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On Politics and Being Misunderstood

In August of last year, on my website, I posted a long list of serious concerns about Donald Trump as president. That list included the video below. Since then, the list has grown.

I’ve also loudly criticized some incorrect reporting on the part of the news media, which in some cases the media has confirmed (example) and the DNC has acknowledged. My concern was that any misinformation or bias in the media would be counterproductive and help Trump win rather than hindering his election. That criticism has incorrectly been interpreted as support of Donald Trump.

I’ve written critically about what I believe the left has done wrong that seems counterproductive. I’ve offered practical solutions, correction, and strategy that could have helped the Democratic party and progressive causes. Others were offering much the same advice (and still are). The constructive criticism offered by me and others has unfortunately been met with defensiveness. Some have incorrectly interpreted my criticism as supporting Donald Trump.

The experience was like being in a boat with some people, and expressing concern about the water leaking in, only to have people criticize and tell me there was no water leaking in and accuse me of liking other boats better – then pointing at someone else’s boat declaring how much worse it was – then further explaining that if there are any leaks in the boat, others were to blame for them.

Seeing the direction things were heading in with the election, I tried to stay positive, and consider what positive outcomes there might be if Trump were to win. This helped me in trying to not vilify all my Republican friends. Sharing these thoughts were incorrectly interpreted as me being delighted and overjoyed with Donald Trump.

On any of the above points, sadly, among some people, there was a closed mindedness and lack of interest to hear me out. I got shut down when trying to explain where I was coming from. I’m sad to have lost some friends over the past year because of my political work. I believe what I was doing was important, even at the risk of becoming ostracized. I do believe it had positive impact in bringing some improvement where needed, as well as helping to stay connected to those who think differently than I do.

Those who follow me on Facebook know that most of what I post is photography and positive uplifting videos or stories. I do most of my political and activist work elsewhere to avoid offending people or having misunderstandings. Despite that, when misunderstandings arise, then it becomes necessary to offer some clarification.

I’ve written an 11-Point Action Plan for Progressives that describes what progressivism means to me and what methods I think are most effective for achieving positive social change. I’ve also written a more personal philosophical article about my own approach to the year ahead, “Two roads diverged in a wood… and I took both paths.” I want to say thank you to those who have taken time to listen and understand along the way, and continue in friendship. It means a lot to me.

Trump Versus Trump

By Greg Johnson

Greg Johnson is a freelance writer and tech consultant in Iowa City. He is also the founder and Director of the ResourcesForLife.com website. Learn more at AboutGregJohnson.com

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