Monday, November 19, 2018

Dear Great Book Guru, At our Thanksgiving dinner, we talked about the roles we assume with family, friends, and community. We concluded that we all belonged to many, many different groups but what was it ultimately that determined who we were?   One of the guests mentioned a new book about identity and suggested we read it before our next gathering.  Are you familiar with the book?
Thanksgiving Seeker of Truth

Dear Thanksgiving Seeker of Truth, IDENTITY CRISIS by authors Sides, Tesler, and Vavreck is a fascinating study of the 2016 presidential campaign and what it revealed about America and each of us. Their most startling conclusion was that we possess many identities that lie dormant until activated by outside forces.  Sometimes it is economics which causes us to identify with one group; sometimes, it’s religious beliefs.  Frequently it’s racial in origin.  Many politicians use these “hot buttons” to prompt a response at the voting booth almost without our consciously being aware of what’s going on. Elections rely on the need for a tribal identity - an “us against them” mentality.  What we saw and continue to witness is an iconic battle for who and what kind of people we want to be.  A very disturbing but worthwhile book - highly recommended!

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