We have come to a time in space where people are cocked, locked, and ready to angrily fire at an instant. We are modern day Minutemen/women ready to be outraged and by sweet fancy Moses, we are armed to the teeth with righteous indignation. It’s ultimately righteous because it is coming from us. Those other fools are uneducated morons.
Someone said, you do well to win an argument with a learned person, but no one wins an argument with an idiot. This is true and if you happen to like to lock horns over something passionate, you will encounter this torch-carrying passionate activist who moments before was entirely rational. Now understand I have my tongue firmly planted in my cheek as I write this.
The reason I say this, is other than one of the deep philosophical discussions (read jujitsu wrestling matches) I get into with Jared Eikhoff, I can stand clear of passion and emotion and pretty much be open-minded. It’s not so with Jared because he’s like one of my kids and he’s well-educated, albeit still defining what to believe. I wrestle his brain trying to get some of the stuff he learned from Professor Cummings out of there and into the open so he can decide if the liberal stuff she teaches is fact or fiction.
I like and appreciate Professor Susan Cummings, the liberal phenom of Lee College and like to believe my 5 years in high school badgering the teacher have qualified me to take her on in civil debate. Years ago we agreed to disagree and I would sit down with the scholar and enjoy talking about most anything and even pick up the tab. Both she and I can separate passion from being civil in debate and that is very important if you want to verbally sword fight over ideals and remain friendly.
It’s simply not so when dealing with an unbridled passionate activist. Suddenly Dr. Jekyll turns into Mr. Hyde before your very eyes and vitriolic babblings overtake all sense of logic and opportunity to offer a comeback. Why, because they can no longer hear anything except their heartfelt passion towards everything from animal rights to “God” being removed from everything.
Passion is good when it comes to causes. Sure, if someone abuses a child or leaves a pet locked in a hot car this is cause for alarm and I’m not talking common sense items here. What I am referring to is extremism and with the politically correct movement firmly established, this lends to a self-appointed righteous air to the subject.
For instance, take the recent interest in a 13 year old lion being killed in Africa. One fellow declared the dentist should be fined a million dollars. A million dollars? Seriously? Another angrily wrote he should have his head cut off. I find this so absurd, it’s laughable. Lions in the wild live 10-14 years. This was a very old animal, so a million bucks seems extreme. How about $5000?
Some passion is earned by blood and a smart person knows not to provoke a cobra snake. When I encounter a Marine I also say “Semper Fi” which translates as “Always faithful” and call them Devil Dogs. I’m not stupid and insultingly say jarheads. They’ve earned the moniker on both ends, but Devil Dog is a compliment. Marines are passionate about being Marines all their life and I understand that.
Other rabid subjects include the Confederate flag, the right to bear arms, eating meat, the environment (on 17 levels) and my most recent discovery is… where Vidalia onions were developed! Yup, boy did I open up a can of whoop bunns on that subject.
I have many dear friends from my Georgia days and I recently enlightened – read baited Allyce Lankford on the less known fact that the present day cherished Georgia Vidalia onion is actually a Texas onion. Holy smokeski’s, talk about an instant eruption of passion! I of course acted as innocent as a nun and shocked that she would take offense.
Being me, I had to poke her with a fact stick on Facebook and this simply fanned the flames. You see, the Vidalia onion can only be grown in a certain area of Georgia due to the soil and is a state treasure. “Them’s fightin’ words, suh!” Now having lived in Georgia, them Georgians take their onions very seriously and I am guilty of igniting this passion, I admit.
The ultimate smack down was when I claimed the 1015 (also a Texas A&M invention) was sweeter and I only buy Vidalia’s when the 1015’s are out of season. The truth is other than the size difference, I really can’t tell all that much difference.
Not to let facts get in the way of a good argument, onions are so good for your heart that you should eat them with every meal. The harsher the onion is on your eyes, the better it is for your heart and both of these onions are very mild. I love them both and eat onions every day, and I am guilty of provoking this good woman to see her reaction and give me fodder for this column.
Folks, if you feel very strong emotions about a certain subject, do your best to keep it in check around your friends who do not share the same views or you may find them becoming strangely mute when you go off on your righteous tangent. Also beware of passion baiters like myself. We can be real irrational.