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Posts Tagged ‘conservative’

Can’t we all just get along?

In Health, history, News Media, Opinion, Politics, psychology, sociology, Uncategorized on May 1, 2018 at 12:14 pm

With only two issues of Deer In Headlines remaining, I felt that one of them should be dedicated to a discussion about civility and the destructive nature of hate. In short, we must try to get along better, regardless of political, religious, or socioeconomic differences.

Over the last few years, our country has become severely divided. There is a level of anger, hate, and mistrust out there now, the likes of which haven’t been seen since before the Civil War. Back then the division was primarily focused on slavery and states’ rights, but today Americans are arguing about a laundry list of issues from immigration to gun control.

Not that these topics haven’t caused discourse in the past, but now it’s fueled by an alarmingly, and continually advancing, level of anger and hatred. The radical right has become sickeningly intolerant to the point of disgust and the liberal left has grown increasingly less “liberal.” I mean you simply can’t say, “I’m liberal, and we love everyone, so long as they agree with everything we say.” Doesn’t work that way.

President Donald Trump took advantage of this divide and used it to gain traction in his run for the White House. Now, he waffles back and forth, blustering on Twitter about how great he is, while alienating even his own base at times with his ridiculous rants. Democrats turn their noses up at him and his cronies and their flagrant hypocrisy, all while crying in their soup about how he got this far in American government. Well, Dems, I’ll tell you who put him there, you did.

Political viewpoints have become so foggy that no one can tell who is for what anymore. The reason Trump won the presidential election wasn’t his winning personality, or Russian hacking, or anything else. It was because the Democratic base was so splintered and stubborn over Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders that they couldn’t just get behind one of them and move on.

That’s right Dems, as I have written before, you handed the White House to Donald on a silver platter. Remember that primaries and midterms happen this year and any failure to weaken Trump’s hold in Congress is totally in your hands. All you have to do is get out and vote!

All of that said, we must be able to return to a level of productive, constructive discourse. We should be able to disagree and have informed, intelligent debate on a topic instead of a bickering match. What’s the point of discussion with no purpose except to out-scream everyone else?

Much of the problem comes from the extremist mentalities once relegated to the fringe but which now seem to be in the majority. There is nothing wrong with liberals and conservatives cooperating for a common good. We can disagree yet still work toward the betterment of our society – but that doesn’t seem to be possible right now.

We are dealing with mass shootings made possible by the bizarre need of a tiny few to own military-grade machine guns should be something we can all agree is nuts. But that doesn’t seem to be the case. Instead, our country is overwhelmed by people obsessed with these weapons and backed by a massively powerful gun lobby from the NRA. Clearly, money is more important to these people than our kids.

Execution of warped immigration policies based on ignorance and hate that mistreat productive members of society rather than helping them with a path to proper citizenship. We should be rewarding people for feeling our country is a safe home for their families, not punishing them. It’s all ridiculous.

The long and short of it is that we must find a way to get along better. If we don’t learn to dial back the extremism and let cooler, more diplomatic heads rule, our country is in big trouble. So, for what it’s worth, I think we’re capable of doing better.

But all of that requires that each of us learns to be more compassionate, more tolerant, and more thoughtful. Since I won’t be around to poke you in the side after next week, remember to be good to each other.

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Liberals and corporate America must co-exist

In Business, Charities, Economy, Local News, Media, Opinion, Politics, Uncategorized on January 22, 2014 at 11:52 am

DIH LOGOIt wouldn’t be inaccurate to say that most liberals with a severe opinion of corporate America are primarily on the left-wing extremist end of things. But their voices are heard, nonetheless, and help to further expand the gap between left and right.

I recently posted to my social media page a paraphrased quote from a conservative business owner expressing her outrage over a liberal commentary on how businesses shamelessly promote themselves to generate sales. Her response was as follows, “Liberal bleeding hearts always seem to hate corporate America, right up until they want money for something.” Needless to say, the woman’s comment was not taken well by some of my liberal Facebook friends.

Regardless of how they want to think of themselves, liberal-based non-profits are, in fact, corporations in business. Although the term “non-profit” could be debated in many respects, they are still in business to create a product that generates revenue and pays salaries. In fact, they pay employees very well. The current CEO of National Public Radio pulls in about $1.4 million a year, a number that the network’s news commentators would likely find deplorable were it related to a commercial business chief.

So, how does one respond to a conservative business person who remarks, “If I advertise my business then the liberals call me vulgar? But it’s perfectly acceptable for them to go on TV and beg for money to keep their non-profit going. Why is that ok?” Seems like a simple question, but the answer is a bit more complex.

Corporate advertisers are regularly accused of manipulating consumers into buying. At the same time, non-profits (typically liberal causes or organizations) are just as manipulative when asking for “member support,” or however they decide to word it. Is there a difference? Not really. It’s actually more about perspective.

debt calamityLiberal non-profit heads will argue that what they do is for a greater good; people helping people, and so on. At the same time, they will accuse the conservative business owner of being interested only in turning a profit and getting rich. He, in turn, will refute the charge, saying that he’s offering a quality product for a premium price and doesn’t need to “guilt” anyone into handing over their money, all while employing people and keeping the economy going.

Mr. Conservative Business Man will also add to his statement that several times a year some non-profit knocks on his door wanting a handout, to which he responds with a nice, fat check. No one loses. People are employed, consumers get what they want – and if they didn’t want it, there’d be no product – all while the non-profit gets to keep its doors open.

The truth is, non-profits could not exist without big business. It just can’t be done. The majority of money given to public charities and social causes, as well as larger efforts like PBS, all comes from big business or charitable trusts created from successful corporate endeavors. To argue that people in corporate America make “too much money,” is also ridiculous, since the majority of U.S. companies are classified as small business, owned by middle-class people.

Several of the arguments against the Facebook quote I noted earlier focused on what one poster called, “a certain political persuasion speaking in absolutes,” and she couldn’t have been more accurate. This entire concept is based on black and white vision with no gray areas of mutual understanding. Fortunately, most people who are successful, either in business or non-profit management, understand that both have to co-exist to survive.

Corporate America has the responsibility to help those less fortunate but to do that they first have to be successful and self-sufficient. Simultaneously, non-profits have a responsibility to balance needs with wants and manage both budgets accordingly. We all have to do the best we can and work together so there will be good jobs, sustainable social programs and a strong economy.

Gery L. Deer is an independent columnist and business contributor to WDTN-TV2’s Living Dayton program. More at http://www.gerydeer.com.