Get our newsletters

Chatterbox: Heading upward via compassion


We’re often aware of empathy; that’s the emotion most of us feel on someone else’s behalf.

Some news channels, recently, have been trying to tagline empathy as a negative trait. They belittle people who are compassionate for certain others, trying to attach empathy to weakness. It’s a strange time when compassion is painted as a negative characteristic, and history has taught us that any nation, at any time, without it, is a dark and dangerous place.

None of us can pinpoint the exact moment when our modern news delivery system went ’round that bend. We just know too much of it has. Some private network slants have slowly but successfully derailed many vulnerable Americans. Even individuals working to solidify a more perfect union are surreptitiously being knocked off track by the unregulated power of unreasonable wealth.

We were never supposed to become an aristocracy to any degree. Of course, we should remember the silent controls that have always protected the privileged class even here in the U.S. Before the Revolution, British aristocrats governed the new colonies and small settlements to their own gain. After we threw off crown rule, maintaining class separation became more covert. Ambiguous rights and delayed regulations created unspoken hurdles for many who were perceived as beneath the wealthy privileged. Whether we accept it as truth or not, much of the system remains rigged – without empathy – today, through careful whispers, riders and laws that display equitable justice with one hand, whilst jerry-rigging it with the other.

In example, we can examine our law entitling every child the privilege of a free public education. It sounds oh so very democratic. If we look into the tent, however, we see that many public schools are supported – some up to nearly half - by local property taxes. Therein lies the rub.

These taxes can be cut, as we often see, by local vote. Better neighborhoods have more funds for quality education and graduate more students who can afford better colleges. Impoverished areas can’t compete. They can’t maintain quality buildings, the best equipment, or the sufficient salaries that schools in better neighborhoods can. See? That’s how that imbalance was purposely allowed to sneak in through the bathroom window, and that’s how we rig the imbalanced system we were never supposed to have; education is only one example.

Only legislation can alter the imbalances America must alter if we’re ever going to fully function to the betterment of everyone, and only the betterment of everyone will bring this nation to its fullest potential. Of course, only the true desire for these things will foster that outcome and only a true empathy for all others will eliminate those silent inequalities that hinder certain factions of our population. When we allow all our people to contribute all their qualities freely, all the power of our country will be put into a nationally beneficial, progressive motion.

Without that, we will continue to be a stunted people, making only conditional progress in a feigned democracy. Without that, America continues to be stymied by our hypocritical prejudice, unable to realize its maximum greatness, unable to bring all possibilities and creativity to the American table.

We must know what our real goals are and if any prejudice, personal opinion, or goal which is self-serving is worth the cost of the advancement and strength of America as a world nation.

Some of America’s privately owned media have become too successful at selling their personal agenda and propaganda. They’ve managed to recruit too much support from too many misinformed supporters. Propagating fudged facts that actually hinder the progress of the country they think, or pretend, they’re preserving, none will admit what they actually fear: that true equality will risk advantages they want for themselves exclusively.

We can only call America a free nation and a real democracy if we emancipate all our people with empathy, truth and unilateral justice, and extend opportunities that are truly equal, rather than delivering deception, delays, and empty promises.

Empathy isn’t only the perk of these compassions but it is an essential part of the only route to them. When the talking heads snicker “Snowflake” about any moment of such empathy, compassion, or just plain equity, it’s an affront to all, including those who see them as their gurus.

We should be wary of all enemies of democracy who wrap themselves in our nation’s flag. We must also be willing to admit that we are either for America as a true democracy, or we just aren’t.