SEVERE WX : Winter Weather Advisory View Alerts

Love and Washington don't mix

I do not believe love is the answer. I want to. But love, American style, is the kind of love I can live without. Lik...

Posted: Jan 18, 2018 7:54 AM
Updated: Jan 18, 2018 7:54 AM

I do not believe love is the answer. I want to. But love, American style, is the kind of love I can live without. Like everything else in our culture, love has become politicized.

Maybe anti-Trumpers are to blame. After all, they used love to score political points. Those "Love Trumps Hate" signs were ubiquitous during the 2016 campaign. I witnessed many progressive rallies, filled with people preaching love for certain groups of people, but disdain for anyone who dared to be open to a Trump candidacy.

And many pro-Trumpers I talked with during the campaign laughed at those signs and declarations. Love won't solve the loss of manufacturing jobs or increase middle class wages, they told me.

But at least one conservative had used the word "love" to further his agenda, too. In September, when President Donald Trump said he would not extend protections for Dreamers, people who were brought here as children by undocumented parents, he followed up by saying, "I have a love for these people" and that he hoped Congress will be able to help them.

Fast forward to January 9, and Trump reiterated that any immigration bill should be a "bill of love, truly."

Dreamers appreciated Trump's sentiment. For many, this is the only country they've ever known, and they desperately want to become productive American citizens.

But a bill of love appears not to be. Two days after this remark, Trump held a second, untelevised White House meeting and, instead, in his allies' words, used "tough language." According to others, Trump even used the word "shithole" (or "shithouse," by some accounts) in an effort to drive a hard bargain on immigration reform.

Love is now "off the table." In fact, in Wednesday's hearing before the Senate, Trump's Homeland Security Secretary, Kirstjen Nielsen, denied her boss ever used that term.

"I don't remember him saying the word 'love,'" Nielsen said. "I remember him saying 'care.'" Secretary Nielsen actually said this under oath to Senator Lindsey Graham during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. Never mind that her boss made the love remark in a nationally televised, bipartisan White House meeting.

It seems "love" is now a politically toxic word in any debate involving immigration or Dreamers, unless it's preceded by the word "tough." Maybe tough love best describes love, American style. Love the Dreamers, but they have to go because they have to pay a price for being here illegally.

Why not just leave love out of it? Give me cold, hard logic. I don't care if love ultimately defeated Voldemort in Harry Potter's world, love is clearly not the answer in hyperpartisan America. And since my cynical self is on fire, I'll take it a step farther. Love is not at the top of the list when it comes to our personal lives either. In fact, single Americans now make up more than half of the adult population for the first time since the Bureau of Labor Statistics began tracking this data in 1976.

And community encounters? They're so... 1974. Back then, 61% of Americans hung out with their neighbors at least once a month. Today, and be honest: how many of you know your neighbor well enough to knock on the door, unannounced, and sit down for a cup of coffee? Pew Research shows less than half of Americans say they spend social evenings with their neighbors once a month.

I have grown tired of how we use the word "love" so carelessly. Either you care about another human being, or you don't. Love -- in its purest form -- is not weak; it's hard because it's selfless. And, as the saying goes, its presence is verified through actions, not through words.

So, listen up, politicians of all stripes. Unless you're willing to exhibit the courage it takes to truly carry out an act of love -- spare me the phony-fest.

It cheapens all of us. Not least of all our presidency.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 195884

Reported Deaths: 2590
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah38744593
Washington25768233
Marion22259309
Clackamas17723214
Lane13154149
Jackson10959141
Deschutes920075
Umatilla823684
Linn503468
Yamhill450376
Klamath449464
Polk379453
Malheur353063
Josephine337271
Douglas330971
Benton313320
Jefferson222237
Coos209835
Columbia176029
Union145123
Lincoln138921
Wasco138428
Hood River119631
Crook114022
Morrow111316
Clatsop9958
Baker96014
Tillamook6523
Curry64710
Grant5236
Lake4557
Harney3498
Wallowa1855
Gilliam631
Sherman581
Wheeler321
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3769827

Reported Deaths: 62699
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles123756124120
Riverside2997934594
San Bernardino2972614724
San Diego2791453742
Orange2712965031
Santa Clara1190982098
Kern1093201376
Sacramento1051641693
Fresno1019871690
Alameda881571668
Ventura811021017
San Joaquin733101394
Contra Costa68976805
Stanislaus623101061
Tulare49830840
Monterey43662382
San Mateo42063570
San Francisco36808546
Santa Barbara34391459
Solano33011253
Merced31919461
Sonoma30071321
Imperial28516729
Kings23017246
Placer22720293
San Luis Obispo21308260
Madera16483242
Santa Cruz16275206
Marin14079227
Yolo13938211
Shasta12175226
Butte12140192
El Dorado10193113
Napa989182
Sutter9445113
Yuba628549
San Benito607463
Lassen570624
Tehama559063
Nevada475575
Tuolumne413967
Humboldt413542
Mendocino412749
Amador366747
Lake348943
Glenn240125
Siskiyou225525
Colusa223616
Calaveras213654
Inyo142838
Del Norte13988
Mono12844
Plumas7186
Modoc5014
Mariposa4507
Trinity4025
Sierra1120
Alpine880
Unassigned360
Medford
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 47°
Feels Like: 66°
Brookings
Partly Cloudy
53° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 53°
Crater Lake
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 28°
Feels Like: 66°
Grants Pass
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 49°
Feels Like: 66°
Klamath Falls
Partly Cloudy
62° wxIcon
Hi: 62° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 62°
Cool & windy Wednesday with shower chances
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events