Political thought

21 November 2016 § Leave a comment

21 November

[written a few days after the election]

As someone registered as an independent and with an eccentric voting record (for the sake of transparency, although better if it were for the sake of hot sake: McCain + Romney + Bernie + Hillary; this is not a trend towards the liberal, but rather a careful weighing of issues and values for each election) (yes, I agree that voting for Bernie was dumb, but it was fun; I didn’t want Hillary to win the Democratic nomination; and I thought surely Trump wouldn’t win, so I chose not to vote Republican in the primaries), the drama of the past six months has been even more riveting, chilling, disturbing, amusing, et al.  I miss the time when watching Trump say ‘China’ made me fall on the floor laughing—no apologies for being a myotonic goat—instead of feel like a cold charcoal is sitting in my stomach.

I disliked HRC for so long.  I thought she negatively affected our country in so many ways, I thought she wasted time and energy crafting an ill-advised, illogical healthcare bill when Bill was president, and I thought she was too much of a warmonger and Wall Street confidante for the good of most of the country.

Over the past several months, she changed my mind in a few ways.  Her response to the disturbing presence of Trump gave me a new perspective regarding the Left, which, like the Right, I normally watch warily with side eye.  The idea of and commitment to running on a platform of love and kindness, in your words, is new, even if the person saying those words was, like every politician, a liar, a shapeshifter, a smiling slippery eel.  So much work that has taken so long to come to fruition can be easily undone, easily with terrible speed.  Will we destroy our own beautifully created world even faster now, the world that God created so terribly, lovingly, awesomely?  There is no long hope in earthly things, and yet the people of God are called to embody love and enact justice for others on earth and to live as good stewards of all things—our physical environment, the people around us, our minds, our energy, our time.  Little of that way of being is visible here.

Last night, I went to my pub theology group led by the young female priest at my church, just to be with other people; others who are feeling frustrated, who wanted both to vent and to make sense, or at least have a meaningful thought, about what is happening, what will happen, and what a realistic picture of our country is right now.  I guess it helped?  I don’t know.  I left feeling kinship with my friends there, but still shaken, adrift.  Nothing essential has changed, no cataclysmic event has occurred, and yet this sick feeling will not go away.

I have found the exit polls for this election interesting, and this essay to be a helpful meditation, if insulting to working-class, not-necessarily-anti-intellectual people.

Escapism: this dog is having an amazing birthday.

Escapism: this dog is having an amazing birthday.


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