Living in the age of the political double-standard

Living in the age of the political double-standard

The partisan political divide is growing as the November midterm elections approach.

Emotions are on edge. Democrats are hoping for a big blue wave of progressives coming to the polls to wash away Republican control of the House, and possibly even the Senate.

President Trump has talked of the red wave firmly establishing his party’s control of Congress for another two years and with the appointment of Brett Kavanaugh, 5-4 control of the Supreme Court.

There is a different perspective to judge the events coming out of the other Washington. Read on.

Trump supporters are upset because the liberal media is constantly harassing President Trump about a host of things. I agree that the liberal media has become generally rabid and hateful, looking for every tweet and mistake and hoping that Trump is impeached after the new Congressional session in January if the Democrats win the House in November.

The Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearings have just turned uglier. It’s clear that the Democrats are out to destroy his reputation and his confirmation to the Supreme Court. They may succeed. They found a possible high school crime that may sink his candidacy. Much of Democratic anger is over Obama’s pick, Merrick Garland, being rejected and fear that a lot of liberal perspectives are potentially going to be ignored for the next 20-30 years in Supreme Court decisions.

Trump has done some things that I agree are necessary. However, I can’t stand the way he communicates. But if you are a Trump supporter, you are willing to overlook his obnoxious personality because of all the good he has done for those who support him: Mainly the religious right and working class whites. He is making America great again as he promised—for them.

Am I right so far, Trump supporters?

I’m not going to get in a big argument about these issues. I do have two comments: Trump supporters, were you as upset when a conservative Congress and media went after President Obama for eight years, or did you largely agree with them? You weren’t bothered by all the nasty things they were attacking him for (not balancing the budget and apologizing for America’s past sins, to name two)? How come? Is it okay for someone to attack a sitting president, Obama, when you agree with the attacks, and not okay to attack a different sitting president when you agree with his views, if not his communication style?

For those of you who have used the “What aboutisms?” where Obama lied about being able to keep your own doctor, is it possible that that wasn’t really a lie, but an honest mistake? Also, is that the best you can do? If that is the worst lie Obama uttered, is it equivalent to all the lies Trump has uttered with his flipflopping on issues almost daily? Remember a time in the past when flipflopping won issues was evil, but now it’s okay?

There is another perspective to judge issues in Washington D.C. It’s called doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. Is that mindset demonstrated by the liberals when dealing with Trump? I’d say no. Did President Trump use perspective when he separated illegal immigrant parents from their families? Does he use it when he attacks the character or the characteristics of a person while at the same time being hypersensitive to criticism of himself?

Are we living in an age of the double standard? We can see the sins, cynicism, and hypocrisy of the other side but we are blind to the failings, distortions, and perspectives of our side.

How would this partisan divide be different if both sides asked, “Am I doing to others what I want others to do to me?” before launching into attacks on the other side?

Of course, that’s not going to happen any time soon in Washington D.C. But the Constitution tells us that “We the people” rule this nation, not the elites in the nation’s capital. If enough people rise up and vote, positive change can occur. Election ballots will be arriving in the mail in about five weeks. You have the power if you will only take it up.


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Dr. Jayendrina Singha Ray’s research interests include postcolonial studies, spatial literary studies, British literature, and rhetoric and composition. Prior to teaching in the U.S., she worked as an editor with Routledge and taught English at colleges in India. She is a resident of Kirkland.
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