Rattled By The Rush
Show of digital hands-which of you putatively liberal motherfuckers bowed out of voting in ’16 so you could see everything fall apart?
You’re a lot harder to find than you used to be. I’m glad that most of you have been shamed into silence.
All I can say is that you are lucky that Trump is a boob. You better hope he doesn’t find his stride, because he’s still dreaming of a white, Christian, corpo-fascistic police state.
He’s trying to silence the media. He’s given over Cabinet positions to people who want to destroy the cabinet they preside over. He’s picking at your healthcare. He’s ready to sell the globe to the highest bidder. Oversight from Congress is dead in the water, and the Attorney General sees no evil nor hears it. People are disappearing into the clutches of border security because of their nationality or race. Trump has a Supreme Court pick in his pocket that could end women’s privacy rights. I could continue, but you’re a smart bunch, you have read all this elsewhere.
And some of you good liberals brought us here, thinking that yucky medicine would stop the sickness that you perceived that America had come down with.
I’m ready to be done with this line of thought. We dodged a bullet when we drew Trump. He might be too stupid to be a true reactionary. But I don’t think a lot of you would have let the election go by if the enemy were more competent. I’d like to think that, at any rate.
What I’d like to do is challenge the notion that we need to be dropped on our heads before we do the right thing.
I’d at least like to make the case that in a post-Trump world, we don’t have to get dropped anymore to attain the type of change we want. It’s actually dangerous, and may cause lasting damage.
I may be totally wrong. We might be living in Bedlam, where repeated shocks to our systems are the only cures for our true ills. If this political theory of occasional shock treatment is to hold, we must come to the conclusion that we are no better than rats who learn which pieces of cheese are electrified, or dogs who know not to cross the flags in the yard. We must be terrorized and kicked for our own good once in a while, so we don’t forget what happens when we break the rules.
In other words, we don’t know what’s good for us unless we are shown forcefully what is bad. And I have to say, that’s a very, very dangerous place to be. Political divisions aside, we are still an advanced, democratic, educated and interdependent society whose machinery is too sophisticated to need a spanner to be thrown into it just so a trusty repairman can come and fix it. Don’t follow leaders, and watch your parking meters. Maybe I’m looking at us with rose-colored glasses, but I like to believe that along the way, most of us have learned to be good on our own, with a few tried and true rules to guide us. Rules, not rulers.
I just feel the need to disagree with this negative way of looking at America, and being hopeful like that is alien to me. But two steps back for one step forward is bad math. And we never get what we want by not buying in. It is hard to believe in retrospect that the dazzling, positive energy of the ‘sixties culminated in the election of Richard Nixon. We went into a dark place populated with things like enemies lists, critic silencing, Kent State, Cambodia and Laos and the shattering of the middle class. Sound familiar? The left said All or Nothing and everybody got Nothing. Hubert Humphrey may have been boring, but he wasn’t and would never be the creep that Nixon was.
That just happened again. We on the left gambled after Bernie Sanders succumbed to Hillary Clinton and got Nothing-we asked for and got the Trump administration. Jesus, I am still having trouble putting the words “Trump” and “administration” together. As I said, were he competent, all the puzzle pieces are in place for him to silence his enemies, circumvent the press, rob the joint blind with his golf buddies, start a hot war and pave the way for the next generation of bleached, unquestioning, obedient citizens who will happily allow another generation of Jesus-loving, vicious faux-patriotic thieves to take what’s left of what belongs to all of us.
Alright. Much too much chatter, I need to get to my point. I’m obviously still smarting from how this whole thing went down, where a bozo supreme like Donald Trump made liberals fight amongst themselves the way we have.
It would appear that I am breaking my own neck to say we deserve better than Trump. I’m trying to fight my natural bent towards looking at things negatively and saying we got what we deserved. I’m looking over this and wondering who the hell wrote it, which is a feeling I am familiar with, I fear.
But for some reason, I can’t let this go by anymore.
I think we are playing with fire. I don’t find the glibness comforting, nor do I support the thesis which is: we have to put the crazy in charge to usher in the sane. It’s highly presumptive. Every damn article I see like this always assumes everyone will wake up and never let the bad thing happen again.
I have an idea: how about preventing the bad thing before it fucking happens? Because one of these days, and it may come sooner than you think…the half-nelson that Trump and his banditos have this country in might get ratcheted up so it hurts to strike back. Do we need to bleed, or did we already know well in advance of the election that Donald Trump was a dangerous maniac?
We shouldn’t have to make teachers go to the streets to retain our rights. They already do something called educating our children. They need dry erase markers, not picket signs. Parents don’t have time for this shit either, they being employed themselves.
I have a great idea-let’s send Ben Cohen and those who think like him to go into the streets since he’s obviously got it sussed. I don’t think an opinion column writer should be the one blowing the shofar when people’s jobs are in jeopardy if they act out. It’s just irresponsible to predict revolution when you are not in the corps.
We knew what Trump was. We knew how audacious his warped vision was. Yet some of you let him pass, assuming he would destroy himself. I am not convinced he will-and I’m not sure that allowing a gargoyle like Betsy DeVos to even consider privatizing and Christianizing the school system is acceptable. We should have howled long before the brick hit. Because this Congress will dole out those vouchers and it could be your school that takes a haircut. If you’ve been vaguely aware of political goings on, you know this has been an interest of the Republican party for a while now. Now it’s dark.
What I am trying to say is: don’t assume bad medicine is the answer to everything. Don’t be glad the fox is in the henhouse, when you knew the nature of the fox already. It’s not a long term fix, and it’s a dodgy short-term one as well that asks a lot of the already burdened. We have been given the gift of foresight along with our opposable thumbs and bipedalism. Let’s telegraph these punches to the body politic next time around, stay informed, and vote strategically. I’m ready to go into the street, but I don’t have to be happy about it, and I certainly don’t need a goddamned newspaper columnist to tell me I need to go.