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Amnesty

A couple of months ago, I took a Gallup Strengths finding survey. It’s 170 questions, 20 minutes and they give you your top 5 strengths according to the Clifton Strengths. Four out of five of mine were in the same Category, which makes me a bit lopsided. The outlier and number one strength was:

Connectedness

Now, some of the dude bros are going to see this as confirming their theory of women being too soft and squishy for STEM professions or some such nonsense. But it actually fits right in with being a geek.

Here’s the detail based on my answers to those questions:

Connectedness

SHARED THEME DESCRIPTION

People who are especially talented in the Connectedness theme have faith in the links between all things. They believe there are few coincidences and that almost every event has a reason.

YOUR PERSONALIZED STRENGTHS INSIGHTS

What makes you stand out?

Because of your strengths, you sense every event is somehow the consequence of a series of actions, reactions, or lack of actions. You can accept that which cannot be fully explained using logic. You say there are no accidents. You are confident that things are linked together for a purpose that may or may not be revealed to you. Chances are good that you choose to join groups whose members discuss ethics — that is, issues of right and wrong — philosophy, or the consequences of current events. Give-and-take conversations stimulate your mind. You undoubtedly link together ideas no one else ever considered pairing. It’s very likely that you consider people more important than things. The value you place on humankind guides your decision-making. It also influences what you say and do as well as what you choose not to say and do. Driven by your talents, you sometimes like to help people overcome obstacles that prevent them from linking up with one another. This partially explains why you engage certain newcomers or outsiders in small talk as well as serious discussions. Instinctively, you sense you are not all alone in the world. You probably feel linked with every person and living thing. This openness explains why you invite a vast array of people to participate in conversations, activities, social events, or groups

I gasped when I read that. They should have just said, “best unpaid profession for you is blogger”. But more than that, when I was looking at a protein ligand complex in my previous life, trying to understand why it worked, I used to say to myself that even if I didn’t immediately see it or understand it, the fact that it worked meant that there was an underlying reason and mechanism and if I looked at it long enough, the answer would reveal itself. And it almost always did.

Uncanny.

The reason I bring this up is even Trumpsters are part of humanity. I know we tend to think of them as a separate species but it’s true. I have had a lot of very uncharitable thoughts about them lately. But with all of the things Trump has done this week, they’ve got to be feeling uncomfortable.

So maybe we should think of different ways of easing them back into the collective American conscience. I’d like for the more supremacist Trumpsters to read Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond. It should be compulsory. But for right now, I’d just like them to know that it’s ok to turn away from Trump. I’m offering them amnesty for the rest of the month.

Every one of us has a soft spot that’s easy to manipulate. There are no exceptions. It makes us human. Now is the time to wake up. You will never have had so much power as you will when connect with us.

I do not know right now how we can bring ourselves together again but I know that we have been there in the past and if we look and listen intently, the answer will be revealed to us.

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