Political Tribalism in America Reaching Its Height

More than half of white Americans believe that they have already replaced blacks as the main victims of discrimination in this country according to a 2012 study.

This is the first time in the history of America where white Americans are being viewed as the minority in their country. But this demographic shift has made just a slight impact to allay minority concerns about discrimination.

A significant number of black Americans are not that optimistic about the necessary changes to provide them with equal rights. Furthermore, hate crimes have increased astoundingly in the wake of  the election last 2016.

When certain groups feel oppressed, they become more insular and defensive. This brings forth tribalism.

Today, in America, almost all ethnicities and religious groups feel this way. From liberals to conservatives – everyone feels threatened and bullied. Whites and blacks, Latinos and Asians, men and women, Christians, Jews, and Muslims, straight people and gay people – no one is exempted; not even those in home health agencies in west palm beach.

These assumptions combined with recorded documents of inequality are the reasons why we are seeing identity politics. With this, America is caught up in a dangerous situation. No one stands up for America without identity politics and this country isn’t built on this.

Former U.S. president Barack Obama made a speech in 2004 that there is no black America and white America. There is no Latino America and Asian America but rather, there is a United States of America.

After a decade and a half, the current America is far from Obama’s America.

White male Protestants dominated America for a long time in history. Most of the time, they are violent and this legacy still continues.  The ongoing racial inequality has left many citizens disappointed with the hopes of racial progress during Obama’s believed to be end of racial-discrimination presidency.  

Most citizens of the United States want to believe in change.  Learning from the cruel events in history, there is a hope for progress. That differences in beliefs are set aside and that there is a building acceptance, even at the notion that most white people have turned into a new leaf for equality.

With the rise of identity politics, subdivision of several proliferating groups relentlessly demanding recognition goes along with it.


Then vs. Now

Read the news on the Internet. Turn on the nightly news on the television. Listen to talk radio. People make it seem like politics is swerving out of control. They paint pictures of a loose cannon president, a Congress which never gets anything, and scandals that rock individual members in government. But, in reality, nothing has changed. As a matter of fact, things are arguably better now than they were decades or hundreds of years ago.

We shouldn’t take what we have for granted. Perhaps people should be reminded that, only 100 years ago, women did not even have the right to vote yet. African Americans did not share the same rights as other citizens 70 years ago. Our good friends at Handyman Pompano Beach believe this country was in a literal Civil War 150 years ago. The fact that some people would refer to the current political climate as a type of civil war is laughable. If people do die due to some extremist(s), it will only be a few. The Civil War claimed over 600,000 lives. That’s what a real war looks like. Any bickering in today’s political climate is child’s play. It doesn’t matter how heated a debate gets.

As long as bullets aren’t firing, people should sit back and realize words are just words. They can turn off the television. They can stop reading political news on the Internet. And they can play some music on the radio instead of listening to political talk shows. History has shown that it can repeat itself. This is true especially if we don’t learn from the mistakes of the past. But, looking back, we should understand the serious mistakes were common. Unrest, hunger, disease, and war within our borders were much more common in the past than they are today. And that’s something to think about and be thankful for.

The Tax Bill

The tax bill has been passed by Congress? What does this mean? For most Americans, it’s a time to party. This is because we are getting one of the largest tax cuts in decades. Although it sounds big, the actual effects might not be as big, at least at first.

Americans will begin seeing the effects of the tax cut in February. At the end of the year, it will feel like a 1-2% pay increased. That’s better than nothing! The bigger deal is that companies will pay less in taxes. That means a lot. Companies will do many things with this extra money.

Not every company will do the same thing. Some companies will invest in their own interests, such as research and development. Some will buy back their stock, raising the stock price for shareholders, like me. Anyone who invests in a 401k or an IRA (Individual Retirement Account) will benefit from this tax bill. Everyone, every American, should be investing for their retirement. That is unless they plan on working at age 100.

Some companies will give their employees bonuses and raises. What happened to the bonus? Bonuses, not only for executives, used to be more widespread. That might be coming back. AT&T, Comcast, and other companies announced a $1,000 special bonus for all of their employees. That’s huge! And good for them. I’m sure they deserve it. Along with that bonus, companies may begin to grant higher wage increases. This tax bill might, therefore, create better competition between companies. If Company A offers $50,000 a year for a position, and Company B offers $55,000 a year for the same position, which company will the prospective employee want to work at?

The main goal of the tax bill is to grow the economy. All signs are pointing to an energized economy. We’ll have to wait a few years to judge the effects of this tax bill. But I hope it’s good!

The Politics of Abuse

In the news today we see the dark side of politics. Sexual abuse has made headlines for weeks. It seems that it all started with Hollywood, however. Harvey Weinstein was one of the most famous movie producers in Hollywood. I saw “was” because he’s probably not going to be producing movies anymore. No, many women have come out saying that he abused them. Some of the stories are so bad, the police have opened an investigation into Harvey. There is a good chance that, at the end of the investigation, he will go to jail. But, at the same time, rich and powerful people like him tend to skip out and get bail.

After Harvey, it seemed like the floodgates opened up. Women who had been abused many years earlier finally felt that they could speak up. If they were going to, now is the time. Their voices will carry more weight, I believe. And it’s not over. More and more women, and some men are coming forward to detail what kinds of abuse they have to endure by powerful people. After Hollywood, the scandal spread to politics.

There are a number of Congressmen who have resigned due to inappropriate behavior. Most notable of these is the Senator Al Franken. He’s the most notable because he’s popular, or at least used to be popular. He’s a former comedian and was well-liked. He even had a show on television. On Monday, there is an election in Alabama. The politician is being accused of abuse. However, he is denying this. He’s ahead in the polls! We’ll see what happens.

This isn’t over yet. News stories are starting to trickle out that this kind of abuse is also happening on Wall Street. Some high-paid professionals are being accused of abuse while on the job, even. I think that over the next few weeks, we’ll find out more. Stay tuned!

Front and Center

The news stations on television have always covered politics as a topic. Newspapers and current events magazines have always printed political opinions. Why, then, does it seem like politics is so widespread today? The answer is not because more people are watching TV or reading the newspaper. Actually, most people don’t read newspapers anymore due to the Internet. The answer is because of who is the current president of the U.S. Political commentary seems to be so widespread because of Donald Trump.

This is not a positive or negative reading of the situation. It is only an observation about current events. Whether one leans liberal or conservative, the name Donald Trump elicits more emotions than talking about the 115th United States Congress. Many people probably don’t even know what I’m referring to when I write “115th”. That is simply the number of Congressional sessions there have been since 1789.

Trump in politics has been a wild ride. During the presidential primary, large crowds of supporters were met with large crowds of protesters. Many people were injured on both sides.

In March 2016, Trump, then a candidate for the presidency, was scheduled to hold a rally in Chicago. Surely, because Chicago has such a large police force, they could keep the peace. But that’s not what happened. Fearing some type of riot, Trump canceled his planned rally. Looking back, this was probably a good choice since it may have averted many injuries or something worse.

While Trump is still president, I see politics continuing to be front and center in the news cycle. This will be especially true if he runs for reelection. Sure, people might get tired of seeing politics all of the time. But it sure does give people something to talk about. After all, politics has always been around and it will always be around in the future.

The Kerry Vision Team


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