Living in Zombieland

I hardly know where to begin this post.  What typically drives an essay is rage.

I’ve always had a temper, and what makes me maddest are bullies.  When the strong pick on the weak is when my rage gets activated.  I’ve hated bullies since before I even knew what the word was….but then, I was the fourth of five children.  And small.  And sensitive.  I heard the words “you’re too sensitive” repeatedly during my childhood.  For the record, I prefer the term “exquisitely tuned”.  Yes, there is a price to pay.

Anger is healthy.  I believe our emotions are natural and right; they are not actions, and thus we do ourselves a favor by feeling them.  Mostly, it seems, we try not to feel, unless it’s pleasure.  Then, we can’t get enough.

Empathy is a double edged sword, because empathy is putting yourself in another’s place as best as you can.  If the other is suffering, well, you get to suffer, too.

In the inner city, there is a name for making kids have less empathy, to “harden” them for life:  Crimping.  It’s considered a kindness, because life is so hard for those who can feel.

Empathy seems to be another dwindling resource, one we actively work to reduce.  There are real evolutionary reasons for this, of course.  One must be able to kill another in order to eat, to live.

We’ve been taught, pretty systematically, to hate nature because of the “in your face” sort of killing that has to happen.  I watched a Cooper’s Hawk nail a Mourning Dove the other morning.  He or she swooped in, caught a slow bird, and sat on it as it flailed and struggled.  I watched it begin to eat the other bird while it was still breathing.

The hawk had no motive, other than to exist.  It had no “hatred” of the mourning dove, it had no feelings at all, that I could see, other than hunger.

We humans come up with all kinds of stories to explain or justify our decreasing ability to feel.   So we can begin to think, if it’s not happening to me, it’s not happening.  If it doesn’t affect me directly, no need to see it, think about it, feel it.  After all, who wants to be labelled a bleeding heart?

We learn to crimp ourselves, to systematically reduce our sensitivity to our environment.  We are turning ourselves, pretty cheerfully as far as I can tell, into zombies.  Zombies have no emotions at all, a fairly comfortable existence when you are at the top of the food chain.

I can point to all kinds of evidence to support this, from police shooting, beating and/or tasering unarmed people to a woman who made her living filming her torture of animals for others sexual pleasure.  Only people utterly emotionless, utterly disconnected from empathy, can do these things.  These are horrible acts.

Funding lies about climate change while at the same time knowing that climate change is real and planning how to make money on the destruction…..that seems kinda horrible.

Denying children access to nutritious hot meals at school is an empathy-less act.  Denying quality education, for that matter, is zombie-like.  Saying that you are “pro-life” as you do these things…..yep, zombie logic.

We accept all of these things as if they are normal.

Where does it end?  No place good.  In Zombieland, we are all commodities.

 

 

 

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5 Responses to Living in Zombieland

  1. Interesting! We dread pain so much that we resort to zombie logic to avoid it. How will we ever enjoy today when we are so fearful of our future? How can we live when we choose to deaden our senses? Oh, now I get it. We join the GOP (aka Grieving Old People).

  2. paulineschneider4p says:

    Sunday night, after years of fighting the zombies, Michael C. Ruppert lost the battle.
    As Guy McPherson put it, “They [zombies] put the gun in his hand, loaded it, aimed it, and let him pull the trigger.”
    Because he told the truth.

    We must never let anyone get away with saying he chose that path. He was a deeply empathetic soul, compassionate, thoughtful and honest. You would be hard pressed to find a person as honest. Which is why Guy was one of the last people he spoke to, telling him repeatedly how much he loved Guy and his courage.
    We, Guy and I, realized only too late, it was to say goodbye. We cried together last night at the terrible news.
    The zombies didnt kill Michael’s soul, but they made it impossible for him to live free. They punished him for telling us the truth.
    “Live free or die” takes on a new meaning now.

    • igotsomethin says:

      Pauline, my condolences. I didn’t know Mike, didn’t know a thing about him. But to say he didn’t choose his path is disrespectful of his choice, don’t you think? Very, very few “live free” in this world of our creation.

      Again, sorry for your loss. He doesn’t suffer anymore now.

      • paulineschneider4p says:

        It is an illusion to see the options between abyss and torture as a “choice”.
        It is also an illusion to think of him at peace at last.

        If there is an after life, and we must only assume there is not, maybe he is at peace. We will never know.
        The reality is far more tragic; the zombies of which you spoke so eloquently, gave him little choice.
        Stating this truth follows in his footsteps of truthtelling even when people don’t like the truths or misunderstand.
        It is the furthest thing from disrespecting him.

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