November 22, 2016
Day 14, two weeks in, and while teetering on the brink, the republic remarkably stands.
An image of an alt-right meeting, the crowd to its feet, chanting, “Hail Trump! Hail our people! Hail our victory!”, arms raised in that old school German salute is now indelibly engraved onto my imagination. Thanks Trump.
But I once again digress, as the title suggests, today I want to think about name-calling.
For most of my life name-calling was a cruel tactic used primarily in grade school. A childish attempt to weaponize words, used against people who were “different”, name-calling was really popular on the playground.
Of course, when we achieved adulthood, most of us gave up our childish conflict tactics in favor of more civil ways to disagree. We, mostly, recognize that name-calling is meant to hurt or, at least, to diminish – not to resolve. Typically, adults who used name-calling were disregarded in serious discussions, because their tactics were childish. (And because they were obnoxious.)
Well, not so much anymore. The Donald barked school yard names throughout his campaign – Little Marco, Crooked Hillary, Lyin’ Ted just to mention a few. And the Donald won. We can expect others to copy this winning tactic. So, expect more. Thanks Donald.
One of the more interesting names brought to us by the alt-right is the poetic term libtard. I suppose I find it interesting because it is aimed at me and people like me. The word is, apparently, a combination of the noun liberal (a word they had been demonizing for decades) and a pejorative usage of the verb retard used to refer to people with mental disabilities. So, they managed to offend progressives and disabled people all at once. Such clever people.
And the word itself! It has a such an ugly sound to it. Libtard, ugh! I can only assume that a sound so gross is onomatopoeia with the alt-right soul.
I’d like to wrap up by admitting I have been doing some name-calling myself in this very article. Three times I used the term alt-right (now four) and admit the term unfairly characterizes some people. Clearly, they deserve to identified more accurately – as Nazis
That’s all I got today. Take care of yourselves and each other,