Hit And Run

political arguments

“…truth will come
to light; murder cannot be hid long….” — Act II, Scene ii, The Merchant of Venice

Police chases are a top cause of auto accidents, but at least law enforcement officials don’t leave the scene of horror on the road. That’s not to excuse cops for what I personally consider — most of the time — totally unnecessary pursuits which endanger the lives of thousands annually. A few years back the number of hit and runs racked up record statistics, and those abominations deserve our attention and renewed resolve to deal with the growing problem.

But here I’m not concerned with either of the phenomena touched upon above. The hit and run I want to address is of a far different nature, a completely different animal than what I’ve spotlighted. I’m interested in addressing how activists — and “engaged” and “informed” citizens in general — throw their opinion at one, and then run away… not allowing for argument, closing off obligatory back and forth almost from the start.

It used to be obligatory for someone to substantiate what they had to proclaim, mandatory for people with positions to not only offer up evidence, but to hang around long enough for some kind of in-depth, informal debate. These days, though, all that’s very much out-of-fashion, and once someone declares that this or that is so, anyone not in the know (as they see it) can stuff their opposing opinion where the sun doesn’t shine.

This is a HUGE problem in activist circles; it’s getting worse by the day.

As I’ve written many times before, and stressed at various podiums incessantly over the years, it is essential that people fighting the good fight not take flight immediately after expressing themselves. That there be humility in the air and a sincere eagerness for hearing other angles on a given issue, tactic or strategy.

That requires that leisurely time be set aside, and that folks get off of whatever treadmill they’re on as they cross activist paths with others… long enough to not be guilty of a hit and run.

When well-meaning citizens bump heads, they need to pull over for a bit and exchange all the details required leisurely and respectfully… to do justice to a meeting of minds.

Otherwise, the so-called Left will remain as fragmented as it is today. And no one will be guilty… for the time being. It is murderous what activists on the run are doing.

Rachel Olivia O’Connor is a member of the Oxman Collective, and can be reached at [email protected].


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