I was having a conversation tonight about all the anger that's surfacing around this US election. It's been so divisive and the anger is so palpable. People are just a little more on edge than they usually are. We still have up until November to get through the rhetoric and the speeches, but the anger isn't going to stop at the election.
One argument that surfaced tonight was that it's healthy for the country "let it all out" and they need to explore these feelings. My response is, "Okay, but there's an emotionally intelligent, structured, safe way to do generate those discussions". A guy who has to burp at the dinner table could either just belch everything out in his wife's face and make the kids giggle, and then say "Whaaaaat? It's better than holding it in!", or he could burp quietly and discretely off to the side. One is fun, easy and "natural", but disintegrates the relationship, the other takes a bit of body awareness and a bit of work, but maintains the relationship while upholding the dignity of his wife. Now let's translate that to letting out angry feelings about Muslims and other minorities.
When people create a false dichotomy between expressing something in all its vulgarily because it's "important to tell the truth", versus repressing it to be politically correct, I wonder if they really need for the obvious to be stated- that there's a third option. They can still "let things out", but respectfully. That's why the principles of non-violent communication exist.
What do I mean by respectfully. If people are going to give voice to their anger- the libidinal energy that comes from the gut, the Enneagram's third brain, you should only be given a public platform if you are accessing your heart brain and your head brain too. I love Trump's gut energy. It truly is refreshing. But it's also sickening to look at because he can't coordinate his gut with his heart and his head and he's making himself look out of control. It's embarassing.
I guess the question is, "Is there some kind of public platform for the American people that's safe and moderated in some way for them to talk openly about what's making them so angry? You don't want to condemn anger itself- clearly it's just roiling under the surface- and you do want to give voice to those blue collar workers who legitimately haven't been able to keep up with the changing economic landscape, but how can public discourse happen in a way that brings the three brains into the equation? Who's leading that initiative?