Cognitive Dissonance

By The Oracle

Definition: Psychological conflict resulting from incongruous beliefs and attitudes held simultaneously.

Merriam Webster Dictionary

I have neglected to write in the last month because I have been flabbergasted by what I have seen going on around me.  The election was not a surprise.  I knew that President Cheeto could win.  I was just really hoping he wouldn’t.  I didn’t think he had the temperament or the intelligence to be a good president, and as time goes on, I don’t think my hypothesis was wrong.  Donald Trump is going to make a bad president, but what concerns me is why so many of my fellow Americans are happy about it.

I have been thinking about this in the weeks since the election, and I have come to the conclusion that America has a cognitive dissonance problem.  Citizens can ignore facts and information if they don’t fit in with their world view.  People edit what they pay attention to, so that they can continue to think a certain way.

Evangelicals could vote for Trump because it meant he could pick a Supreme Court Judge that would undo Roe vs. Wade or destroy marriage equality.  I heard from several people that they were glad that God would again be in the White House.  Trump was their man.  It didn’t matter that he bragged about groping women.  It didn’t matter that he was on his third marriage because of infidelity.   They were totally able to ignore that Obama and his family went to church on a regular basis, and that Hillary Clinton was a former Sunday school teacher who communicated daily with with her pastor.  They were so happy that Christian values would again be “in charge” that they were willing to alter their thought patterns to fit.

I overheard a lady say she couldn’t vote for Hillary because she was going to repeal the Second Amendment of the Constitution.  I was speechless.  One: the president can’t do this.  Congress would have to do it, and then the States would have to ratify it.  It would take a huge effort to remove the Second Amendment.  Clinton mentioned some sensible suggestions on background checks, but I never heard that one of her platforms was taking away anyone’s guns.

I’ve heard from several sources that many saw Trump as a champion of the working man.  He was going to protect jobs from moving to other countries and create new jobs.  One: Presidents have very few options when it comes to keeping corporations from moving.  They can make it attractive for companies to stay, but it’s very hard to penalize multinational corporations.  Two: Donald Trump is not in the business of protecting workers.  Just ask any of the employees of his any of the businesses he runs.  His businesses have been sued several times for violating workers’ rights.  He has not a clue what happens to the working man.  But he made white men feel important, and he promised them jobs, so they were willing to overlook the fact the only thing Donald Trump wants to enrich is himself and those like him.  (All you have to do is look at his cabinet picks to figure that out.)

His whole campaign is a shell game.  “Make America Great Again”?!  He’s a billionaire married to a model.  He’s proven himself a financial failure several times spectacularly yet has managed to still hold onto a fortune.  He’s also starred on a television series, and he will now be president.  If America isn’t great for Donald Trump, who is it great for?  I shouldn’t be surprised of the cognitive dissonance of Trump supporters.  Frankly, it starts at the top.  I’m only worried about when it wears off, and everyone wakes up.  Eventually, the show ends, and you just have to clean up the mess.

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