Today is a historical day. Today the United States of America and her allies can officially celebrate the taking of a man who viciously attacked our country, celebrated his role in that destruction and had successfully eluded our country, our soldiers, our allies and our intelligence mechanisms for almost ten years. Today, I say THANK YOU again to all of those men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice defending the most amazing country in this world. I say THANK YOU to all of those men and women who have committed their time to securing this free and sovereign nation. Today, I say THANK YOU to the families of military and intelligence personnel. It is because of YOUR unwavering support and dedication to this amazing nation that we can stand strong and united against a foreign enemy. We stand taller today. We stand prouder today. We stand more united in our mission to secure our borders, or nation and our people against all enemies both foreign and domestic. This is a day of jubilation and I refuse to let anybody take that from me.
However, somebody did try to take it from me. Somebody tried to turn a simple statement of mine into a dramatic social media spectacle. I do not take things like that lightly. I also do not take people like her lightly and I will tell you why. She is politically polarized. My simple statement about giving all credit to our servicemen and women and not giving it to Obama was stretched into me being an ultra-conservative who cannot see past my GOP affiliation. Really? ARE YOU SERIOUS? Did I just read that right? I could not believe it. I was perplexed and angered because this person does not know me. She was a casual acquaintance that I happened upon during a part of my life where nothing really mattered except re-finding my path in life. More importantly she is collecting information about me via Facebook. Again, is this really happening? She thinks I am an ultra conservative because I do not like some of Obama’s policy & his inadequate implementation of policy. How can she know my political views just because I do not like one politician? It is preposterous!
Of course I fired back because that it what I do. All of my years in political classes, security classes and legal classes equipped me with a concrete will to defend myself no matter what. I kindly informed her she did not know me, she did not know my political affiliation and how could she? She was stealing random tidbits of information from my facebook page and making it into a story to fuel her already polarized liberal views. I despise actions and verbiage like that! There is no getting through to somebody so far gone that a simple comment about crediting our troops suddenly sees it as a platform to spew left or right wing party politics without understanding how arrogant and foolish they look. I was unimpressed. I was uncomfortable. And, I felt embarrassed for her; just like I feel embarrassed for every other polarized person. Where does somebody get off trying to tell me what I believe? To tell me what my motivations and intentions are? Nobody, nobody tells me who I am or what I believe, especially somebody who does not know me. Oh no, I do not take people like that lightly. And, neither should any of you!
You know the age old saying, “When you assume, you only make an ass out of you and me?” Well I always understood that statement on the surface, but I never completely understood how I could be an ass when somebody else is making the assumptions. Today it hit me. It was a bit of an AH-HA moment after all of these years. Of course I begin to look like a fool because I am actually taking precious time away from my life to argue with somebody who is not equipped with the requisite facts to legitimize this attack. It dawned on me in the wee hours of the morning that this whole conversation was foolish and was a waste of my time. At the end of the day this person knows NOTHING about me. I love the United States of America. I love my Soldier with every ounce of my heart! I am proud that he fought against terrorism and defended this nation. I respect George Bush for making a difficult decision to take our men and women into two countries to find Osama bin Laden and quell terrorism and I am thankful that Obama told our Special Forces to act on their intelligence so they could take the target.
Many of us encounter people like this in daily life. Some of us are at a junction in life where you may have to decide to walk away from superficial scrutiny like I encountered this morning. This is my advice – think about who this person is to you in your life. Is this person special? Is this personal meaningful? Has this person impacted my life in an acceptable way? Is this person pushing me to think harder, analyze better and understand the world outside of the box? If you can answer in the affirmative then talk with this person and tell them how they are making you feel. For instance, Nick, my boyfriend, has the tendency to be a polarized conservative. I don’t like this about him. However, he pushes me to think, to research, and to analyze. He helps to make my opinion well rounded, more substantiated and less polarized. How amazing is that? His ultra conservative tendencies help balance my understanding of the grey matter that exists between the bleeding heart liberal end and the off - the - scale GOP end. To me, that is irreplaceable. Therefore, he gets to stay in my life.
However, even if you answer in the affirmative it is important to know that your feelings of frustration and anxiety or anger are valid. When somebody is so polarized that it is impossible for them to see the other side [and you’re not like that] it may make your blood boil. It is okay to feel that way, but do not bottle it up because at some point it will come out in a not so constructive manner. Talk to those types of people that matter to you in life and tell them how you feel about their polarized views. More often than not, if they are somebody who respects you, encourages you and loves you, they will listen to you like you listen to them. And they may begin to widen their perspective. If they do not, who cares? That just means you will never run out of things to talk about.
Even though there are people who involve themselves in constructive debates there are, nevertheless, those people who do not. If you consider the questions above and you find yourself answering with negatives then you should consider the source from which this information is coming. Many people who are politically polarized are disrespectful and insulting because they are ill equipped with knowledge, stamina and class. When a statement turns into political banter and accusations, ask yourself if the person spewing the skewed ideas is somebody who is constructively supporting you in life. Ask yourself, “What does this person bring to my life?” More importantly ask yourself, “Where is this person getting his or her information [particularly about you]?” If you have a difficult time answering or know this person does not have specific and valid information straight from your mouth, then I think you might want to make the decision to cut the fat from your life.
What I have learned in life is that people who do not have constructive criticism and those people who believe they know you based on random information on social media sites really have less self-esteem, less of a life and tons of insecurity, which is why they are trying to transition that negativity onto you. I learned a long time ago not to take people like this seriously. In fact, I usually laugh out loud when somebody attacks me without knowing me. I think it’s marvelous. It becomes an analytical process for me. People never cease to amaze me. However, it took a very long time for me to understand that people who push their absurd views on me lack a certain esteem to peacefully coexist with people who believe beyond what they believe.
Like most things in life, you must find the balance with politics and politically polarized people in your life. It is not easy because along with religion, politics seems to swell up from the underbelly of society and is dispersed in extreme ways. That is because so many people believe so enthusiastically in what they deem to be important. I urge you to walk away from foolish people who make only assumptions about you and use those assumptions to expound an argument against you. It is not worth it. However, I advocate constructive criticism, differing opinions and valid arguments based on substantiated evidence and factual knowledge. Decide what people are best for your life. Laugh out loud when those people who do not build you up with constructive criticism attempt to invalidate your opinion; laughing is a great mechanism to get you through and may even diffuse the situation!
So let me get back to our wonderful military and this wonderful country! I do not care if you are liberal, conservative, unknown, not understood, or independent this is a great day to celebrate being an American. Go – talk to your friends, your colleagues, thank a soldier, do whatever it is you have to do to support this country and our special forces team that when in there and took the target! This is a day in history that should not be taken lightly and it should NOT be overshadowed by politics. This is not a political victory, but this is a victory for our country, our citizens, our soldiers, our allies and all of those in the intelligence community. If you have polarized and non informed people in your life forget about them right now. Remember these days! Be proud of these days! Some people may argue that all this talk only expands upon the hatred Osama Bin Laden expounded toward the United States and her allies. That’s ridiculous. Talking about the end of that symbolic reign should unify us. This is no time to retreat. We have to be united in our resolve to protect this nation and continue with our other missions.
Until Next Time,