The weaponization of fear has become the new normal, with both sides of a hidden war embracing a deadly virus as their flag. The left, the right, the conservatives, the progressives, QAnon and Antifa have more in common than dissension. As long as they are stoking the flames of their animosity, they are far too busy to question why they are fighting.
The distrust of the media has created an atmosphere where the line between fact and fiction is blurred. Opinion has become the gospel, with pundits as clergy, as each side attempts to out-talk the other. Fox News’ host Laura Ingraham clapped her hands when she reported that General Mark Milley had COVID. CNN is still reporting on the previous president, seemingly unaware that a new one was elected. There is no longer a middle ground for them to attain. The middle ground was forced to pick sides in order to survive. Our society uses the soundbites heard on cable news channels as munitions against our neighbors. We share them on social media to validate the accuracy of our rightness while a virus continues its global rampage.
The polarization of our political parties has isolated the country to the point that politicians are calling for a divorce between the red and blue states. Our political leaders acted as tyrants, making a big production of rules which they ignored, but expected the commoners to follow. Our leaders make a mockery of the healthcare system by shunning masks and fining those who don’t wear them. Congress has become our favorite reality show, complete with villains and heroes.
As quickly as the virus spread, so did the message of personal guilt. If you didn’t wear the right mask, or get the right vaccine, and subsequent boosters, then it is absolutely your fault that a cancer patient died of the coronavirus three states away. If you don’t inject yourself, at least three times with a vaccine that doesn’t prevent the virus and may not work against any future variants, then you are personally responsible for the death of the 800,000 lives lost to COVID.
Who do you trust if you can’t trust the media? Can you trust a government that speaks out of both sides of its mouth? When social media has become our primary source of information, we didn’t just lose the fight for freedom. We tossed it away like yesterday’s garbage while wearing our political team colors on our heads and covering our hearts. How much easier we have become to control while our focus is on what our neighbors think.
We are better than this. We cannot allow the media, the politicians, or a virus to make us forget that we are humans first. It’s time to remember that we are blessed to call ourselves Americans. If we unplugged our phones and turned off the internet, perhaps we could find the salvation of our country.
Thank you for reading.