To those Republicans who take pleasure in hyping (and ridiculing) the anger of the left, and to those Democrats who pathetically work to deny it–hear this:


I am an angry American. 


When Jesus cleared the money changers from the temple, he was angry.  When Martin Luther nailed his manifesto to the Wittenberg door, he was angry.  When a band of colonists hacked apart bales of tea and dumped them into Boston Harbor, they were angry.   All three were outraged by the abuse of power, by greed and corruption that had distorted those institutions which are meant to embody goodness or justice.  


Anger energizes us.  It gives us strength when something we care about is threatened.  Urgent and demanding, it pushes us beyond the bounds of comfort and propriety and compels us to act.  At its finest, it is roused not merely by threats to self-interest, but by threats to the weak in society–those who need our protection–or by threats to goodness and truth.


If I am not angered by the death of innocents, who am I?  If I am not angered when the powerful feed billions of dollars to the powerful at the expense of the poor, who am I?  If I am not angered by the perversion of truth in the service of greed, by the violation of democratic processes in the interests of a few, by watching those in control nurture fear and hatred to strengthen their hold on society, who am I?


Anger, when tempered by reason and honed by moral sensibility is a force to be reckoned with.  I am an angry American, and I am a force to be reckoned with.




About Valerie Tarico

Seattle psychologist and writer. Author - Trusting Doubt; Deas and Other Imaginings.
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