There’s a silly moment in the very silly — and hilarious — film “Office Space” where the boys are having a conversation with a weird co-worker about how they hate their jobs (of course) and the older gentleman is trying to sell them on an entrepreneurial idea he has to make millions: The Jump To Conclusions Mat.
It’s meant to be absurd and stupid, of course. But it’s exactly the game the country’s been playing all summer as riots and protests have been co-opted and inflamed as a way to affect the 2020 election.
Jumping to conclusions has become the name of the game in 2020 America.
Everyone jumped to conclusions about George Floyd, definitely declaring him a victim of police brutality but who, some reports now indicate, may have actually died from a drug overdose.
The consensus early on was that the organization Black Lives Matter (BLM) was a movement dedicated to fighting for the lives of the black Americans but we now know was organized and founded by avowed Marxists with goals that look more like introducing political revolution rather than social justice for disenfranchised communities.
Left-leaning politicians initially promoted the protests and social upheaval of Antifa and BLM, even going so far as to vocally ask for monetary donations to help their cause, before the violence stopped being the random, after-hours preference of the criminally inclined and became the constant of nearly everyone taking to the streets.
Pollsters and prognosticators initially thought black Americans would align themselves with the Democrat candidate for president in light of the support for protests ostensibly against police brutality, but black Americans haven’t been as inclined in that direction as everyone thought.
The progressive side of the aisle certainly believed the drama in the streets was good for their campaigns, but the rhetoric of support has shifted leading many to wonder if the internal polls are showing that to be an erroneous assumption.
Many people assumed the political conventions would show the superiority of the Democrats in production value and messaging, with the added bonus of showing the incompetence of the current president. The opposite happened.
There’s been a whole lot of jumping to conclusions which, it should be noted, doesn’t make that weird co-worker’s idea any less dumb.
It should, however, prove to Americans that in the age of rapid fire social media reporting and overt propaganda, it’s to the advantage of voters and consumers of information who care what’s actually happening to stop, take a breath, and wait until more information becomes available before drawing lines in the sand and declaring allegiances.
Because no one should be playing that stupid Jump to Conclusions game. It’s the worst idea Michael Bolton’s ever heard in his life for a reason.