Politics is fraught with mixed messages. Politicians campaign on promises that often go unfulfilled. Voters must choose according to their consciences, and this can provoke confusion and, often, bitterness when politicians fail to live up to their own hype. If you suffer from a fear of politics, you may feel negative emotions when elections arise.
Why Do People Fear Politics?
There are ample reasons to become apathetic or cynical, with regard to today’s political climate. Political scandals, kickbacks, and corruption all play a role in triggering the fear of politics. Tension and even anger can surface when the media reports a politician’s latest transgressions.
This Fear can Trigger Radical Views
Those who fear politics may become radical or even unhinged. Certain groups choose to distance themselves from their governments, feeling that they are evil or too involved in people’s daily lives. One example of a subculture that rejects the status quo are survivalists, who dream of a world where governance is strictly limited. Survivalists feel that the government has too much say in their lives.
Survivalists Distrust The Government
After 9/11, a new generation of survivalists cropped up, determined to prepare for disasters and impending problems through their doctrine. Fear of natural disasters, warfare, and environmental concerns lead survivalists to separate themselves from society.
Survivalists aim to outlast political unrest and economic downturns by a systematic pattern of retreat, designed to allow for future progress when the system breaks down completely. Many survivalists suffer from phobias regarding conspiracies, political corruption, and even Armageddon.
Apathy Can Result From This Phobia
Other people share the fear of politics without such overt radical behavior. They are simply burned out from the spectacle of public lobbying, campaigning, and elections. They may choose to abstain from voting because they feel every politician is untrustworthy and dishonest. The ability to vote is often the greatest power a citizen has in a democratic society. People who fear politics turn away from exercising this right, under the belief that nothing can change no matter who they might vote for, or what party rules their native country.
Dictatorships Can Cause Fears
Some countries have yet to embrace democratic voting systems. Elections in countries like Iran are hotbeds of protest, violence, and unrest. The fear of politics is quite understandable and even practical in the context of power struggles and dictatorships. The battle for a fair, democratic system is hard-won in many regions of the world.
Mass Media Feeds Into This Phobia
Living with the fear of politics can create a feeling of mistrust and even danger. People with this phobia will avoid news programs, mass media, and other triggers. TV channels such as CNN will be apt to upset phobic persons and cause fresh worries and anxiety. Voting or participating in politics will be out of the question. Debates and discussions about politics may leave the person who fears politics feeling upset or depressed. In some cases, a lack of education and understanding of political processes can cause symptoms to erupt.
A Longing For Change Can Bring Disillusionment
In America, politics is always at the forefront of media speculation. The recent election promised great changes, as Barack Obama promised “change”. But some people are now disillusioned with his performance. Change has not come soon enough to soothe their fears about job losses, war, and the recession.
People who fear politics may seek to avoid affiliation with any party or faction. Conversely, they may seek out underground political parties and subcultures that allow them to express views that are well outside the mainstream.
Symptoms And Treatment
Treating the fear of politics may require a course of therapy with a trained mental health professional. If paranoia and physical symptoms such as panic or rage accompany symptoms, it is best to seek out medical care. Many people benefit from learning more about the geopolitical atmosphere, through University or Community College courses. Learning about the way the world works, today and throughout history, can be very beneficial.