Finding Balance in the Era After Parkland
By John Corry
March 29th, 2018, 08:11 pm Eastern
By now, we’ve heard about the horrific shooting in Parkland, FL, on February 14th, 2018, in which seventeen people were killed, and a national debate on guns, brewing for at least decades but most likely centuries, was ushered into a new era. What used to be a relevantly peaceful debate on guns and government (‘relevant’ being the key word there (and one meant to admit the obvious gradual increase of passion regarding that debate since the columbine massacre in 1997–)) has now turned into an all-out ideological brawl with no sense of compromise or, maybe more importantly, sympathy in sight. It used to be civil, albeit barely (most likely, depending on who you were). Now, in the words of something of whom I’m sure, regardless of political affiliation, you would agree with me when I say that he hasn’t exact been the best when it comes to calming people down, or gearing away from division, it’s SAD!
But that’s just the thing, there, isn’t it? ‘Civil’, ‘Sympathy’, ‘Sad’…
After 20+ years of ‘massacres’, ‘domestic terrorists’ and who knows how many years regarding all the potential influencers of those things (economics, racism, in general a wild misunderstanding of basic human psychology), people in America have become tired. Say what you will as far as the reasons for this go; (literally, for research purposes) say: America’s been being taken advantage of by the rest of the world since WWII and needs to figure its own shit out right now, the country has an inherent befuddlement of a deep, subconsious racism running not only through its core but through the core of ‘capitalism’ itself, people’s stupid and they need to fuckin’ read more–doesn’t really matter when we’re talking about passions and how facts should, do, or can influence, interfere, or be interfered with or influenced by emotions or passions, and that’s what’s we’re talking about when emotions are running so high in so many public spaces (like they are in teh gun debate following the Parkland shooting): mainstream media, public debates, ‘professional politics’, and even ‘underground’ media (occasionally). It’s too heated–there are too many people whose opinions seem only to get stronger and more ‘relevant’–factually speaking.
‘Factually-speaking’ (this will come back in a moment)=I’ve come to conclusion recently that humans perceive emotions in the same exact way in which we perceive facts, not to detract from what the obvious differences between those two things are (which is a very important point, and which I'll address in a moment). If I’m grief stricken right now (which is what an emotion is–a feeling understood in the moment–whereas facts exist almost outside of time completely, it currently seems), or if I’m happy or depressed or angry or stressed out over work, that feeling is as much a fact to my perceiving-mind than the fact that 2+2=4, the only difference being that my 'feeling' (or: emotion) has no other criteria for being a 'fact' than my conscious perception of it as something I am feeling, versus a ‘fact’s necessary agreeableness amongst Society as a whole, almost entirely outside of myself (hence why they seem so much like simple Direct Opposites (for more on this, see my The Zombie Ritual_A Second Coming, available here)).
I may be wrong in my thinking on this (please let me know what your thoughts are if you have any!), but it sums up my main point here quite well. Things are getting to the point, for a lot of people, where I think it’s very hard for us to feel comfortable expressing our voices–and more importantly knowing what they are–but this is not necessarily only because of ‘PC culture’ or because of assholes trying to tell me what I can and can’t laugh at, perhaps even least so. It goes much deeper, and straight to the core of one the primary problems currently facing the human intellect: time.
Human beings in general (as opposed to the politicians vying for power or the 'professional philosophers' essentially where we all eventually need to be (critically thinking)) have always considered the universe fairly simply: the earth goes round (or not, but it does something), there is night and day, and there are certain criteria we have for understanding those things, and what happens to us in them, two of the biggest ones of course being facts and emotions. I know this may controversial (INSANELY controversial!!!), but: however much we may wish we didn’t have emotions, we do, and it is far better to accept that and to learn to deal with them (which essentially simply means realizing that you have the potential to be terrible, and that it is those hard emotions which (partly) tell you to stop being that way, and to get your shit together), the same way that there are hard facts to deal with, with that same following process just detailed.
That aforementioned ‘understanding of the criteria we need to understand the world’ has shifted dramatically over the past 100 years, and for several reasons, which it doesn’t much to see: our perception of those things which help us to perceive the world as a whole has been added a wild number of facts and experiences which we’re–each of us–are still trying as hard as we can to catch up on (most of us at least). These would include, amongst more: our knowledge of the capability of human emotion and ingenuity after the two world wars, the implications of strong political or philosophical ideologies or the attachment to such ideologies or processes following Marx’s (justified or not is irrelevant here (or: it happened)) critique of capitalism and the creation of such a ‘rival’ system as communism, and the implications of those processes of perceiving the world following the industrial revolution of the early 1900s and Darwin’s theory of evolution (not to mention physics), and of course the creation of the internet (which isn’t to mention Ozzy Osbourne or the Beatles ;D).
These have all had a huge Individual impact on every single person who’s lived since the start of this ’modern’ world (which I would argue started its current phase with Nietzsche, but obviously probably originated with the Enlightenment), let alone those of us who are alive now. We’ve never had this wealth of information available to us–which of course includes the opportunity to hear other people’s mere opinions in a pseudo-private (it’s actually public) way on institutions like TV and social media–and it’s tough to adjust, especially considering the quickly adjusting technology on all of those things just mentioned. And we are all dealing with this; we all live in-time. I don’t care how smart someone is, or how well they may come off at dealing with it: this is a human problem, and we all have a stake in it, as well as a responsibility to at least attempt to see it, and to care about izt.
And this is where I get back to Parkland. The debate over guns is as old as the invention of the gun itself (by which I really mean that people have always argued over whether or not Intellectual Man is inherently violent, or if there is any logical reason for violence), or at least as old as the second amendment. I really don’t want to get into what I actually think regarding this whole ‘gun debate’ thing, but I do think that, for better or worse, the founding fathers were indeed deep thinkers, and that they and their crazy invention (‘practisized philosophy’ (America) ;D) are worth thinking about and delving into, but: why would they put that in there (the second amendment in the constitution) if they didn’t to a certain extent see this all coming? The founding fathers did have an opinion on this, and it’s pretty clear in the constitution what that opinion is, and their reasonings for it–essentially the ‘right to bear arms against a tyrannical government’ one we hear every day.
Whether or not things change over time, however, is a different argument, but also one I find must still take the form of a rational debate in order to come to functional fruition (I personally do not want anything other than rational and well-thought reason when it comes to political ideology/practical politics (otherwise you end up with exactly what we have now–division)), and that’s just my point: I know things are hard, and I know it seems like nothing will ever get any better, but just because someone disagrees with you over something as important and emotionally relevant as guns doesn’t mean that that person is any less capable of love than you are. Love’s complicated; that’s why it’s ‘love’ and not ‘childish bliss’–
Think about the flow of that paragraph for a second; what is Love 'in-time'? What is reasons 'in-love'? Why am I putting these stupid hyphens in between these words and essentially making them unnecessarily confusing for no other reason than to sound smart? (Being 'in-time' or 'in-love', truly, cannot be put into timely words (or: they transcend time? (check out Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations for more on that one)).)
I’m not going to get into what I think of some of the actual arguments going on right now with this whole gun thing (although this apparent attachment to kids now having the argument is beyond me (weren’t we ALL idiots when it came to politics and critical thinking when we were in high school? (critical thinking being, once again, the key words there)), but maybe I’m wrong (and that’s not a cuck-out, it’s an admission that maybe I just haven’t seen something yet (God forbid somebody recognizes that Thoughts Change)). I was originally going to cover this in a new thing I’m trying out on here where I just write my thoughts down and call them Meditations, because I don’t know how else to prerequisite my idea that Thoughts are inherently ‘centrist’ and bipartisan, and without any political bent or ‘call to revolution’–because that’s really I’m doing here (I think?)–but I couldn't help it. I’m just sick of everyone calling out everyone and not daring to do the one thing that would actually help the situation: calm down–and stop mentioning the shooter’s names in public (also one of the few things that we actually know would curb at least the shooter’s motives for wanting to be a mass shooter in the first place–)
But that’s getting off topic. All I know is that it’s tough to wake up when you think the world is against you, and that, depending on where you sleep, however, you might only be waking up to yourself.
’The world is what we make it,’ –paraphrased All of Philosophy Ever (and this could mean many different things)...
And so begins another complicated issue of What Does This Actually Mean??? And Who Am I? What is the Relation? The POLITICAL AFFILIATION?? What is this? What is That? What is…