SHANE’S EXCELLENT NEW WORDS: Divisiveness, or the condition wherein your opponent disrupts, but never you.


You may have noticed that the Floyd County Democratic Party seldom has anything positive to say about Republicans hereabouts … and quite often the other way around, too.

Not exactly a revelation, but a factoid worth noting.

It’s not a stretch to suggest that Democratic Party chairman Adam Dickey’s default setting on the urban hustings is to dissent from Republican-dominated county government, disparage the dastardly opposition, mobilize city voters and seek to produce a majority of a single ballot from the discord thus engendered. 

Rather divisive, wouldn’t you say?

Well, of course it is. Divisiveness is a hallmark of the two-party system. Both “sides” do it — and if “unity” is the aim, why are there sides on the first place?

The whole point of politics is to divide the pool of voters into more or less likely groups for delivering a sales pitch, then to secure the support of the ones who seem to lean toward one’s own side rather than the opponent’s. Divisiveness is inevitable, isn’t it? The trick is to reunify once the election’s through, and that’s a can of worms in itself.

None of this is particularly novel. I raise the topic of divisiveness (a four-syllable word, and consequently illegal in New Albanian political discourse) because we gadflies — as well as our fellow dissenters, apostasists, resisters, contrarians, non-conformists, dissidents, skeptics, objectors, protesters, refuseniks, heretics and just plain stubborn yokels — aren’t being divisive at all.

Rather we’re questioning the established order, examining the prevailing power structures and exercising free speech to do precisely what a newspaper would do if we had one: To ask questions of the pillars and expect sensible answers from them.

When the emperor prances about without any clothes, shouldn’t we point out the absurdity? And shouldn’t someone get him a damn robe, or something?

Telling the truth isn’t divisive at all. It’s obligatory, and an antidote to the prevailing Kool-Aid. The closer to the grassroots you are, the more necessary it gets.

No one ever said it would be easy. The path of least resistance is to accept the platitudes and go along to get along.

But what’s the fun in THAT?