By CHERI ROBERTS for Challenging the Rhetoric
We look at ‘extremism’ according to what we have been taught ‘extremism’ to be, but only from the angle of those teaching, even when we don’t realize it’s happening. From the minute we begin taking in information as an infant until the day we die as a geriatric, we are programmed both by intention and by default by the world and those that surround us. This programming is as tangible to our make-up as our DNA, maybe just not quite as unique.
If we were each to write down what we thought extremism was or what an extremist is, chances are the responses wouldn’t be terribly diverse. What is likely over variety is each would be rife with indoctrinated propaganda and surely the rare bird would admit to being an extremist himself.
What IS An Extremist?
Notice in the list of synonyms, ‘activist’ is included. That means, if you have an opinion on the world let alone take action to create change … you, are an ‘extremist’ according to the United States Government. Michael Snyder over at the Economic Collapse Blog has it partially right in his article, “Obama Declares War On ‘Extremism’ – Are You An ‘Extremist’ According To His Definition?”. Unfortunately, even this article about extremism is tinged with unintended extremism via its aggressive language.
For instance, Snyder writes,
“But for elitists such as Barack Obama, the word “extremist” has a much broader meaning. In recent years, it has become a code word for those that do not have an “enlightened” view of the world. “
First, he uses the term ‘elitist’ and then alludes to ‘code words’. This is cloak and dagger shit and when it comes down to it, unnecessary rhetoric that is used for the sole purpose to emphasize an opinion versus reveal any sort of fact. These terms also talk over those not in the know of what exactly an, ‘elitist’ may be and it is they after all that need enlightened.
In addition, for the most part, the article calls out the current administration with little blame placed on administrations that came before it. That too is a means of presenting an extreme view, the ever dividing left right offering … still. I could pick apart several portions of an otherwise good article, but I think I made my point.
Even this quiz asking if you are an extremist is extremist in its bias.
Instead of recognizing we have a problem, we pump ourselves — and other’s bank accounts, up.
Where Is Extremism?
Extremism is everywhere. You are an extremist. I am an extremist. Given the right issue, we are all extremists in one way or another. The problem with extremism however, is the arrogance and elitist [I used it too!] attitude that often comes from strongly believing one thing over another. Once we acquire that sort of contempt for another’s views or ideas all manners are out of the window.
Somewhere along the line we began to believe we are entitled to speak our minds in any way we please and I guess that’s true according to our Constitution. It is our ‘God given right’ after all. It isn’t our rights in question, what is in question is the heart of humanity and whether or not its cadence is little more than a reflection of the endless drums of war.
The White House says they are going to crack down on extremism, especially in the media … will they? How will that be accomplished and will the battle be one of Constitutional rights or one between what is right and what is wrong?
France’s terrorist attack at the media offices for satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo is a good example of extremism, but I am not talking about the extremism they portray in their cartoons, but instead the extremism behind the creation of such cartoons. It takes an extreme opinion to come up with each and every one and yet, for some reason, that sort of extremism … is OK. Why? Because it is directed at an entire population we have been indoctrinated to believe is our enemy? Every joke and cartoon lands on an audience and the ones each resonates with is more apt to agree with the satire in question only further confirming their bias; this time through entertainment which we know is hugely influential. especially when you lather, rinse, repeat …
How Are We Indoctrinated?
No other example is more profound than that of the Iraq war. Violence, particularly, is sold daily in America.
It’s marketing 101. If you have ever had any sort of sales or marketing job you know that you have to do or say the same things over and over in order to ingrain yourself with your prospect. the same holds true for how we are raised. Our upbringings, minus any media influence, is an indoctrination in and of itself. Add media and the corporate world as a whole and you have a trifecta of digestible propaganda served up 24/7 … and most are none the wiser.
The way we were raised is no excuse for who we are as adults so take upbringing itself aside for a moment; there are countless studies about media consumption that show people gravitate to those things that are already a fundamental part of their mentality whether right or wrong. There is no longer a learning curve. This isn’t just about companies selling you a product, this is about your Govt. and media selling you a lifestyle.
The further we pull back from caring about one another as individuals who equally matter the further from humanity and a solution to those things that ail us.
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