Dear God: Please Help Me Stop Cursing at Strangers

cartoon of man swearing

Dear God,

Please help me survive until the election without punching someone in the face.

As you know, I’ve never punched anyone in the face. As you know, I am a proud graduate of the Taunt-and-Run School of Combat. I’m all talk, God. Inside this creampuffy body is the soul of, well, a creampuff.

But I just sort-of cursed at a stranger on a friend’s Facebook page. And I don’t feel bad about it, which makes me worried. Because what am I becoming if I can talk that way to a stranger?

Do acronyms count as swearing?

This guy claimed that the 40-hour workweek isn’t covering people’s expenses anymore because people have cell phones and second cars and cable. I countered that minimum wage hasn’t kept up with inflation—which is just a small portion of the actual problem, but it was the easiest bit to mention.

The guy then said that minimum wage jobs were never meant to support a family and are really only for high schoolers, and then he cited some bullshit numbers about how only a small portion of the population works those jobs anyway.

And then, instead of doing the research to get the real numbers (like I would’ve done months ago) … and instead of countering the many problems with his argument, I said this: “Glad to see you’ve got this all sorted, Richard. Simple solutions often work for complex problems when you have no idea WTF you’re talking about.”

God … I just don’t have it in me anymore. I can no longer try to talk sense into people who have no sense. I can no longer respect viewpoints that are based on … what? I don’t even know. Propaganda? Gut feelings? Lies?

Why do I say anything at all then, God? This is what I cannot explain. I have such a hard time letting someone say something so uninformed and letting it just sit there.

Lies should not be able to take up the same amount of shelf space as truth, God. 

My friend list has gotten smaller

I have always prided myself on not losing friends over politics, but I have during the past two years. I haven’t unfriended many people, but when I have, I have told people that they were crossing a line and that I was about to unfriend them.

I’ve been unfriended bunches of times. Only once did the person announce they were doing it … after feeling like I didn’t defend him from my other friends when he was touting the “bad people on both sides” argument after Charlottesville.

I have always enjoyed debate. I have always welcomed it. The week after the 2016 election I had breakfast with a Trump-supporting friend and said “Tell me all the reasons you like him. I’m not going to argue. I just want to hear what you like. Maybe there are things I’m missing here.”

This friend created an actual spreadsheet that outlined many issues she wanted to discuss. This is a smart, college-educated, not-a-hick woman. (I laughed when I saw her spreadsheet. It’s so her to be the A student.)

But within all that, she talked about the reparations Facebook page where black people supposedly just ask for new laptops and guilty white people send them money. She said that anti-semitic graffiti was the work of the left to make Trump look bad. I dug into that one hard when I got home … it wasn’t true. I practically wrote an essay disproving it and sent it to her. I sent her a link with the writeup about the original incident in a local paper, and then links showing how Gateway Pundit and other media outlets misrepresented the story and then just kept quoting each other as sources.

I don’t remember what she replied. All I remember is that my email didn’t matter.

She and I have been very careful with each other since then. I think we both want to stay friends … but there is a cauldron bubbling under the surface. I am so very sad about this.

I want to take a nap, please

God, if I’m willing to curse at a stranger (I’m assuming acronyms count here) then I guess I’m not much better than anyone else out there setting up their barricades.

I’m so tired. So, so tired. I’m actually too tired to punch anybody, so I guess I don’t really need help in avoiding that.

I just don’t know how to exist right now. I’m envious of the people who can tune all of this out. Tuning out has never been my particular gift.

I’m also someone who has the possibly idiotic view that maybe … just maybe … there’s hope that some smart, good-hearted people who have unwittingly ended up backing a racist, lying thief and bully will come to their senses. That maybe, they’re not really racists themselves and all of this is just a big accident? Oopsie! But the longer this goes on, the less hope I have.

A humble entreaty

So God, where does that leave this prayer? If I’m not going to punch anyone and I’m not going to change anyone’s mind and I really just want to take a nap until this is all over … what have I called you to this meeting for? We need some action steps.

Please help me remember that while evil is powerful, so is good. Help me remember that one positive of this very stressful time is that ugly, quiet things that were happening in the dark in our country are now seeing daylight. We can’t fix what we don’t see.

Please continue to shine a light on the things that need healing.

Please help me stop cursing at strangers. 

Please, please, please, please, please reunite all the families that were separated at the border. And please, please, please, please, please help heal the psychological wounds of all the people affected by that.

Please, please, please, please provide comfort and healing and grace to all of the people who have been affected by gun violence. And please, please, please, please help us find a way to stop this slaughter.

Please lead us to elect people who are sincerely interested in the greater good for everyone.

I could go on and on, God, but I guess that’s enough for now.

Oh! One more. Please shine a giant ray of hope down on this country soon. Like, Tuesday, for example. We could really use it.

Your friend-who-totally-will-not-punch-anyone,

Trish

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Writer/blogger.
Philosopher/raconteur.
New-age smartass.

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