Men are disturbed, not by things, but by the principles and notions which they form concerning things.
Epictetus – Written 135 A.C.E.
The negative association of two unlike issues creates a state of fear in politics. Some Examples follow:
From the right:
Obama will destroy America
Unions are comprised of evil thugs
The US is bankrupt
Social Security will be gone before I retire.
Gay marriage will destroy families
Communism is anti-Christian
From the left:
Large Corporations are evil
Eating meat is murder
Man made pollution will destroy the earth, and soon
Guns are killing our youth and are a scourge on society
Religions are a force for evil
Republicans are racist
For each and every issue on these lists, we can point out the good that they do. It is the characterization of each item, and the belief in that characterization that is disturbing.
The alternate view from the left:
Obama isn’t really that different from other presidents.
Unions are made up of regular people like our nice neighbors across the street.
The US has always been in debt and no more so today than in the past.
Social Security needs to be tweaked as demographics change, but is solvent.
Gay couples already live together in peace and harmony, with or without a legal license.
Many Christian sects tried to live in communes during the 19th century.
The alternate view from the right:
Corporations provide value to consumers and drive our prosperity
Animals are part of our diet; it is natural to eat meat.
Global Climate change has been occurred the whole life of the planet, it is no big deal
Most gun owners never hurt anybody
Religions have been at the source of most of the good humans have done
Republicans encompass as wide a range of people as any other group.