Blogging / Family / Politics

My brother-in-law: Journey to the no cable club.

Just before 2012, My brother-in-law was talking about a bunker and enough provisions stored up for his family of three to live off of for a couple months. he bought a generator and some other things to help them survive the end of the world. He was always talking about conspiracy and the way the world was all going to hell in a million different ways. He’d caution us about scams that were becoming ‘widespread’ and warn us not to eat tomatoes sometimes. He would constantly pitch the idea that our family, his, and our parents could buy many acres together and start a farm to make sure we’d be okay with the way things are going. In fact, he told me that the country was going to fall apart and become a dictatorship or communist country or just cease to exist when President Obama was elected. It’s not that he’s hyper-politcal, it’s that he didn’t expect us to be able to survive the WW3 he thought for sure was imminent.

Over New Years we all got together like we do every year around this time. He was telling my uncle that he was really peaceful and that he felt like WW3 could break out, he wouldn’t even know. He told him that there was so much that he used to worry about that just doesn’t matter. He feels liberated and much more calm. I came in on the tail end of the conversation, and hadn’t heard why the big changes. When he told me it was because they cut the cable off, I was floored. How awesome.

On the flip side, I was watching Judge Judy with my mother-in-law and when I questioned some of the things that Judge Judy was saying she told me that Judge Judy wouldn’t say it unless it were true and that she believes her. “Goodness,” I said, “you’re watching tv here. You simply can’t believe everything you hear, surely you know that?” She shook her head and said that she liked Judge Judy. This brings me to something else that I find troubling. In the wake of the whole Duck Dynasty ridiculousness, I was talking with a fan who vehemently argued that he was only human. Of course he’s only human I thought, that’s precisely why he should simply own up to his mistakes and apologize. Everyone who’s human makes mistakes. But for some reason when people get attached to a particular pundit or representative for a perceived cause, they are excused of every wrong doing as if they don’t have to be held accountable. What is it about television personalities that bring this out?

Though I don’t have cable, I still watch a fair amount of television. And every bit I watch that includes ‘facts,’ I question. I have fact checked Jon Stewart and Michael Moore more times than any of the Right wing pundits. This is mostly because I want to listen to truthful people and like truthful people and partly because when the rhetoric turns negative and divisive instead of constructive, I turn it off. Besides, I want to protect the integrity of people I look up to for news. I do that by holding them accountable when they do wrong. Why hasn’t the majority Right caught up on this idea??

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