Several months ago a cat at the tool shed gave birth. One day Chichan Ch'o' the famous, edible Mexican Hairless dog wandered by, saw the kittens nursing, and went to sniff. The mama cat hissed and scratched. Chichan Ch'o', having no hair to protect his soft skin, or canine teeth to bite, scrambled away, yelping piteously.
The mama cat seemed surprised and pleased with her paw swipe. Chichan Ch'o' is a slow learner so the next day, and for several days afterwards, the same drama took place. Eventually, as soon as the mama cat saw Chichan Ch'o' coming, she'd rush at him, with the predictable results.
Until now things had been different here because a certain dog kept in the kennel occasionally would get loose, and he was a cat killer. Until now, the cats had kept a low profile, but now the cat killer was gone.
Eventually, not only did other cats catch on and begin attacking Chichan Ch'o' on sight, but also they started going after the other dogs as well, dogs too mellow and chickenhearted to want to fight. Nowadays all the dogs avoid the tool shed, except that sometimes Chichan Ch'o' forgets.
This week I've thought about the situation because I like to identify patterns that repeat in many contexts, and this dog/cat story seems to illustrate one of those patterns. The value of identifying repeating patterns is that sometimes a pattern that is easily observable and makes sense in one place, when glimpsed in a more confusing context, orders our thoughts and helps us understand better what's going on. Here's the general pattern I see in the dog/cat story:
The mama cat's first swipe at Chichan Ch'o' was, for here, a new idea being expressed, the idea that it's possible for a cat to chase a dog away. Ideas are contagious and grow as if alive, so soon the cat-attacking-dog concept diversified, leading to reversed relationships between our dogs and cats.
So, can't we apply this simple dog/cat pattern to the much murkier situation up North since Trump's election? Up North, the new idea has been that a president of the United States of America can behave like Trump. Right now, as in our dog/cat pattern, the Trumpism pattern is diversifying, leading to new behaviors in US society, and in some cases -- exactly as with our dogs and cats -- already is creating completely reversed relationships among society's components. For example, until now, who was thinking that news and science are lies meant to mislead common people? Until now, who would say out-loud that the super-rich and powerful are the best protectors of common people? Well, you know the completely reversed relationships better than I.
Clarifications resulting from finding patterns repeating in different situations aren't always encouraging. However, in this case, there's a feature worth considering:
Our dog/cat pattern is still in the process of completing itself. Any day a new dog may be brought here, one used to having his way with cats.
With regard to what's happening up North, history also has its repeating patterns, and history is very clear about what eventually happens to societies who accommodate themselves to Trumpist patterns.