What has narcissism done to our country?
Twenty-first century American life can simply be described as — everyone wants change, but not enough so to put their differences aside and work together. Republicans and Democrats have such different values, morals, and motives at this point that it’s safe to say our nation is incredibly polarized. Great deals of narcissism exist on both sides of the political spectrum, but there are distinctions between a Red Narcissist and a Blue Narcissist.
A study conducted in 2016, just a few days before the presidential election, observed the personality profiles of 750 American citizens. The results showed that those who ranked high in the narcissistic facet of entitlement were much more likely to hold conservative views. Mostly, they opposed tax raises, gun control, and allowing immigrants and refugees into the country, according to Melissa Burkley, Ph.D. This group of narcissists believe that they are more deserving of certain rights and benefits than others, and when they feel that minorities are getting more, they fight back.
On the opposing side, the study found that Blue Narcissists were not high in the facet of entitlement, rather exhibitionism; they show a much stronger identification with their party. According to the study, people high in exhibitionism tend to hold liberal political views on the same issues those who ranked high in entitlement were conservative about. The study recognizes that liberals are far more likely to be vocal about their own political agenda, this is why many Democrats will slap a “Feel the Bern” sticker on their car or wear an “I’m with Her” t-shirt and post it all over social media, Burkley says.
Evidently, both sides have their own agendas and it may feel as if we are going nowhere as the constant bickering in the media continues. The only way to get out of the state we are living in right now is to open our minds and be conscious of other ideas and opinions.
We do not need a red dominant house, nor a blue dominant house — what we need is a purple house where ideas can respectfully be disputed. Then maybe, maybe, America will be what it once was again.
Rebecca H. Ryan