Anger Flows Only Downward

Ed from ginandtacos on We are the 53%:

On the most basic level, this reflects a convincing victory for conservatism in the war for hearts and minds. We might realize that those Occupy Wall Street folks are right, but we’re still more likely to be hostile than sympathetic. Why? Take a look at any of the “We are the 53%” crap and you’ll see. It’s a bunch of people with a consistent message: My life blows, so yours should too. I work two jobs, so I resent people who want to work one. I am grateful for the crumbs that fall to me in this system, so people who complain about it are assholes. I quietly and obediently accept whatever the system does to me, so why don’t you?

It takes a special kind of self loathing to generate a reaction like this. Fortunately Americans have that in spades. So many of us have completely given up, surrendered, and chosen that life of quiet desperation that it’s unsurprising when more anger is targeted at people who stray from the flock than at more appropriate targets. We’re content to direct our anger at one another because we’ve been convinced that change is impossible and encouraged to blame ourselves for whatever problems we have. The biggest obstacle confronting social and political movements is neither social nor political, but psychological. The first and most difficult step is to silence the voice in people’s heads that whispers, “Nothing will change, so stay home, keep quiet, and obey” when they see a few villagers taking to the streets with torches.

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