Why does it seem like there are more nutcases getting national attention … ?

I saw a documentary the other night about all this so-called ‘unrest’ across our country. A news organization was attempting to deal with and understand all the vitriol being spewed by all these different fractional groups.

Having come from a small town, I tend to recognize that there are always the nutcases among us, and in a small town, they are just more prominent. But, wow, on this documentary they showed all these people marching through the streets, holding placards and shouting stuff that used to be considered somewhat over the edge of treason by otherwise conservative Americans.

There’s an old joke from the days of BBSs and UseNet (yes, they’re bulletin-boards: pre-Internet, but electronically connected) about ‘Don’t Feed The Trolls’. It meant ‘Don’t respond to the crazy person that’s just trying to push his own point of view and start an argument or a flame war.’

My point is this: With our electronically-connected society now, everybody has a voice of equal loudness. With the kind of peer pressure you got in a small town, somebody would always turn to the nutball and say, “Stick a sock in it, Charlie. You know yourself that’s pure BS.” Only now we don’t have that. The nutcases get encouraged, of all things, to get louder. What is worse is that via the internet, these kinds of people find each other and before you know it, you have enough of them gathered together to make this craziness appear valid.

The worst thing about most of these folks is that they do not appear to be thinking for themselves. I see and hear the same old junk parroted time and again, and only the emotion behind it changes – it unfortunately gets angrier.

If you want to get angry about something, get angry in your own words, not someone else’s. Doing that at least means you’re thinking about what is bothering you.

And take a good hard look at what you’re basing your opinion upon. Cool off a little and ask yourself if it is true and if it fits within the bounds of common sense.

If the person you’re listening to shares what is an opinion as “True Fact” and offers no evidence to support it other than “secrets” or innuendo … do I need to really tell you not trust them? Or maybe I do, given the current situation. Remember all the evil the Joe McCarthy did to our country, all in the name of self-promotion. He too said he had ‘secret information.’

Look, I’m not saying our government is totally trustworthy. It after all is made up of humans. But we do have a checks-and-balances system that does keep things from going off the deep end. What I AM calling untrustworthy are the single individuals who claim to have ‘secret information’ and are presenting ideas and ideologies that are far from mainstream thought.

And those things keep us from unity.

Our strengths as Americans lie in our unity of thought, work, and purpose. Anything that takes us away from those three values and our unity takes away from our strength as a nation.


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