I have been battling my old friend disillusionment of late. This latest job change has contributed, no doubt, as I watch the university turn into a cash machine and watch the community college continue to be a pool of mediocrity and cronyism.
I am not naive, and this is not the first time I have become disillusioned by an institution or group. In grad school, one of my friends referred to me as an incredibly cynical idealist. Perhaps. No doubt, I have lost respect for a lot of institutions that I used to have at least some respect for. And no doubt that one of the big ones was when the church of my youth openly cheered torturing individuals. Hard to wrap my mind around the contrast of "don't you dare tell me I can't say 'Merry Christmas'" and "it's ok to torture people because we are afraid of another 9-11."
Those church people, I believe, are largely uninformed. Discussions with many torture defenders reveals that, I would argue. That doesn't completely let them off the hook, mind you, but it certainly mitigates their approach. Same goes for my conservative friends who continue to vote for Republicans even when they know that vote will cause actual harm to actual people. In most cases, I think they believe (or want to believe) that my concerns are inflated and either the harm will not occur or it will not be nearly as bad as I predict.
But make no mistake, one of the things darkening my mood is the pure malevolence of the people they vote for. I know no other way to explain Tea Partiers openly mocking disabled people or Republicans chanting to repeal health insurance for people with pre-existing conditions. That is malevolent, and the fact that many of them wave Bibles while doing so surely does not help.
And speaking of that, here we combine Republican and Christian malevolence with David Barton and Kenneth Copeland saying that PTSD isn't Biblical. I understand the tribalism aspect, mind you, but there is something completely fucked up about some minister telling a soldier they should not be troubled by seeing people die--either by their hand or someone else's--and guilty or innocent. What kind of arrogant evil person would tell soldiers that they should not feel bad about the death of others?
David Barton, that is who. Much loved in Christian conservative circles for his faux history, and devoid of an ounce of humanity or awareness.