Our Twilight Zone of politics and social interaction

Posted at 12:53 AM, Nov 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-10 00:53:55-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- We've entered another dimension - where politics, truth and social interaction stretch the boundaries of the imagination.

We have entered the twilight zone . . .

My first signpost on this journey: a visit with Donald Trump here as he readied to run for president. I kidded him about the taller and more handsome candidate winning most of the time.

Who could imagine how it would turn out?

The tweeter-in-chief certainly benefited from the crazy, frothy and widening divide in this country between liberals and conservatives.

And he has certainly polarized us further.

Another signpost on this journey through the twilight zone: a recent visit with Virginia Del. Bob Marshall (R-13th District) after his proposed "bathroom bill" restricting transgender usage.

"Homophobe, transphobe, phobe-a-phobe," he told me, listing the names he is called. "I'm in the minority of those who are willing to speak out because frankly, I don't care when people call me names."

But he likely cared when a transgendered member of self-described "drunk metal" band Cab Ride Home (my old punk metal band played with them at least once) beat Marshall's long-incumbent pants off.

That victor, Danica Roem, joins a host of other Democrat longshots who stunned not only their Republican opponents but every political analyst in the land. (It was a smaller but mirror-image version of the Republicans stunning sweep last year that political experts missed badly.)

"This election has to prove nationwide that discrimination is a disqualifier," Roem said during her victory celebration.

As one of the swarm of highly motivated Democrat voters told the Washington Post, she would've voted for Dr. Seuss or the Berenstain Bears if they were a Democrat.

Consider Delegate Monoli Loupassi (R-68th District), a respected incumbent here with deep roots in the city. Even though he vastly outspent his inexperienced Democrat opponent, nurse Dawn Adams beat him, becoming the first open lesbian in the Virginia House.

And so the rigid divisions go on the social front but amplified tragically. Antifa versus the Alt-Right. Facebook and Twitter trolling in which ideological opponents attempt to commit cyber homicide on one other.

Long-respected media outlets stoop to agenda-based reporting as a divided nation seeks verification and support for their opposing and increasingly intolerant ideological views.

Anyone and everyone can be immediately tried and convicted in the court of social media on scant or wrong information.

There is no central river of truth and fairness for everyone to fish from, just a widening and empty rift of distrust and anger and absolute certainty that our views are the right ones!

Our cultural pendulum swings wildly, dangerously, and no one knows where this is heading.

So just when you're happy with the way things are going, or when you're really angry about them, don't forget how quickly things will change . . . in the twilight zone.



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