March 12, 2016

Why You Gotta Be So Angry?

The usual clutched pearls are happening over the violence that broke out in Chicago at a Trump rally - which is going to be more common as the endless slog of election cycle continues - and the Republican front runners all had identical responses: it's Obama's fault.

Yes, the target audience members are that stupid; and no, there really isn't much of a difference between the candidates. Trump is probably a bit more to the left of the others, but who the hell can tell what he'd do in office?  I certainly can't.  I literally have no clue: he's made impossible promises and has a fan base that desperately wants to hear them; but he's had wildly different views on half of the things he's said publicly and the other half is clearly fantasy talk.  So...?

Back to the violence, then.

You'll see and hear several people, from the obvious talking heads of the Right to the well-meaning milquetoasts on the Left, say that Gosh, That's Not Going to Help!  Anger Doesn't Solve Anything!

Then Hillary Clinton made a fantastically ignorant statement about Nancy and Ronald Reagan.  And then sent a comment that read, literally: "Sorry about that."

Her initial statement?  That the Reagans had 'helped start a national conversation on HIV and AIDS.'

"Sorry about that"?  Seriously?  The Reagan White House was laughing about the deaths of gay men from HIV and AIDS related causes, and it took years, thousands of deaths and hundreds of thousands of infections before he even mentioned it publicly.  Inside the White House were members of the Moral Majority, armageddonists (which included Reagan himself - partially explaining his approach to environmental policies) and other holy rollers.  Needless to say, something nicknamed "The Gay Plague" wasn't going to be treated with any seriousness beyond a shrug and righteous smile.  After all, it only affected people who deserved it, right?

This should sound familiar.

It caused anger.  Lots of it.  And that anger, finally, got the disease noticed.  As much as people were annoyed by ACT UP and similar groups, that anger is what motivated people to look, even if it was just to ask "what are those faggots so angry about?"

Welcome to Chicago.

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posted by Erin Butler at 12:37 pm

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