with them, or worse, were lying about the potential they claimed to see.

Life lesson, give it a rest!  We're all guilty of this.  Just put the app down.  Give him a text tomorrow and be your adorable self.  Don't expect him to do the same.  It's better you don't know if he's online anyways.  It's not like you're dating yet or anything.  You went on one date.  It's still casual.  You don't have the right to think he wouldn't be talking to other guys still.  For your own sake, don't look him up on Grindr or other dating apps.  Take him at his word.  If he's interested he will stick around.  If he's not, live, learn, and move on.

6.  Communication.  We all know it's key but we frequently forget how important it really is.  If you don't like something, say something.  Be reasonable and kind.  If it's something you like.  Say something just the same!  Tell him what you like and don't like.  The worst thing that can happen is you both realize that you're incompatible.  It's best to find out earlier than later.  You'll save yourself a lot of heartache in the long run.

7.  Fear.  All the games that everyone plays (and yes we ALL do it to some extent) are played in an attempt to keep the guy around.  We want him to stick around so we play hard to get.  We want him to stick around so we ignore how much we hate that he drinks too much or treats you poorly.  We want him to stick around because we're afraid of being without him to varying degrees.  Humans are social creatures, we want to find someone to connect with on a deep level.  It's natural.  Don't fight it.  But, at the same time you have to be careful about how you're coming across when trying to find that special someone.  We get it in our heads that if we act a certain way, say (or don't say) certain things, that we'll keep him around longer.  And that's the operative word.  Longer.  If you need to play games then you realize on some level that he's not going to stick around and you think logically that it's better to have him for a while than not have him at all.

If he doesn't like you for who you are, LET HIM GO.  He's not the one for you.  The longer you stay with him, the longer you're not going to find the right one for you.  So, don't play games.  If he sticks around then maybe he's the one for you.  If he pushes you away, then go find someone else who will be a better match.

And for the love of your sanity, don't beg him to stay.  Don't bargain with him.  And don't play with his emotions.  Be respectful and you will find the right guy.  Play games and all you will find is eventual disappointment.