There are few, if any, news programs, columns, cartoons, T-shirts or ball caps that don’t offer a political comment or reference to the state of the country. Talking heads on every channel deliver an ongoing stream of why and why not, arguing for or against the latest tweet, arrest, subpoena, rumor or photo opportunity. In between, the continued diatribe are the political ads, selling their product and warning us of the dangers coming from the other side. The late night talk show hosts, who have long been a welcome respite from the daily grind of political jabber are finding it hard to stay fresh. As the government scenario continues – ever more ridiculous and rude, their writers scramble to be more clever than the day before.
Those on the Right have chosen an outspoken game show host as their champion. They look to him to free them from the chains of bureaucratic tethers, keep the poor and needy out of their back yards and their wallets, and return America to the good old days when Ozzie and Harriett were the gold standard, and the gold standard was secure. The Right has no room for those who are not straight, white or patriarchal. To them, the melting pot is meant for fondue. Gays and transgendered should be in institutions; not in our schools, or in families, or in government. Schools should be full of Bibles instead of accurately portrayed history books, creationism theories rather than proven science – and segregated into charter and other private schools – all paid for with tax dollars. Public schools must follow suit, but with far fewer dollars and shut away in urban areas where “those” students belong. Brown v Board has been moved into the janitor’s closet.
All political parties run on fear. For the Right, it’s fear of becoming brown, or black, or of having to share the same doctor’s office with those on the lower end of the social spectrum. Although the majority of those on “welfare” are white, those with more melanin are always suspect. Keeping America white is their mantle – even as they embrace their scriptures, sing their anthems and genuflect. Keeping America male is as important as keeping it white. Women are not to rule. They are to reproduce. To consider the possibility of a woman President is totally unacceptable. Even if it’s couched with “I’d be okay with a woman – just not THAT one” it’s clear that females need not apply.
The Right side of the political divide also runs on loyalty. Loyalty to the office. Loyalty to the status quo. Loyalty to what works for them. Right now it’s excusing a POTUS who is morally bankrupt, laws that continue to discriminate against women and other minorities and changes that leave our environment under attack. Even the “Me, too” movement creates the question of what men are to do now. How unfair that this is affecting the way men have to work, and play and behave overall. Ozzie and Harriet made a television career on the premise of “boys will be boys” and that still permeates through most of America.
Then, there’s the Left. Who they have chosen to save us is still in flex. What the Left fears is vulnerability. Feeling as though they are the champions of all that is unfair, they do make an attempt to right those wrongs. Those attempts aren’t always as courageous or organized as perhaps they could be (I’m being nice here). The liberals of late seem to spend a lot of time and energy arguing and fighting over who will lead and how they will enact and maintain their yet-to-be determined platform.
The Left always fears their base. A base that is as vulnerable as it is diverse. While the Left promotes the rights of union and non-union workers, those same employees will jump ship if they think new rules, true or not, will affect their jobs. They want more affordable health care, but are slow to change what they have, no matter how expensive, if there’s a remote possibility that they will have to share in the cost later on. They want clean air and water, but that means changing how they fuel their cars and heat their homes. While that might cost more initially, looking at the long term benefits is scary. Predictable costs are less so.
They want safe streets and schools, but they fight any mention of gun control. There was a huge outcry over the last president’s views on guns from all sides, as he was expected to take them all away. Interestingly, that never happened. Any change to the Second Amendment brings out panic in the streets, even though the majority of Americans just want sensible laws. Mentioning how US gun deaths exceed those of other countries by leaps and bounds makes no difference. As with the Right, the Left fears change as well. Apparently active shooter drills in Kindergarten isn’t seen as change. Rather, let’s arm the school cooks.
The current Left reminds me of a composite of Nero, the Keystone Kops and Glenda, the Good Witch. They are too busy infighting, wasting time on a Mueller like impeachment inquiry and platitudes to set an agenda. Good ideas, good people, but no plan. That we have so many on the stage, vying for the party leaders to swivel around on their chairs and press the buzzer, is very disturbing. Seems as though game shows are the elections of the future. As women’s access to birth control, reproductive choices, mammograms and pap tests diminishes, so does the outcry. As the environment erodes and lobbyists purchase Senators, where is the Left? If, indeed, there is reason to think our current administration is corrupt, why is a useable conclusion taking so long? I wonder, quite often, what the Nixon daughters must think.
Disclaimer here: I have been a Democrat since the early 1970’s. As one of those cookie munching, tree hugging lib-tards that garner so much flack from the other side, I have great difficulty with those who support the current man in the Whitehouse, and any of his minions. But I find myself saying that some days, being on the Left is more than frustrating. Not enough to leave the party, but more than enough to take it to task when I feel it needs a “whack.” Loyal as an Alt-Right Republican I am…
We didn’t get where we are overnight. And much of what we see now has been in place since our founders snubbed their noses at King George. Racism, sexism, religious interference – a Civil War and hindered voting. Much of it was diluted, for awhile. But these things are as American as the proverbial pie. However, now it’s exploded, and it’s not pretty. Oozing out like lava, our transgressions are showing. We clearly are a divided nation. And not for the first time. Holding hands and attempting to listen isn’t working. It never has. Polarized as we are, it’s hard to see us sharing ideas, let alone tax dollars. If the tall one was correct, a nation divided pretty much screws itself. I feel that, until we do our own research from all sides, refuse to be persuaded by Russian or other propaganda (how stupid ARE we?) and look at things long term instead of what’s ahead next week, we are more than divided. And pretty much, screwed.