Asheville clergy offer wisdom in election aftermath

TENDING THE FLOCK: Since the election, Rev. Todd Donatelli, rector of The Cathedral of All Souls in Biltmore Village, says many parishioners have been looking for guidance as they process the outcome. Photo by Emma Grace Moon
TENDING THE FLOCK: Since the election, Rev. Todd Donatelli, rector of The Cathedral of All Souls in Biltmore Village, says many parishioners have been looking for guidance as they process the outcome. Photo by Emma Grace Moon

In the aftermath of an earthquake in American politics, and widespread anxiety about what course this country may take over the next few years, many Asheville clergy are wrestling with finding answers for themselves — and for congregants caught up in a raw moment of soul-searching.

In the early morning hours of Nov. 9, a nasty, bruising campaign ended in political newcomer Donald Trump’s stunning upset of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton — defying leading polls and media pundits.

Asheville was a lonely bubble of Democratic blue amid a sea of Republican red counties, state Board of Elections maps show. Buncombe County voters decisively favored Clinton over Trump, 54.3 percent to 40.1 percent. But the real estate developer-turned-reality-TV-star garnered 73.3 percent of the vote in McDowell, 62 percent in Haywood and Henderson, and 60.2 percent in Madison. Trump went on to win 76 of the Tar Heel State’s 100 counties, claiming North Carolina’s 15 electoral votes early on in a preview of the eventual outcome.

Yet many in Asheville and the rest of the country never saw it coming, which added to the shock and bewilderment some people felt.

The following Sunday, the Rev. Steve Runholt took the pulpit at Warren Wilson Presbyterian Church. Rattled by the election results and the Trump transition team’s first controversial moves, he had to dig deep into his Christian faith, his experience as a pastor and his understanding of theology. The resulting sermon offered no easy consolations.

“In moments like these, when the world we’ve always known shifts underneath us, when we feel threatened or uncertain or anxious about the future, we all want to be assured that things are going to be OK,” said Runholt. “I’m not going to make that promise, because I think we all know that things are not going to be OK — at least not in the short term. America is going to change in the days to come. Sadly, there is no doubt about this, because the change has already started.”

Like so many others, the Rev. Jim Dykes says he was surprised by the outcome. “The election upset, I think, does speak to what pollsters missed: this very broad disappointment and frustration with the last eight years of progressive administration, maybe the last 16 years,” notes Dykes, pastor of the 1,800-member North Asheville Baptist Church for the last 27 years.

And looking ahead, he thinks Trump and his team now face a huge responsibility. “It’s important for the president-elect to try to move us together and bring the country back together. How he does that, I don’t know, but it’s up to him.”

Powers and realities

The Rev. Guy Sayles, former pastor at Asheville’s First Baptist Church, had been scheduled as guest preacher at The Cathedral of All Souls in Biltmore Village that Sunday.

“Part of the frustration — and anger and grief — that Clinton’s supporters felt was their stunned realization that about half of the people in their country weren’t frustrated at all,” he told his audience. “They didn’t want to believe that their fellow citizens had put a man they see as a racist and a misogynist in the White House. Trump’s supporters, on the other hand, couldn’t understand how anyone could have wanted to elect someone they see as dishonest, too scripted and beholden to special interests.

“We can all see that we live in a bitterly divided nation, and the division isn’t simply into two different worlds but into multiple ones.

“We all share fear in common. Fear voted, and fear takes to the streets.

“All of us — left, right, center; red, blue and purple — feel gripped by powers and realities we can’t comprehend or control and which diminish and demean us. The fear we have in common is the greatest threat to the love we could have for each other. Fear keeps us from singing and dancing together as beloved children of God.”

NEIGHBORHOOD LOVE NOTES: On Sunday, Nov. 13, kids in the religious education program at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville wrote messages of advocacy, inclusion and support on sidewalks outside the church. The messages helped kids process feelings of anxiety for vulnerable people following the Nov. 8 presidential election, says Linda Topp, the congregation’s Director of Administration. Photo courtesy of UUCA
NEIGHBORHOOD LOVE NOTES: On Sunday, Nov. 13, kids in the religious education program at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville wrote messages of advocacy, inclusion and support on sidewalks outside the church. The messages helped kids process feelings of anxiety for vulnerable people following the Nov. 8 presidential election, says Linda Topp, the congregation’s Director of Administration. Photo courtesy of UUCA

A call to keep working

The Rev. Todd Donatelli, the rector at All Souls, reached out to his parishioners in a blog post, cautioning against easy answers or trying to process complex emotions too quickly. “I’ve talked in the past about the importance of our need as a culture to breathe after significant events in our collective lives: how we need to resist the idolatry and hubris of the 24-hour news ethos, in which is practiced the belief that we can name immediately what momentous events are about.”

Instead, Donatelli wrote, this is “one of those times where some deep breaths, some deep pauses, are called for; where some spaces to feel and connect to the myriad feelings emerging in us as a people are needed.”

Many, said the Episcopal priest, are going through the various stages of grief defined by psychiatrist and author Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. “I’ve been thinking about anger, denial, despair, bargaining — they are never in neat order,” noted Donatelli. “We get to the despair part when we recognize the anger and bargaining aren’t getting us anywhere. How do we then move into an acceptance that isn’t submission but a call to keep working on our lives, both communal and personal?”

Stopping the vitriol

At Congregation Beth HaTephila in Asheville, Rabbi Batsheva Meiri preached on Veterans Day, the Friday following the election, paying tribute to those who’d protected the Constitution and the nation with their lives.

“For me, the future depends on ceasing fire, stopping the vitriol and beginning the work of peace,” she said. “It’s time for all the citizenry of the United States to get to work on making our nation worthy of you, our veterans, and also those who sacrificed their lives so we could pursue peace and share our prosperity with all those who live in our country.”

Meiri urged soul-searching rather than placing blame. “If I learn anything from this bloody battle for the future of our country, it is that I shouldn’t be surprised. I fell asleep — we fell asleep — on the job. We closed our eyes to so many people in the heart of this country who were left behind, who have until this moment felt invisible. We shut our ears and didn’t listen to those whose voices have been silenced or whose lives are so bitter they haven’t strength to speak up, to speak out,” she continued.

Biblical values

Throughout the Republican primaries and the general election, Trump’s message resonated with voters who identified themselves as evangelical white Christians. The candidate won a record 81 percent of this demographic’s votes, versus just 16 percent for Clinton, according to the Pew Research Center’s postelection survey.

For Dykes, however, it was just another Sunday service. “I didn’t preach about it,” he says. “I didn’t think it was something that we needed to gloat about if some folks were happy. I’m sure there were plenty who were. But at the same time, for folks on the other side, not saying, ‘Woe is us.’”

The Sunday before Election Day, Dykes says he’d told his audience that “God would still be on his throne Wednesday, no matter who would win the White House. I didn’t mention the election beyond saying that we have the right and responsibility to engage in the process. As Bible believers, I think we ought to prayerfully engage and vote for the candidates we think would most align with biblical values.”

At Pole Creek Baptist Church in Candler, the Rev. Dennis Thurman says he heard little discussion about the election and steered clear of politics from the pulpit. “I didn’t mention it the next Sunday. You can look at the polling numbers from Pole Creek’s site and note that Trump was the overwhelming choice. Honestly, I didn’t like either choice.”

The quaint countryside church serves as the polling place for Buncombe County’s Precinct 49.1. Trump tallied 559 votes (69 percent) compared with 198 votes (about 24 percent) for Clinton.

“Though I’m glad Hillary lost, I have no great hope that Trump will be much different,” Thurman said in an email. “Of course, I could be wrong — and hope I am. We pray for the nation and its leaders. I’m concentrating on what I can do something about — sharing the Gospel, making disciples, loving people and helping them to grow in their love for God.”

The hand of God

Franklin Graham, the son of famed evangelist Billy Graham and head of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, had campaigned in all 50 states, urging Christians to vote for biblical values. As the head of a nonprofit ministry, Graham is barred by federal law from making outright endorsements, but he’s never been shy about supporting conservative policies. And Trump was among the long list of politicos and celebrities who showed up for Billy Graham’s 95th birthday celebration at the Omni Grove Park Inn in 2013.

PREACHER MAN: Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, wrote on Facebook that he saw the hand of God at work in the election results. Photo courtesy of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association
PREACHER MAN: Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, wrote on Facebook that he saw the hand of God at work in the election results. Photo courtesy of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association

In a Nov. 9 Facebook post, Graham congratulated Trump on his upset victory while calling for unity. “We need to pray for our new president, vice president and our other leaders every day — whether we agree with them or not,” he wrote. “It is my prayer that we will truly be ‘one nation under God.’”

Two days after the election, however, Graham took a stronger stand on Facebook, writing, “While the media scratches their heads and tries to understand how this happened, I believe that God’s hand intervened Tuesday night to stop the godless, atheistic progressive agenda from taking control of our country.”

Taking deep breaths

Over at the Great Tree Zen Temple, the Rev. Teijo Munnich says she finds herself meditating more, focusing on the “tonglen” practice of Tibetan Buddhism to deal with difficult emotions and cultivate lovingkindness and forgiveness for the president-elect.

“If we get caught up in fear and anger and just protest movements, you’re going to miss the real thing that you need to be doing right now,” she maintains. “For my practice, that’s the value of sitting down and taking a few deep breaths and asking yourself, ‘What is going on right now?’ And saying that for the next four years.”

Munnich says she was shocked by the election results, perhaps as much as Donald Trump himself. Having watched Trump’s victory speech, she says, “There’s a man who can’t believe he just won.”

Elder Alfred Blount of Tried Stone Missionary Baptist Church says he’s been hearing similar sentiments from congregants unsettled by the prospect of a Trump administration.

“What are we going to do? What’s going to happen? Where do we go from here? That’s what I’m hearing from folks,” Blount reveals. “But we have the reassurance that the God we serve is able to deliver us, carry us through, regardless of who is in the White House. For his children, we’re going to be OK.”

Still, a minister’s job isn’t easy at such times, he concedes, since parishioners often hold diverse opinions. “You’re dealing with people who are uncertain, and you have to deal with people who don’t think church is the place to deal with political matters.”

Beacons of light

Many local religious leaders, though, are urging not just faith and prayers but concrete action.

The day after the election, Byron Ballard opened the Mother Grove Goddess Temple on Woodfin Place, lighting candles on the north altar and playing soft music. Friends who practice earth religions and faith in the divine feminine gathered to express their fears.

“We all feel that we are facing enormous challenges that will require our best — our thinking, feeling, strategic and worshipful best,” she said afterward. “Challenging times require strength and vision, and the help of the divines and our ancestors. These are the times we are made for.”

Runholt, meanwhile, says his congregants are starting to move past their initial shock. “People are starting to ask, ‘What can we do?’”

He’s urging people to contact or donate to the NAACP (naacp.org), Anti-Defamation League (adl.org), Southern Poverty Law Center (splcenter.org) or the Asheville-based Compañeros Inmigrantes de las Montañas en Acción (cimawnc.org).

Beyond that, continues Runholt, “We’re thinking about specific ways we can be a beacon of light and hope to our neighbors who may be feeling lost or afraid in these anxious times, to assure those who now wonder if their lives matter that they do matter, and to build relationships with our fellow citizens who may not see the world in the same way we do.”

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About Dale Neal
Neal is a veteran journalist covering the people and places of the planet from Western North Carolina to Pakistan. He is the author of two novels, "Cow Across America" and "The Half-Life of Home." He teaches fiction and narrative in the Lenoir-Rhyne Graduate Center of Asheville and runs workshops for the Great Smokies Writer's Program at UNCA. He holds an MFA in creative writing from Warren Wilson College. Follow me @dale_neal

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37 thoughts on “Asheville clergy offer wisdom in election aftermath

  1. The Real World

    “Yet many in Asheville and the rest of the country never saw it coming, which added to the shock and bewilderment some people felt.” — yes, because MANY are willfully deaf and blind. They do not care what affects all people which is why they ignore so many.

    You have to have some special, nameable identity. You can make it up, even. Just get the right people in the media to trumpet your newfangled identity as well as your emotional, button-pushing story and, voila, the intellectual giants on social media will go nuts with their “support” and you’re off to the races.

    Meanwhile, too few talk about (or care) that millions of Americans can’t get decent jobs, affordable healthcare and pay their bills. It’s not rocket science, people. You just have to wake up and quit your your denial habit.

    • NFB

      No different from the “willfully deaf and blind” who were shocked when President Obama won reelection because they convinced themselves via Fox that the polls were “skewed” and Romeny was ahead.

      But that is the problem in this country across the board — too many people, regardless of their views, seek out only those news sources that confirm their viewpoint, associate only with people who share that viewpoint and desperately do what they must to stay inside their bubble and echo chamber.

      • The Real World

        NFB …. Paragraph 1 – Yes, however the losing party did seem to take it like adults, didn’t they? Correct me if I don’t remember accurately but, in 2012 there were no millions raised and lawsuits filed to do recounts (even though there were many, blatant voting irregularities reported), the losers didn’t riot in the streets around the country damaging property and hurting people, there weren’t whining, sobbing ADULTS on TV hysterically claiming the world as we know it is over. And on and on. The Left has some valid positions and attributes but maturity is not one of them, as they’ve made abundantly and continually clear.

        Paragraph 2 – I completely agree with this. It’s a problem. Here’s my experience of the last 20 years: significantly religious Republicans and almost all Democrats pretty much refuse facts and reason. They both are so bound-up in their dogma and neither think for themselves, so they remain irrational. The most willing, open-minded, reasonable people I’ve had conversations with, heard speak or read their writings are: Independents and mildly to non-religious Republicans. It sure would be nice to see an Independent Party president in my lifetime.

        • NFB

          The recounts are silly and are little more than a publicity stunt for Jill Stein to try to extend her 15 minutes. There is no love lost between me and Stein and the Green party. The protesters seem to be little more than trustifarian hipsters many of who probably did not even vote. They and their actions hardly represent the mainstream of the anti-Trump sentiment in this country which remains extensive.

          The reaction from the right not just after the 2012 election but for the past 8 years has included the birther nonsense (which HAS involved lawsuits) questioning the president’s religious affiliation. Gun sales increased after both of his elections, militia groups grew, etc. Personally I find the notion of some hipsters throwing rocks through storefront windows, while immature and yes, even deplorable, far less troubling than self appointed guardians of the Constitution (many with overtly racist ideologies) arming themselves to the teeth.

          As for being grounded in reality, well, over the past 8 years polls showed Republicans of all stripes far more likely to believe President Obama was not born in the US, is a Muslim, that both the Dow has gone down and the unemployment rate has gone up on his watch when both assertions are demonstrably false. Republicans who got health insurance under Obamacre in red states were often shown to not understand that they were getting the very Obamacare they deemed evil and “socialist” and polls have regularly shown that Fox news viewers are the LEAST informed and those are the right have been more susceptible to fake news than those on the left. Witness, among other things, the man who shot up a pizza place in Washington because it was involved in a child trafficing ring used to funnel money to the Clinton campaign. A new polls shows that 40% of Trump voters believe Trump won the popular vote when, in fact, he has lost it by close to 3 million votes.

          I am under no illusions that the left has its bubble too — one does not need go much further than downtown Asheville to get a feel for that — but I take the opposite view of yours. It seems very much to me that liberals and Democrats have a more grounded view of reality that Republicans be their religious or secular ones.

        • boatrocker

          How soon you forget Karl Rove’s 2012 meltdown. All that was missing was a cup of hot chocolate.
          For a poster who claims he sees the truth about the corruption in both major political parties, I have yet to see you
          take to task any party not connected with a lady named H.

          • The Real World

            You’re welcome, Phil. There’s always been some naivete, immaturity and irrationality in the Democrat Party because of the youthful segment their message attracts. (it all sounds great, right?) But, the young don’t yet have practical, real world (ahem) experience and that’s where the rubber meets the road.

            Seems to me that Democrats have really gone off the rails in the last 10 -15 years in that the absurd, hysterical, irrational behavior has seeped into their adherents of more mature ages. Middle-aged and older adults thinking and screeching like adolescents has not served them well. (Hello?) Additionally, there appears to be an written rule in that crowd of not calling out anyone in their ranks who is way out on the edge. That doesn’t serve them well either b/c if the fringe aren’t tempered it, naturally, causes people to believe that most all of them are bonkers for not recognizing the nutters.

            I’d say I’m cautiously optimistic about 2017 and beyond. Good grief, the pendulum most definitely needed to swing back some! But, by definition, I’m don’t much trust politicians so, like the others, Trump will have to earn mine.

          • Phil Williams

            Amen – it would probably dismay certain folks to learn that I am a registered Democrat – they can look it up in the NC voter registry under Phillip Williams of Buncombe (Skunkum) County….but I have conservative leanings on several issues, have never voted the straight party line, and have not gone along with much it ever in my life.

            And I was not a Trump supporter, although I am certain the very things you describe lead to the pendulum swinging the other way – average people got tired of the screeching after awhile, I think.

            Mr. Trump will be my Commander-in-Chief now, and I will pray for him as I did for Mr. Obama. And I share the cautious optimism as well. It may be too much to hope for, but maybe the shock of all this will cause certain folks to pull their heads out of their 4th point of contact for a bit and look around.

    • The Real World

      In a bit of perfect serendipity I come across this today, proving my assertion above:
      One day in the not-too-distant future, you may be asked to stand at attention at your local ballpark — Busch Stadium, perhaps — to celebrate Mena Heritage Day. The organist will do his level best to play traditional Mena music, vendors will serve Mena delicacies, and a chorus of Mena-American children will sing the national anthem. Huh? What on earth is Mena, you ask? It is the new ethnic group created by the Obama administration to cobble together Americans with origins in the Middle East and North Africa. The group will comprise people as varied as ethnic Berbers, Arabs, Israelis, Persians, and many more. According to proposals by the Office of Management and Budget, Mena may be on the 2020 census.

      But if that is the case, you may persist, there is no Mena music, cuisine, race, ethnicity, or culture, so what the heck are they going to be doing at Busch Stadium? And you’d be right, technically. But that wouldn’t stop pride in Menaism from being progressively drilled into the young and unsuspecting by our schools or from being embraced by corporations and sports leagues that want to buy a little peace. And, of course, let’s not forget how government would bribe people to tick the Mena box with the full array of benefits that come in the affirmative-action cornucopia. Or that congressional districts would be carved off for Mena people so that they would be able, in the words of the amended Voting Rights Act, “to participate in the political process and to elect a candidate of their choice.”

      Read more: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/442792/ethnic-racial-identity-politics-obama-administration-mena-office-management-budget?utm_source=nr&utm_campaign=identity&utm_medium=satemail&utm_content=gonzales&utm_term=VDHM

      Told you. You want a special identity? Make it up and find some connected friends to help you “legalize it”. Can’t make this stuff up!

      • Huhsure

        Well, when the American Right is stoning Muslims in the streets and hanging them from trees, deporting them, denying them entry into the country, and rounding them up into concentration camps, this will be handy for historians to be able to call them hate crimes, instead of the sins of “rambunctious youth without enough jobs.”

        http://nydn.us/2hxBDqv

        Here’s some more rambunctious youth for ya:

        http://bit.ly/2gwu2e4

        http://bit.ly/2h9SAdN

        Trumpified!

      • boatrocker

        Kind of like the altright making up an ethnic identity of ‘white’?.

        As usual, nice cherrypicking.

        Yea, cuz whitey always got along so well in Europe together, didn’t they?
        Never any wars or anything.
        And in the New World too.

        Question Real(fantasy)World- when Spencer’s minions establish their ‘racially pure white nation’, will Americans of Italian, Polish, Roma, French, Irish, English, Russian and others all hold hands and sing kumbaya? By the way, unless your neighbor announces himself as such, you might not even recognize a Jew when you see one as they look so much like ‘us’ it’s scary! Ahhhhhhhh!

        We’re all waiting on your expertise in this matter to set us straight.

        And keep posting your fearbating of Muslims.
        (whispering “Soros, Alinsky, Soros, Alinsky” to give RW Jewish nightmares tonight).

        By the way your coveted National Anthem was only a poem until they lifted the melody from a pub song from the Anacreon, an English ‘mens’ club’
        which contains numerous pagan references in the original pub song (from Greece!).

        Your coveted Pledge of Allegiance was also written by a socialist named Bellamy too and did not contain the words ‘under God’ until the McCarthy era.

        America the Beautiful was written by one of them lesbianites Katherine Lee Bates.

        Your patriotic “American” traditions are borrowed at best, lifted at worst.

        • The Real World

          Dude – nobody reads your nonsensical blather. Maybe it’s Ritalin that you need. Cut your posts in half and make sense — then we’ll read them.

          • boatrocker

            which is
            1 why you respond to certain minor points but not the ones that challenge your strange thinking
            2 why if 20 lines is a problem stick to texts and stay off the big boy board
            3 why I apologize from the bottom of my heart for subjecting you to 20 lines of words that poke holes in your reasoning.

      • Phil Williams

        I bet the Mena thing would be a sight to behold – especially when the historical national, family and tribal rivalries, cultural grudges, and general bad blood pop out, and they go to slaughtering one another in the stadium……like the 50-year “peace” that the Russians and Marshal Tito enforced in the former Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia – soon as the nuclear damping rods were removed (be nice, my children, or we send you to Gulag – or maybe even shoot you) – families who had been neighbors, worked together – even intermarried – began killing one another wholesale.

        Same with the artificial peace that colonialism enforced in the Sudan, in Iraq, in Palestine, in India and Pakistan…..sure, the colonial powers and Western interests inflamed these rivalries and divisions, and kept them going. Don’t matter whose fault it was, but some of these factions – even within Islam – have hated and persecuted one another for centuries without the “help” of the West.

  2. Deplorable Infidel

    All the little snowflakes were deceived by the pollsters … plain and simple… and God did not want the most EVIL
    woman on the planet elected. We have made it thru the worst president in history, so we will make it thru this show.
    Get over yourselves it’s ‘democracy’ ! rofl!

  3. The Real World

    Let me add this timely and important piece of info. Healthcare.gov has been a live website for over 3 years and it STILL doesn’t operate properly!! It is a cluster. Even the kool-aid drinkers ought to be angry about that, if they could compute like reasonable adults.

    Truly, how low are their expectations?

    • Lulz

      They don’t care because many on the left have huge government pensions. They need to be starved out.

      • Snowflake (Social Justice Worrier)

        Did you hear the latest about the frenzy to cash out of the Dallas police pension fund before it goes insolvent? I think at some point crashing pension funds will be the norm across the board.

  4. They never saw it coming.

    LOL.

    Obama’s Legacy:
    https://twitter.com/timothypeck/status/804716429580922880

    GOP Dominance:
    – NC House
    – NC Senate
    – NC Council of State
    – 54 NC County Boards
    – Majority of State legislatures
    – Majority of Governorships
    – U.S. House
    – U.S. Senate
    – Presidency
    – Democrat Party in tatters

    Yet To Come:
    – U.S. Supreme Court
    – Federal Courts
    – President’s Cabinet
    – U.S. Department heads
    – Federal Agencies

    There are 3,141 counties in the United States.

    Trump won 3,084 of them.
    Clinton won 57.

    There are 62 counties in New York State.

    Trump won 46 of them.
    Clinton won 16.

    Clinton won the popular vote by approx. 1.5 million votes.

    In the 5 counties that encompass NYC, (Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Richmond & Queens) Clinton received well over 2 million more votes than Trump. (Clinton only won 4 of these counties; Trump won Richmond)

    Therefore these 5 counties alone, more than accounted for Clinton winning the popular vote of the entire country.

    These 5 counties comprise 319 square miles.

    The United States is comprised of 3, 797,000 square miles.

    When you have a country that encompasses almost 4 million square miles of territory, it would be ludicrous to even suggest that the vote of those who inhabit a mere 319 square miles should dictate the outcome of a national election.

    Large, densely populated Democrat cities (NYC, Chicago, LA, etc) don’t and shouldn’t speak for the rest of our country.

    • Big Al

      And thus the rationalization for the “evil” Electoral College.

      Thank You, Founding Fathers.

      • The Real World

        Thanks for all of the factual detail, very interesting.

        And LOL, the comment just below is proof positive of what I assert above in response to NFB. Facts and reason rarely register with The Donkey Party.

        • boatrocker

          Ahhhm RW goes for another gaslighting trick, but is denied!

          The right has successfully taken the lessons to heart of masters like Goebbels and Orwell’s idea of ‘doublespeak’, and thus is now now given a reprieve of acknowledging anything like NC’s restrictive voting laws, the resurgence of white fascist groups and violence against ‘them’ (as in not wackoright).

          An example is clearly provided? Do the following-
          discredit the media source ie ‘libr’l media!’
          accuse perpetrators of said hate crimes (Dylan Roof for example) as being paid DNC operatives
          for extra fear and hate flavor, add the Jewish names Soros or Alinsky
          soft shoe around David Duke’s endorsement, create more touchy feely names like the altright
          spin an accusation on its head and then accuse a lady name H or a man named o of doing worse but not examining the same accusation against the right

          Lather, rinse, repeat.

          RW, it’s a given you have no cred here whatsoever until you can call out both sides of the political spectrum.
          Until then, willfully ignore, distort and flat out shout anyone down. It seems to have worked for you so far.

          • The Real World

            LOL ….. a pot (head) calling the kettle black. Practice what you preach, Boatie, and illuminate us with the shortcomings you recognize in HRC and our outgoing President. There are MANY…… yet I have not once read you state them.

            By all means, show us the way.

          • Huhsure

            Cheap shot. “Pothead.” Someone woke up in the 1950’s again.

          • Huhsure

            Bet you didn’t see this coming: massive Social Security cuts.

            https://www.ssa.gov/oact/solvency/SJohnson_20161208.pdf

            Spoiler: you’re not retiring this year? Well, you’re screwed.

            Welcome to Republican hegemony. Better have a steady supply of lubricant on hand. And don’t think you get to “consent.” This is Trump’s Republican party, after all.

          • boatrocker

            Noooooooice- articulate and well thought out as always.
            I suppose I’d have to have the impetus to smoke it, afford it and find it first,wouldn’t it.

            Our outgoing POTUS and the HRC are not the POTUS elect- why do they matter? I’m quite happy with the election results.
            Voltaire, after all said we get the government we deserve, and deserve it we do. Enjoy, Goose.

    • Mary

      Thank you for that, it surely puts it in perspective, loud and clear. I am so tired of being made to feel like I commuted a mortal sin because I voted against Hillary.

      • huhsure

        No, you just voted for a racist who made racism his platform. And an unapologetic perpetrator of multiple sexual assaults over the course of his lifetime.

        And now we learn that you voted for a man who clearly has zero interest in actually, you know, being President.

      • boatrocker

        You do know there were more than 2 candidates to vote for recently I hope. Regardless of anyone’s chances of winning/polls, etc,
        yes- there were more than 2 candidates to vote for. Voting after becoming well informed, with a conscience is not a mortal sin either.

        Call me close minded, but only voting for a ‘brand name’, aka red or blue is a mortal sin for one reason- if we are supposedly the ‘greatest nation on earth’, wouldn’t the ‘greatest citizens of said greatest nation’ deserve more than 2 choices?

  5. Richard Keefe

    “He’s urging people to contact or donate to the … Southern Poverty Law Center”

    Just for the record, according to its own online tax records, the SPLC received more than $140 million dollars in donations over the past three years and currently has unrestricted cash reserves exceeding $300 million dollars. In short, the SPLC has plenty of cash at the moment.

    http://wp.me/pCLYZ-pX

    Your local food bank, women’s shelter or free medical clinic, even your local SPCA, could do far more with your gift than the SPLC would. Give locally, where the need is greater.

    • Lulz

      The Asheville bubble will pop. It’s a given considering that the area is exclusively a haven for low wages and extreme gaps in quality of living. The vocal leftist that comment in the media are the one’s who are the most disconnected from the economic reality of it. As well as the cronies entrenched in government. Just look at the ACT and some of the frequent commenters who claim to be all about progressive ideals. One owns at least 8 west Asheville rentals and the other lives on town Mountain. So of course they can afford higher taxes and the illegal immigrants and jobs shipping out of the country. They aren’t personally affected by it. Nor do they sacrifice anything in their lives to promote it. And of course they are big supporters of the SPLC and the like.

      • Lulz

        Point being is to look at those who support leftist insanity the most and you’ll find that they are by far the one’s who lives will be the less affected by it.

  6. boatrocker

    1-All consuming nationalism
    2-Disdain for basic human rights
    3-Enemies/Scapegoats as a unifying cause
    4-Supremacy of the military
    5- Rampant sexism
    6-Highly controlled mass media
    7-Obsession with national security
    8-Religion and government are intertwined
    9-Corporate power is protected
    10-Labor power is suppressed
    11-Disdain for education and the arts
    12-Obsession with crime and punishment
    13-Rampant cronyism/corruption
    14-Fraudulent elections

    Just thought readers might like a lil’ ol list of what a 2003 study found Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, Suharto and Pinochet all had in common.
    Here’s some wisdom for election aftermath- fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

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