You’re adorable, Phil, and so obliging. Very creative, fleshing out my idea the way you’ve done. We’ve found a nice rhythm together. I’m sure you’ve noticed too, while they dish it out twenty-four/seven, those Trump lovers are emotional, very delicate, and completely unable to cope. They can’t hear themselves, poor darlings. Must be the continuous loop of Tucker, Bongino, Glenn Beck and God knows who on YouTube.
If you’re into Yellowstone TV, as it passes for old-fashioned self-determined American values, you might want to brush up on what’s happened up there in Kalispell, Montana. Nine teen suicides in the sixteen months before November 2021. Residents at each other’s throats over politics. Normal conservatives blame Trump Fever, the “wackadoo righty-rights.” The majority of Republicans hopped on the extremist bandwagon and stayed there. They blame liberals and Californians moving into the state. Always popular, refusing to look at one’s self.
I’m referencing an article from The Washington Post, by Lisa Rein, October, 25, 2021. (Republicans might want to cover their eyes.) “Montanans used to live and let live. Today bitter confrontations dim Big Sky Country.”
In her interview with Tammi Fisher, a conservative, the former mayor of Kalispell, and “a Montanan whose grandfather worked for the Great Northern Railway,” Fisher says “(Right-wing) extremists have stolen everything.” She calls the “ultraconservative politicians” who have taken over the state legislature “criminals and unlikeables,” saying also “Montana’s party-line voting (is) the extinction of a tradition of ‘middles who care who the candidate is as a human being.’”
We aren’t so different here, or special, or immune from mental health issues affecting our young people. Some in the Flathead Valley blame liberals, masks, and mandates for the deaths. Others blame parents for failing to secure an excess of firearms. Tensions are running high. There’ve been ugly confrontations. Started or agitated by the Right, which they blame on the Left. “They’ve hijacked the conversation,” according to Pastor Kevin Geer, of Canvas Church in Kalispell. An ongoing reality of aggression that the Right wants us all to accept as “legitimate political discourse.”
I don’t have the experience to speak adequately to the pain or complexity of teen suicide. Kalispell, is devastated and grieving the loss of their children. They’re “picking up the pieces,” trying to heal and find a way back to living together as a community.
Community Conversations doesn’t address the issues of polarization. They suggest a conversation, and they’d like us to get along their way. They want to talk, from a Republican standpoint, about mandates and getting back to business as usual. I’d like to know what Republicans are going to do about polarization.