TUESDAY, MARCH 22, 2016
The souls of the dead and of Us: The gruesome events in Brussels today brought a question to our minds.
We'll wait a day or three to explore it. The question involves the way we liberals are inclined to deploy our bombs when we discuss Those People, the nation's appalling Trump voters.
Eventually, our question will go something like this:
We won't be asking you a question about Candidate Trump. We won't be asking you to agree with one of his widely-discussed proposals, to the extent that the proposal in question is a proposal at all.
We'll be asking a different question. We'll be asking if you can imagine someone agreeing with that proposal without assuming that the person in question is a racist, bigot, xenophobe, nativist and of course an Islamophobe.
In short, can you imagine someone disagreeing with you about that proposal without assuming that the person is therefore evil, The Other?
Dating back into prehistory, we the humans are strongly inclined to loathe The Others. This ancient loathing started out as a survival skill.
Today, the impulse is much less helpful. That said, it seems to us that we modern "liberals" are equipped with a healthy dose of this ancient instinct.
In accord with pre-human laws of loathing, we liberals are often unable to see the fact that we do in fact loathe. According to those pre-human laws, it's always The Others who loathe.
By ancient, pre-human rule of law, there can be no loathing by Us. It seems to us that we modern liberals are possibly maybe caught in this trap and perhaps sometimes like it there.