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Michael through Shepherd on dealing with those who've drunk the koolaid of the alt-right

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  • 4 weeks later...
Darlene Paulette



Your compassionate, balanced comments are worth reading. Thank you.


Darlene Paulette

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I appreciate this response. I think it depends on one's position in society and our distance from being targets of these Right Wing ideologies as to how well these tactics would work. This "how-to" would never work for me, but I hope it helps someone else. I would love to feel some kind of peace in imaginary conversations, getting on with my life while waiting for bigotry to die or somehow be okay with navigating the landmines of the compartmentalized and delusional brain of a bigot, but this doesn't feel right.


But the truth is that nothing is going to feel right for how we deal with such an avalanche of bigotry and hate, especially when it is revealed to be a part of loved ones. Nothing is going to feel right because bigotry forces us to draw on parts of ourselves that are not natural to people who are inclusive, loving, progressive, and ethical. It feels wrong to reject them and it feels wrong to accept them. I try to straddle a middle ground of loving from a distance.


I suppose the gentlest way to navigate all of this madness is to use the "how-to" shared here, since it helps keep us at a distance. For those of us who don't have that option of distance, we have to use other tactics, like:

  • drawing hard lines on clear boundaries
  • communicating effectively and loudly in support of marginalized peoples
  • being willing to call out and hold accountable those who practice or express hateful ideologies, even if they are family
  • removing and shutting bigots out from our personal space, however much we may love or accept them as relatives or acquaintances
  • etc.

I'm only adding this because I think it's important to understand that our life circumstances and different positions in society often dictate the type of strategy we have to/are able to use for dealing with those who wish to harm others/us. Sometimes those who have to deal with the messier parts of the fight get double the weight of this madness because our peers try to tell us "to be nice," "just accept them," "that's not loving" or "so much for being an old soul" or "you are just adding to the fear" or "you aren't helping the racists by banning them" or "it doesn't matter if they are racist, they are family and you should love them..." Etc. etc... That kind of stuff. 


Whatever works for all of you, do what you have to do to manage your sanity, heart, and head. 

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