Phobias, Fears and Unicorns

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If you want to vilify someone just tack on a phobia label. These days fear of anything makes us the villain, the bad actor, the malevolent one.

Leaders, whether elected, chosen or self appointed, demonize fear as a tonic to assuage the masses of every threat. It’s meant to dull us down to a state of inactivity, unprepared to respond if and when that which we fear strikes. 

The hue and cry from government leaders these days about having no fear simply does not resonate with me. It’s dumb and designed to dull down other senses to danger. It’s overtly manipulative and in appealing to our self image, it’s used to promote a distinct agenda. If we should not be phobic we ought to change then – wrong. 

The God given nature of every human includes the capacity to fear. It insures that when we observe and determine cognitively that something threatens our safety or well being – we experience an emotional jolt. That’s fear. 

Fear drives us to some sort of action. For some that means withdrawal, flight to someone/someplace for protection or cowering and hoping that someone, anyone will come to our rescue. For others that’s action to counter the threat. They fight back. They arm themselves. They do things differently to counter, neutralize or alleviate the threat. Bravery comes after fear when there’s action. 

Those who counter with FDR, “The only thing to fear is fear itself.” take it entirely out of context in their attempt to disregard the threat as if ISIL, terrorists, crumbling markets or a controlling government are not real, don’t exist and are no threat.

So they say, don’t fear. Nonsense. And if we do we’re phobic. More nonsense. Follow their advice and pretty soon life will be filled with unicorns, rainbows and cotton candy. 

Winston Churchill had it right, “Virtuous motives – trammeled by inertia and timidity – are no match for armed and resolute wickedness.” Churchill calls us to action. Today it’s a call for complacency and denial – hope all those threats just fade away. 

I’m afraid of a lot of things that are substantive threats to me and my family’s safety, our security and our way of life. It sets me to action to face that threat and not deny it’s existence. I value fear because it galvanizes people to action. The deniers and phobia accusers be damned. I’m recognizing the threats, arming and equipping myself in preparation. 

Yep it’s scary when I think about it but denying it is dumb and promoting that denial is shameful. Those threats are real. Do I fear? Am I phobic about threats? Darn right I am. 

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