Tuesday, January 25, 2011

An Encounter of the Nasty Kind

Being that I live in Tucson, and not just anywhere, but very close to where the shooting here occurred, people here have been pretty emotionally involved. It is not surprising then, that I would encounter clients who want or need to discuss it. Our standard procedure is to never discuss politics, religion or sex with our clients. And generally, I wouldn't want to anyway. And up until this past week, no discussions about the shooting event took that kind of a turn. Mainly people just wanted to express their feelings of sadness.

But the other day I had a client (not a regular) who said she was working at one of the hospitals that victims were sent to. She was working at her desk job there. When reports started coming in of what had happened she said she was sad to hear that Giffords had been shot because she actually liked her. I really wish she had stopped right there. But no, she felt compelled to then tell me that if she had heard that Raul Grijalva, a Democrat Representative here, had been shot she would have cheered. Yup....that's precisely what she said. CHEERED. About hearing that another human being had been shot. She explained to me that she was a registered Republican after all.

I don't care what your F***ing politics are. It is NEVER okay to cheer for the shooting of someone's spouse, parent, child, friend, etc. And then to credit that to your political party? What does that say about you and your party of choice? And why would you proudly share that with a stranger who has their hands in the vicinity of your neck??? It's lucky for her that I was close to wrapping things up anyway. I seriously don't think I could have continued to give her a decent massage after that. I felt myself just go limp. I did not verbally respond at all (there's nothing nice I could have said). I wanted to get very far away from her. If I was working for myself and encountered a client like that I would refuse any future services to them.

Politics and rhetoric may not have played any part in the shooting (and I truly don't believe that it did) but you cannot convince me that politics and rhetoric are not fueling a feeding frenzy among American citizens that results in a general atmosphere of hate for anyone that believes differently from yourself. I feel grateful that for the most part the people here have been incredibly good and kind-hearted through the entire ordeal. But what I've heard coming out of the mouths of right-wing idiots on the national scene has done nothing to change my mind about their overall lack of compassion and decency. One would think they might have taken an opportunity like this to try to bolster their images a little bit? I just don't get them. I truly don't.

I realize that we are all in different places on our journeys. Some are much farther along than others. I try to have patience for those obviously unaware. I, myself, have far enough to go and I can only live my own life. But for the love of God, I am so completely frustrated by just how bad humanity still is. I sometimes am so ashamed to be an American. It makes me feel ill. I want to run away and escape. But of course I know there is no perfect paradise that is conflict-free. Or idiot-free. Or scum-bag-free. Or deranged-looney-free. All I can do is to keep my head where it needs to be, surround myself with as many like-minded people as possible, and practice what I preach (LOVE is the answer).

But to my nasty client this is what I wish I could say: Instead of getting a massage, I recommend that you see a psychotherapist and get your shit together a little!

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