Make America Hate Again
Approximately twenty-five years ago, I had an intense personal experience that left me with a virtually unshakable belief in a supernatural God. The most unexpected consequence of that most remarkable experience was losing the ability to hate other human beings. I could hate the way certain people treated me or how they mistreated others, but not animus toward the individual. After that fateful night, I no longer found myself occasionally having to resist the urge to punch somebody in the face. Until recently, that is. Even when Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda murdered 3,000 American citizens on 9/11 only six years later, I took no pleasure from seeing photographs of dead terrorists. When President Obama spiked the football by announcing that Osama bin Laden had been killed a few months before his reelection in 2012, I was glad that a serious threat to our society had been eliminated, but I could not celebrate the thought he was burning in Hell, even though I believe in Hell and believe bin Laden deserves it, because I believe Hell actually exists. Whether or not we face human punishment in the course of this mortal life, we will be held to account for the harm we have done to others during the course of our lives. Eventually, as Johnny Cash once sang, “God’s gonna cut you down.” From the moment of our birth it’s always been a question of when, not if it will happen.
All that matters when we die is whether or not divine justice awaits us upon our final breath, and I have good reasons to believe it does. I once had the opportunity to meet and interview Matthew Botsford, a man who had been hit by a stray bullet from an Uzi in the back of his head and was considered beyond all hope when his body hit the ground. He was so far gone that doctors wanted to harvest his organs. I learned about his story from a television program called I Survived: Beyond and Back, and needed to know why Matthew believed he had been punished in Hell when he’d been an innocent bystander at a random shooting, when most people who experience an NDE claim to have visited heaven. His answer shocked me -- Matthew thought he’d deserved it. He explained that he’d become obsessed with material possessions prior to his nearly fatal experience, and also said that he’d forgiven the man who shot him even though he’s been left with permanent injuries because he believes the man had saved him from spending an eternity in Hell. I can’t say with absolute certainty that his experience was real, but he believes it was, and a phenomena known as corroborated veridical NDE memories offers compelling scientific evidence that our “spiritual” conscious minds can create accurate new memories even when our physical brains are incapacitated.
I can only pray that someday I will learn how to be as forgiving toward people causing harm to others. Today is not yet that day. Quite frankly, tomorrow’s not looking too good, either, unless I quarantine myself from the Internet. Hate is a powerful but negative emotion that is emotionally exhausting -- it takes some real effort to sustain hatred for any length of time. Jesus taught that we should turn the other cheek when someone strikes us rather than hitting them back and to love our enemies, but that’s easier said than done when my enemy hates me without even knowing me. My enemy thinks I’m a racist, hateful moron and treats me like I’m a foolish, ignorant child instead of a grandfather with a lifetime of experience.
Let’s get real here for a minute. COVID-19 is not comparable to the bubonic plague. We’re not talking about an airborne version of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. It’s not remotely comparable to an Ebola epidemic and certainly not the freaking Andromeda Strain, either. Yet remember when the media first reported the outbreak in Wuhan? Long before there were any cases in the U.S., the American public was shown images of dead bodies lying on Chinese streets where they had fallen, laying the foundation for the mass panic the media has now managed to create. Fearmongering has gotten completely out of control, and there is only one logical explanation for this happening right now -- to damage the reelection chances of President Trump and simultaneously deflect attention away from Joe Biden.
This degree of hysteria is just ridiculous. It’s time to dust off our copies of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy to stare at the helpful reminder on its cover: Don’t Panic!
Does shutting down American society completely make any sense, when 99 percent of the people who get sick will survive, according to medical experts? No, it doesn’t. According to the CDC, 80,000 people died because of the flu over the winter of 2017, but life didn’t come to a screeching halt. On October 24, 2009, during the swine flu pandemic, President Barack Obama declared a national emergency only after 22 million Americans had been infected and 4,000 had died. By the time the crisis ended in 2010, over 57 million Americans had gotten sick with the swine flu and 11,600 of them died (almost 1200 young children).
In contrast, fewer than three thousand Americans have tested positive for COVID-19 to date, and only 57 people have died. So, why is this hysteria happening? The degree of panic we see is not justified by the relative risk of infection. My personal opinion is that this is all just a distraction to keep the American people from paying too much attention to Joe Biden during the Democratic primaries, and to keep hammering away at President Trump. Blaming Trump for a viral pandemic simply doesn’t make any sense.
Yet Lawrence O’Donnell seizes the opportunity to accuse President Trump of mass murder on MSNBC. Jim Acosta attacked the Trump administration as xenophobic for referring to COVID-19 as the “Wuhan coronavirus,” even though anchors on his network used those exact same words long before Trump. This video roll showing the media hypocrisy compiled by a Twitter user should embarrass Acosta, if he was capable of shame. Or, watch the expression on this Bloomberg reporter’s face as she rolls her eyes when a journalist from Fox News asks Joe Biden a legitimate question about Hunter’s legal issues for failing to support his illegitimate child. The media were happy enough to report on Bristol Palin’s illegitimate child during the 2012 campaign, even though the family was taking care of the child, unlike Hunter Biden. Reporters don’t even pretend to be fair and impartial anymore. One “journalist” even wrote an article saying that she’d rather be in Italy under house confinement instead of the U.S. because the Italian government is handling the crisis much better than President Trump, but claimed she couldn’t find a ticket to get from New York to Italy. Conservatives on Twitter appropriately called BS on her ludicrous claim, not only pointing out a seat was available on the Norwegian Air Shuttle out of JFK, one person even offered to buy the ticket. Not to be outdone, some nitwit music professor wrote an op-ed for NBC saying he felt safer under quarantine in China than he does here at home.
Reading this drivel makes me want to punch this professor in the face. I’ve actually been to China. COVID-19 attacks the respiratory system, and air pollution in China is awful, closer to Third World quality, nowhere near as clean as our air. I was born with asthma and can tell the difference when I’m breathing dirty air. Yes, we are painfully aware that morons like this professor actually exist, but must their idiotic opinions be shared by the media?
I’m angry because many innocent people and small businesses are going to suffer cruel and unnecessary economic loss because the media have created this panic. This is all about politics, but nobody is going to accuse the Chinese government of manufacturing this crisis in order to help the political fortunes of Joe Biden, even though there are about a billion dollars’ worth of reasons to wonder in the bank accounts of Hunter Biden and Bohai Harvest RST.
Slowly but surely, the mainstream media is teaching me how to hate again. However, I don’t hate President Trump. I’m fighting the temptation to hate them instead.
John Leonard writes novels, books, and articles/blogs for American Thinker. You may find him on Facebook or his website at southernprose.com. His books are available here.