The false dichotomy of this election representing “good vs evil” has come up repeatedly in many/most of the political discussions I’ve had on fb recently.
I assert this false binary occurs for three reasons: A) a failure to see a beyond stark black/white options we have created in our minds, b) the result of the echo chamber(s) of our respective fb feeds—each of which is receiving different sets of positive feedback loops, and C) our hubris as a species
This meme encapsulates this false binary which is why I posted it. But I explain more below.
To clarify: I am as much a fan of Trump as a cow is for the slaughterhouse.
But because I tend to really appreciate logic and nuance as part of my personality, I tend to understand that there’s actually no real choice here at all! There is just two bad decisions at play.
Both “sides” of the aisle carry no real solutions (in fact both hurt us all irrevocably just in different ways). But I think I see now that the vast, vast majority of Americans can’t accept that simple fact.
At best, we want to defend a lesser of two evils and decry the devilry of the greater of two evils. At worst, we want a team to root for, a clear enemy to hate, and a protagonist to paint as a hero by comparison. Perhaps this is in our genetic makeup…?
It’s quite possible humanity at large has not yet evolved as a species to see through a nuanced lens. En mass, like a herd of cattle to the slaughter, we are a simplistic, single-dimensional, and hallow people; we want clear black-and-white decisions. A clear path to follow: our herd.
Tragically, 2020 gives us two (2) muted pastels when we yearn for a vivid palette of color.
Much akin the blind wallowing in Plato’s cave, we see (or don’t see) what we want! We decry one color as vibrant and the other as “not an option:” black as night and not even a color at all. We see what we want to see—what we NEED to see—and what the echo-chambers of our Facebook feed shout to us daily.
A clear bifurcation takes place in our minds, and half of the country swears one color is majestic—at least in comparison to the “unparalleled garbage” of the other color choice before then.
In truth, both colors are faded pastels—and share far more similarities than differences in their muted repugnance.
Both are tired colors and uninspiring colors; neither offers any real beauty, sophistication, or solutions to the patchwork of the American society they are meant to touch.
But in our eyes…to our warped eye one is glorious in comparison to the other’s wretchedness. And half of us truly sees the exact reverse of the other half.
We have fooled ourselves as a society. We have created an illusion of choice that simply fails to exist. But we hold to our choice—the RIGHT choice—with such faithful and dogged regard that it become part of who we are!
We have chosen the correct color; the other side’s color is evil and without merit. The other side is stupid and without morality.
OUR color is made sacrosanct in our eyes in reflection against the blackening void the OTHER color creates by its existence.
The other color is all that is wrong with humanity. The other color reflects a deepening sin and devotion to vile ideology. Our color pick is righteous! Our color pick is a mirror of ourselves.
Our choice mirrors the best of society and who I am—to defy its glory is to defy whom I am. And we simply can’t have that.
Our hubris enshrines this fact: because what I have chosen must be correct.
My social media crowd surrounds me and cheers me on daily—hourly—letting me know I picked the TRUE color, and that choice defines me and validates I am on the moral side of history.
Our hubris as a culture and a society insists upon it. We are unable to see nothing but the two stark colors—one that embodies me. It is me. It is who I am. The other is wretched and detestable. The other color is everything I am NOT. And that is why I hate it so—more than I love the color choice I have picked.
I hate what I am not more than I love what I am.