This week the letter for the ABC Wednesday Meme is Z. Z is for Zealot. According to the dictionary, a zealot is a person who has very strong feelings about something (such as religion or politics) and who wants other people to have those feelings.
The online world seems to be full of zealots. I really wonder if anyone's mind has ever been changed by hateful vitriol that they read on someones Facebook feed.
I did not write the following words, but I fully agree with them. I would love to give the original writer credit, but I don't know the source.
Dear Friends, Family, and Anyone Else I Know;
As we all know, there is a rather major election happening this year. I
know, no matter how loud or quiet you are, you probably (definitely)
have opinions. You probably lean more toward one political party than
the other, more toward one candidate than the other, more toward
one side than the other, just as I do. You have strongly held beliefs
about certain issues, just as I do. One of the great things about living
in this country is our ability–and right–to hold and VOTE our political
conscience, for the things and people we believe in.
That being said.
As the election gets nearer, and the tempers get shorter, and the mud
gets fling-ier, I want you to remember some things, please:
When you post on Facebook that someone is “Too stupid to breathe…” if they vote for X candidate–you could be talking about me.
When you write in your email that someone who votes for Y candidate is “UnAmerican”–you could be talking about me.
When you say that someone who believes that Z candidate has better
policies should “be taken out back and shot”–you could be talking about
When you say that you hope everyone who votes for XYZ
candidate “is rounded up” before the election–you could be talking about
When you say/post/share ugly words, thoughts or pictures
about people on the other side to support your political position–you
could be talking about ME.
About ME, or someone like me that
you know. Not just a random “them.” But someone you like, or love.
Someone you may have known your whole life. Someone you may think is
intelligent, articulate, well-spoken. Someone you may think is caring,
There is a PERSON behind the things you are
saying. When you say that all liberals, or all conservatives…when you
say that all Democrats or all Republicans…when you say that ALL of any
group is/says/does/thinks/behaves/believes/hates/loves/etc., you are
saying that about real people. Honest to goodness, flesh and blood
people. Not just ideologies. Not just platforms. Not just issues. Not
just politicians. Your friends. Your family. Your neighbors. Your
Please, by all means, believe what you believe. Vote
the way you want to vote. Engage in civil discussion about issues and
platforms, if you want to. Advocate strongly for why you think what you
think. Use reason to explain your position. These things? These make us
better citizens, make us a better part of the political process. But
when you start throwing those ugly words out, when you start sharing
those ugly graphics, and those hateful quotes, and you point your finger
at “THOSE PEOPLE” just remember…you could be talking about me. Someone
you know. Someone you call friend, family, coworker.
that doesn't matter to you. Maybe it doesn't matter that you’re saying
I’m stupid, unAmerican, deserve to be kicked out of the country, deserve
to die, don’t have any compassion, don’t care about my fellow citizens,
or am a moron. Maybe it doesn't bother you because you believe SO
strongly that ALL people who believe opposite of you are SO wrong that
you’re willing to forget the people behind those beliefs, that they are
more than just their political opinions, more than just where they fall
on an issue or what candidate they want to vote for.
But to me
it does. Because when this political season is over, and the races have
been decided, the non-stop political nonsense will die back down to a
low boil. But you and I? We’ll still know each other. And I’ll know what
you really think…of me.
Click on the photo above to purchase my book, The Little Things. $3.58 for the paperback and $0.99 for the kindle version
I was born in 1956 in Madison, Tennessee, while my parents were attending Madison College. I grew up along the Front Range in Colorado, attending schools in Longmont, Brighton, Boulder and Loveland, Colorado. Two years after graduating from Campion Academy, I married my sweetheart, Regina. We lived in Loveland, Colorado for six years before moving to Mena in western Arkansas.
I love the people of Mena and the friendly easy going way of life here. I have owned and operated my own business since moving to Mena. I enjoy the natural beauty of western Arkansas and being out of doors.
My newspaper column in The Mena Star, An Arkie’s Faith, premiered on January 7, 2016. In March 2017, I published my first book, titled An Arkie's Faith, using articles from the column.