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Mon Dec 5, 2022, 03:50 AM

I've always thought that people are basically good mostly everywhere

That when you scratch the surface of Americans you would find we care about children, we care about our neighbors, our communities, we care about kidsí futures - not just our own kids but everybodyís kids.

I always thought our hearts were good and people were kind mostly. I still hold on to that idea.

But it is dinged up more than a bit by the 30% /x of this country on the extreme right. If I ever have to leave the islands Iíd always thought Iíd find a nice quiet neighborhood in America. Now Iím not so sure.

Is the meanness we are reading about and watching something that you see changing people where you are, or are they still mostly kind?

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Reply I've always thought that people are basically good mostly everywhere (Original post)
mahina Dec 2022 OP
elleng Dec 2022 #1
mahina Dec 2022 #2
ShepKat Dec 2022 #9
brush Dec 2022 #3
GoodRaisin Dec 2022 #30
TreasonousBastard Dec 2022 #4
Jamastiene Dec 2022 #5
Walleye Dec 2022 #16
Jamastiene Dec 2022 #24
Mister Ed Dec 2022 #6
demigoddess Dec 2022 #38
Mister Ed Dec 2022 #40
Cosmocat Dec 2022 #7
LuckyCharms Dec 2022 #8
betsuni Dec 2022 #10
malaise Dec 2022 #11
murielm99 Dec 2022 #12
malaise Dec 2022 #14
moonscape Dec 2022 #20
malaise Dec 2022 #21
mahina Dec 2022 #27
malaise Dec 2022 #37
OldBaldy1701E Dec 2022 #13
secondwind Dec 2022 #15
Hortensis Dec 2022 #17
shrike3 Dec 2022 #26
Hortensis Dec 2022 #39
mahina Dec 2022 #28
Hortensis Dec 2022 #36
Roisin Ni Fiachra Dec 2022 #18
dalton99a Dec 2022 #19
JanMichael Dec 2022 #43
Sympthsical Dec 2022 #22
mahina Dec 2022 #35
Lulu KC Feb 2023 #46
Irish_Dem Dec 2022 #23
dalton99a Dec 2022 #34
Prairie_Seagull Dec 2022 #25
shrike3 Dec 2022 #29
traitorsgalore Dec 2022 #31
Elessar Zappa Dec 2022 #32
mahina Dec 2022 #33
RobertMcNamara Dec 2022 #41
Initech Dec 2022 #42
Stuart G Dec 2022 #44
Stuart G Dec 2022 #45

Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 03:56 AM

1. Ditto (tho I'm not on an island.)

I've lost much of the 'faith' I ever had in people's 'kindness,' and rationality.'

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Response to elleng (Reply #1)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 04:02 AM

2. Sorry mate

(((Elleng)))

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Response to elleng (Reply #1)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 06:22 AM

9. ditto

I used to laugh at my cup that says the more people I meet, the more I like my dog... but it's becoming more true by the day

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 04:04 AM

3. Our current crop of republicans are exceptions to that. They've shown that they tolerate...

Last edited Mon Dec 5, 2022, 05:34 AM - Edit history (1)

evil in their party and many openly support it. trump.

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Response to brush (Reply #3)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:24 PM

30. Yep. When they show you who they are, believe them.

ĎNuff said about that.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 04:17 AM

4. I've never been sure either way. I suspect there is some cosmic...

balance between "good" and "evil", but we haven't seen the good to balance the evil of Hitler or the Axis armies.

I suppose in the end good and evil are two sides of the same coin and one cannot exist without the other.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 04:31 AM

5. I live in an area where they just shot up the power substations to stop a drag show

that was a charity benefit concert to raise money for the local food banks. I have seen footage of them continuing the show despite the power outage and singing a capella. NO children were there. So, no children were harmed in the making of that benefit concert. Them, I have faith in.

Some are saying the reason for the attack was because the locals wanted to stop the show. Seeing comments from most where I live, they are still complaining about a drag show and saying they wanted to harm children. Claiming children were at the show. God this and God that. 40k people without power until at least Thursday on the coldest nights we've had so far...and all they can do is complain about the LGBTQ community and make up more "grooming" hysteria.

One woman even bragged that was the reason and more god hates my community, yadda yadda yadda, rinse, repeat. She was also a J6 insurrectionist who isn't in jail for her part in that already. I wonder why....She also is banned from all parks in Moore County because she kept going and removing the Caution tape during the Covid lockdown. She did it once and they talked to her, thinking that might keep her from doing it again. She did it again, just to be an asshole.

Based on my experiences with most in this area? I've been jaded on the human species for a while now. I have zero faith in the human species to be mostly good, at least where I live. I have lived as an out gay women since the late 80s here. Been through hell and back, assaulted various ways, cornered in public by groups of them preaching at me and calling me a demon, while they continue to tell me I'm going to hell. I no longer fear or dread hell. I will finally be away from them and according to them, it seems only those of us in the LGBTQ community are going there. So, none of them will be there? Fine. It will be an upgrade. To finally be away from them forever. Sign me up.

People being mostly good? I have zero faith in that, sadly. Maybe some, but not most.

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Response to Jamastiene (Reply #5)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 08:29 AM

16. I get the feeling that the motive was stopping the drag show and it's being covered up

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Response to Walleye (Reply #16)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 01:34 PM

24. They already have found photos with the woman who bragged about it

and the sheriff. It's being covered up.

Back in the 90s, they covered up the racism that caused the Imperial Foods fire that killed 25 people, cooked them alive. The reason they padlocked those doors was because they were afraid the local black neighborhoods in Hamlet (which is in one county south from Moore County) would steal their precious chicken.

That's how they do it in this area. While mainstream media is staying on them, they will cover up and stall and lie and talk about how holier than thou religious they are, then when the news cycle moves onto something else, they go back to business as usual.

The people in this area never change.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 04:53 AM

6. This echoes the disillusionment of a German gentleman that I know.

Roland is a man in his late sixties. At supper a few months ago, he said quietly and sadly that he had admired Americans all his life and believed that we were just a little bit better at heart than people elsewhere in the world, but that core belief of his had been shattered by MAGA.

To me, that is the most poignant and shameful thing about our national experience over these past seven years: the knowledge that we have disillusioned millions like Roland, all over the world, who had admired our people and our nation. We have shamefully abdicated our position of world leadership.

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Response to Mister Ed (Reply #6)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 09:06 PM

38. Ive been wondering what other peoples have been thinking of us, also.

makes me feel ashamed of a huge segment of our country. Lived in France in the 50s and you should hear what their government did for them back then.

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Response to demigoddess (Reply #38)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 10:15 PM

40. We have a couple of dear friends in Australia as well.

They've tried to be polite about it, but at one point in Trump's presidency they told us, "Well, just so you know: the world is laughing at you."

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 05:19 AM

7. It's been decades of slowly chipping away

At the kindness and decency through right wing propaganda.

They have completely desensitized most of our country to hatred and mean spiritedness.

People aren't victims, though. There has to be a willing submission to it at some point. Past that they succumb to it and are pretty much lost.

They are told THEY are victims, and that justifies everything.

It's Germany early 1930s. Hard to see how we avoid a lot of what comes after that.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 05:30 AM

8. There are all kinds of people, ranging from extremely good to

extremely bad... with all degrees of "goodness" and "badness" in-between.

My thought process used to be "everyone is a good person until they prove otherwise".

Unfortunately, my thought process has now seemed to change to "everyone is a bad person, until they prove otherwise".

I think this change in my philosophy has to do with self-preservation.

I'm obviously shocked and dismayed at what I believe to be an unacceptable percentage of "bad", "evil", or "hopelessly stupid" people that exist in this country. Prior to Trump, it seemed that they pretty much kept their mouths shut, so they were not as blatant and apparent. Now, it's like Pandora's box has been opened, and they seem to be coming out of the woodwork and exposing their true selves.

All of that being said, I try to be polite to everyone, in spite of what my suspicions about people's motives may be. However, once they prove themselves to be unworthy of my respect, I treat them the way I personally feel they deserve to be treated.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 06:28 AM

10. Depends on the culture.

American culture encourages selfishness, individualism instead of society.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 06:54 AM

11. I've learned that there are greedy, selfish, dishonest and even evil folks

among us.
Here's a very simple example of dishonesty. I went into a bill paying establishment last week. There were only about five of us in there. A woman behind me found an earring and said to the other woman who was leaving I think you dropped an earring. The woman stopped and took it. Instinctively I felt my ear and knew it was my favorite pearl and said to the original lady - that is mine. She immediately took it back from the woman who was walking off with what was clearly not hers. She saw the other one on my ear and said why are people so dishonest. Why couldn't she just say - that's not mine.

This is a trivial example but that woman was perfectly willing to steal my earring.

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Response to malaise (Reply #11)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 07:14 AM

12. What the heck would she do

with one earring? Geeze.

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Response to murielm99 (Reply #12)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 07:46 AM

14. Give her son or her man for Christmas?

That was all my friends and I could come up with when one of them asked the same question. 😀😀

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Response to malaise (Reply #11)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 10:22 AM

20. Unreal.

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Response to moonscape (Reply #20)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 10:33 AM

21. Unreal indeed

Stealing for stealing sake

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Response to malaise (Reply #11)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:17 PM

27. Wow.

Thanks Malaise. Iím glad you got your pearl earring back.

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Response to mahina (Reply #27)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 08:58 PM

37. You know what pissed me off

Itís not even expensive

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 07:41 AM

13. Americans are opportunistic.

It is ingrained in out psyche. We will be nice if it gets us something, and we will be mean if that gets us something. After almost 60 years as someone who has always been seen as 'bad' by the 'normal' population, I can now tell you that 'normal' means evil, selfish bastards. The 'kind, nice people' have become the minority because they have all been either taken advantage of and ruined, or left out in the cold because of reasons (read: not like us'). As a good friend used to say: "People suck. ALL people suck. But, a few of us realize that we suck and try to not suck to bad." Unfortunately, that few has gotten fewer and fewer as time has passed. I can only hope that great societal shift comes along and changes this. But, I won't see any of that.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 08:23 AM

15. I arrived last week from DR, back to the states for a few months.

Just for a while. I love the islands, etc. But Christmas isnít Christmas without freezing temps and snow. Love it! ❤️

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 08:49 AM

17. :) You've hit on a basic difference between liberal and conservative personality.

In general, conservatives have a darker view of human nature and tend to believe people will behave badly if not required to behave better. (There's a LOT of explanation of conservative political choices in this.)

I remember learning to my surprise 25 years ago that a very conservative business owner kept the supply closet locked not because she considered her staff a bunch of contemptible thieves, but to maintain order by creating a structure that helped the staff not slip into wrong behavior. She liked and respected her staff (who knew?!) and was doing her duty to herself and them as she saw it.

Compared to my own more optimistic, typical liberal, "most people are basically good" attitude, the conservatives have turned out to be more right. But I think that's more because they "know" themselves better than I did and, like most of us, tend to evaluate others by themselves. Not that the left are exactly extempt, but most liberals have significantly less "dark" potential though still there. The farther "illiberal" left, the less like liberals.

Most people want to be good, we know that!, but too often get confused about what that is and end up not knowing. Whatever internal compasses we might have, too many are no match for insidious political manipulation of our notions of right and wrong and need to go along with our tribe.

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #17)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:16 PM

26. I'm liberal, and I'm afraid I've never believed that most people are basically good.


From life experience. However, I want a good society and good things to happen to people, which is why I am liberal.

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Response to shrike3 (Reply #26)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 09:48 PM

39. :) Umhmm, sounds pretty liberal and nice to me.

Those descriptions I tried to explain are general comparisons between mankind's two main personality types, while individuals are goulashes of every possible combination in every possible degree. I believe all traits are shared by liberals and conservatives, just some, in general, to sufficiently differing degrees in each type to allow defining by differences. Like tendency to rejection v tendency to acceptance of differences, etc.

I'd thought my own childhood didn't allow much in the way of pollyannaish delusions to develop, and I never thought "it" couldn't happen here, but I still gravely underestimated certain potentials. (!) In the 1980s-90s conservative-dominated circles we associated with started becoming increasingly critical and even hostile, while more liberal ones were unchanged, and we were wondering what was happening but still accepting and wanting to be friends. Clueless just a bit?! This was before I set out to learn what was going on.

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #17)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:18 PM

28. That's some insight.

Mahalo Hortensis.

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Response to mahina (Reply #28)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 04:15 PM

36. I'm afraid that woman was the reason I finally went and got

some books on the psychology and poiltical thinking of conservatives in general to find out what on earth was going on with them. She and her husband were such control freaks that keeping that need fed cost them a lot in operating costs and seriously impeded production and morale.

I didn't ask the business owner to explain herself, I wanted professionals to do it. Turned out I could almost like and almost respect her when I understood her better. It was the 1990s and more and more in our circles were becoming no longer friends. Same for them. Oh, they have a different way of seeing morality that helps makes sense of their...

But then came the aughts and post-2008s.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 09:09 AM

18. I avoid MAGAt fascists to the greatest degree possible.

The darkness behind their eyes scares the shit out of me.

Everyone else is pretty much still basically kind

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 09:31 AM

19. Confucius said, "People suck"

A French translation: "L'enfer, c'est les autres" - Jean-Paul Sartre
("Hell is other people" )

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Response to dalton99a (Reply #19)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 11:51 PM

43. No Exit is fabulous.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 11:21 AM

22. Social media highly exaggerates and magnifies the bad

Now every dumb story in a nation of 340 million people is magnified.

Most people go to work, raise their kids, hang out with their families and friends, and just motor along within their sphere.

The assholes get a highlighter because it makes for a better story, reinforces one's beliefs, or scores a political point - there are always reasons some stories are spread around while others are ignored or greatly minimized. It's so you can see the world as they do - and that world oftentimes involves a lot of fear. The fearful will post more on the internet, because they want you to be as afraid as they are. Shut-ins and the socially maladjusted.

Plus the media who do it for clicks and eyeballs.

Meanwhile, most normal well-adjusted people just get on with things.

America is not a terrible country. I've traveled a lot and lived abroad quite a bit, and people who think our country is just the worst thing ever have clearly - clearly - not spent a lot of time outside of it, if ever.

Just think on this. What story is going to get more views. If I post about how my neighbor's dog got into my yard and decided to tip over my leaf cans. Or, I went to the grocery store and got INTO IT with the MAGA CASHIER and I told that person ALL THE THINGS YOU THINK POLITICALLY and practically DESTROYED the INTERNET in telling everyone how expertly I dismantled that cashier's entire worldview and reason for existing!!!!!!!1111!!!

I prefer the dog messing with my cans.

But there's not a lot of attention in it.

People really want and like attention.

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Response to Sympthsical (Reply #22)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:50 PM

35. Thinking about the everyday people who take care of others

Good neighbors who bring food when itís needed, help each other in a million ways all round us. Strangers and family and friends.

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Response to mahina (Reply #35)

Tue Feb 14, 2023, 08:39 AM

46. A great question

You've given me food for thought and reflection.

The type of kindness that makes people bring meals when you're sick and helps you with other things really depends on the neighborhood and how outgoing you are in getting to know your neighbors. I live in a neighborhood populated not by right wingers, as far as I know, and the neighbors are lovely. We are very fortunate where we are. There are also walking paths here, which makes people interact more than in any neighborhood I've lived in before, ever. (I think the being outside in itself makes the people more cheerful and friendly, too.)

In our last two neighborhoods, people were nice but didn't engage much. We barely knew most of them, but we also didn't attend the Catholic churches that were really the centers of the neighborhoods (especially if you had kids who attended the school, which ours did not). There were some signs for Republican candidates in one of them, but it was generally moderate. Even the Trumpers were friendly neighbors (despite our conflicting signs). But the relationships were superficial, for us. My husband and I both went through surgeries in both neighborhoods and I don't remember anyone helping out in any way through those unless they were also Facebook friends and signed up for meal trains organized by a non-neighbor friend.

On a day-to-day basis, I see evidence of very bad manners only while driving and I see it in litter on streets. I think it would be impossible to classify the people misbehaving in these ways politically--many may even be oblivious to politics. In person, all strangers I encounter enough to speak to are nice and kind, or at least polite, if a bit tired.

(I currently live in the Midwest, a blue city in a red state, middle class.)

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 11:38 AM

23. Americans do not value human life or quality of life.

There are too many examples to list but here are a few:

1. America's children are slaughtered in their classrooms.
A country which does not protect its children is a failed country and cares nothing about human life.

2. In the US, medication and healthcare are not affordable to many.
We are a country which does not value human life and does not care if people suffer or die.

3. Compared to other modern countries, American sick leave, vacation, work conditions are a disgrace.
Also people work at minimum wage jobs which do not allow a decent standard of living.

4. During a deadly, global pandemic, many Americans refused to mask or quarantine.
There was no concern for human life.

5. State governments have made it illegal to treat seriously ill women.
And will vilify and jail doctors who try to save their lives.

6. In the US, college is unaffordable for most young people.
Going into huge debt is the norm to obtain an education which would provide an ability to have a decent life.
The US does not value education or people supporting themselves.

The reality is that America has only one deeply rooted value: wealth, becoming rich, and profit above all else.

American lives, quality of life are not American values.



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Response to Irish_Dem (Reply #23)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:48 PM

34. +1

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:13 PM

25. By far not the first time this discussion/observation has been made.

Many have probably already explored Rousseau, Kant and Hegel. But many others have an opinion.

For me, it's a practical thing. I feel people will live up or down to our expectations of them. In the short term anyway,,, Mostly.

What kind of world would we be living in if we allow evil, in very large numbers, to take root. Needs to be tamped down when exposed. Yes, it's easy for me to say.

I notice the same as most everyone here but am a bit worried to give it voice.

Are people basically good or bad? For my sanity (rose colored glasses or not) I prefer to see mostly the good while recognizing the bad.

Let hope the pendulum is in the process of swinging back.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:18 PM

29. This kind of discussion makes me think of Anne Frank.


"People are good at heart." Did she still feel that way, at the end?

I do not recall ever believing people are good at heart. Life experience, I guess. However, I want people treated well, which is why I am liberal, I guess.

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Response to mahina (Original post)


Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:45 PM

32. I still find most people are basically good.

I believe they outnumber the assholes by a good amount.

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Response to Elessar Zappa (Reply #32)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 02:48 PM

33. Here's a hope.

How would our actions change otherwise? What would we do differently?

Thereís times when we donít have control over what happens in our lives, times we have to rely on others in trust.

Iím going to think about that for a little while

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 10:21 PM

41. People are still mostly good

 

It's true that there are people in the U.S. who make it difficult to view America as a place of kindness and compassion. But I think it's important to remember that the majority of Americans are still kind and caring people. As you said, when you scratch beneath the surface, you'll find that most people are concerned about their neighbors, their communities, and the future of all children. I haven't seen any major changes in people's attitudes towards others in my community, and I still believe that kindness and compassion are the values that define the American spirit.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Mon Dec 5, 2022, 11:06 PM

42. The extremists are getting more extreme.

It's absolutely scary that we have religious terrorists and Nazis operating on American soil. I seriously draw the line at Holocaust denial. I have personally never been more scared of the direction that this country is heading in than I am right now.

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Response to mahina (Original post)

Tue Dec 6, 2022, 12:06 AM

44. You meet some good & some bad. Trump was very "BAD"... BIDEN is VERY GOOD & CARES ABOUT PEOPLE.

HOW did we get such opposites. That ain't up to me, I voted for Hilary Clinton., and so did my state: Illinois

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Response to mahina (Original post)

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