How did we get from the Age of Enlightenment that so inspired Jefferson and Franklin to a society tantalized by an anti-Semitic rocker with a hard-on for killing animals and an over-zealous love affair with the right to bear arms?
Ultra Right-winger Ted Nugent recently posted an anti-Semitic message on Facebook accusing Jews of trying to take away his guns. Nugent, a National Rifle Association (NRA) board member, posted an image of politicians such as Michael Bloomberg, Senator Dianne Feinstein, Senator Charles Schumer, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel and others, each beside an Israeli flag, with the headline, “So who is really behind gun control?”
His missive goes on to say, “Know these punks. They hate freedom, they hate good over evil…”.
In a follow-up post, Nugent continued his rant.
“Just when you hope that mankind couldn’t possibly get any dumber or more dishonest, super Freaks rise to the occasion. What sort of racist prejudiced (piece of sh--) could possibly not know that Jews for gun control are Nazis in disguise?”.
I can’t prove it, but I’m willing to bet Nugent doesn’t ride a bicycle very often, if at all. My guess? When he’s not stalking game, he’s driving a gas-guzzling SUV.
If he did ride a bicycle, he might better appreciate the amazing places – without and within – it can take you. Enjoying nature, rolling through it, without feeling the need to shoot guns at it, is an activity that can pacify a restless, angry spirit. Even if you‘re an urban cyclist, just being aware of how your body feels as you pedal, can be a calming, edifying experience. You can feel and hear your heart beat as you bike.
Cycling may not save our world, but with each commute on two wheels instead of four, we choose progress over retreat, beauty over decay. We can all be better stewards for the environment.
As global citizens, we would do well to remember the Age of Enlightenment celebrated tolerance and reason, not the ugliness of ignorance and hatred.
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