(Name) Call & Response
"Todd Pound you are a complete moron. I see lots of folks like you who are so brainwashed you can't even think! You are the poster boy for the mentally ill liberals. You are a useful tool for the left." - 5:44am Facebook Reply
"Todd you are a danger to humanity. You have so much bad information you are moronic. Seek help." - 5:58am Facebook Reply
I'm a Facebook neophyte. Has it always been so dramatic?
The replies above (curiously separated by roughly 15 minutes of stewing) were in response to this blurb:
Pretending that the ban would've somehow prevented 9/11 (Saudis) or that Trump's ban is even remotely constitutional or American or Christian, it remains unjustifiably fearful to assume refugees are entering the country to do it harm. Please meet a few. Many escaped terrifying situations. Others are here for medical care they cannot receive elsewhere (not free medical care, mind you). Some are here to study. All contribute. The US received 6 Nobel Prizes in Science and Medicine last year. All 6 were immigrants. I'm the result of illegal immigrants (circa 1637, England). The Iroquois Nation never asked my ancestors for papers. Migration is as old as humanity. It makes life a lot more interesting, providing a diversity of art and food (imagine no convenient access to chicken shawarma or sushi. Ghastly, yes?). If you remain convinced immigration is a problem, the most productive act might be to help fight worldwide pollution. According to a Dept. of Defense report, climate change will become the leading driver of displacement and migration in the coming decade. Solar panels > Walls. So let's put the fear to bed, shake hands and work together... you know, like Americans.
Yeah, my comment was somewhat flippant and, honestly, who among you isn't a little bit tired of hearing me mention the words "climate" and "change"? Broken. Record. It was personal too: all of my children's outgrown clothes and toys have gone to a Pakistani family, here under extraordinary circumstances.
So I don't object to "moron" and "moronic." Okay, the redundancy is a bit objectionable, but I kinda earned 'em. I'm clearly incapable of brevity and comments ought to be brief. If not moronic, my bluster be longwinded. However, "Brainwashed" does sting since I arrived at my aforementioned love of Chicken Shawarma and concern for ocean acidification with sturdy empiricism.
CO2's impact on sea life is actually quite easy to measure since we have observed the negative affect on small bodies of water and can extrapolate when an ocean's PH balance will tip. It's middle school chemistry + math + biology. One need not be a scientist. We're already seeing rather startling mass starvation of sea birds.
(I encourage perusal of Audubon's utterly non-partisan & comprehensive look at climate science and our feathered friends. Check your favorite species' chances of making it into the next century: http://climate.audubon.org/)
I mention birds since the unflattering quotes above were written by a gifted photographer of birds. I was curious. I peeked. Quite lovely. I illustrate birds. Common ground! Not only that, the individual's profile picture features two pretty horses. All the Pretty Horses is one of my all-time favorite novels. We're practically brothers!
Except for the "liberal" part. Honestly, I'm more of a moderate extremist. Sure, I lean a little socialist... but so did Teddy Roosevelt and Eisenhower and the current Pope and American professional sport leagues.
He's right about "danger to humanity." To pay the bills over the years, I have illustrated, animated, written, and designed video games. I think most parents would agree that video games make their lives more difficult. I'm sorry. To offset the damage my cartoon superhero games might cause, I have taught kids creative writing and coach baseball and basketball (employing a European motion offense, which is downright socialistic in its ball distribution, but if it's acceptable in San Antonio, Texas...).
I do seek help. I ask a lot of family, friends, surfing, the scientific method, vintage soul, outlaw country, punk, hip hop, cereal, ramen, scones, beer, burritos, bourbon, books, big trees, birds, and baseball.
Am I mentally ill? I don't know. I can buy a gun regardless. Thanks, GOP!
Placing a hesitant toe in social media has been an interesting lesson in just how communal and combative this place can be, like a crowded California freeway. Drive carefully, folks.
Recommended Post Listening: Well, shucks, I think I'm going to go back to the well and pick "Rise Above." I played this for my oldest when he was beaten up by a bully in 2nd grade. Applicable on the schoolyard and social media.