Those who want to reap the benefits of this great nation must bear the fatigue of supporting it.— Thomas Paine
This is one of those mornings when, after looking through the news headlines and all the currently trending topics, I’m inclined to throw up my hands and move to the Netherlands. This isn’t a single-issue moment. Rather, it is one defined by too many issues, too much effort, and too few results. I don’t want to live in a country where we have the problems we are currently having.
None of us should have to live in a country where militarized police are shooting horses out from under Native Americans who simply want to keep their drinking water reasonably clean. Furthermore, I resent the fact that police officers from Indiana, whose salaries are paid with my tax dollars, are in North Dakota contributing to this travesty. No one asked if they should go, the matter wasn’t even put to a vote by our sorry excuse for a state legislature. They just went, giving the extremely false impression that people of Indiana support the desecration of tribal lands.
I’m no longer interested in supporting a country where the people running for our top political office—all of them, not just the two at the top of this dung heap—are some of the most hilariously inadequate people to ever run for office anywhere. I am beginning to fear going out into public knowing that roughly half the people out there are complete idiots who think that isolationism and unregulated business is a good thing for the country. I don’t want to be around those people. I don’t want to talk to people who have apparently lost the ability to reason.
Banging My Head Against A Wall
I have written emails (since no one actually communicates by letter anymore). I have made phone calls. I have tried playing by the rules of the game and have gotten absolutely nowhere. When I send an email, you know what I get in return? Requests for money, like this one:
Our final End of Month Deadline is just hours away — and things aren’t looking good.
I won’t sugarcoat this. We are WAY behind where we should be.
I wouldn’t be asking unless it was important.
If we fall short in the final stretch, we can kiss our chance of winning a Democratic Congress goodbye.
We have an ambitious goal — 32,982 gifts in 72 hours. Please, will you pitch in $1 and help?
Mind you, I didn’t write Congresswoman Pelosi. I wrote my own Congressman, Andre Carson. I’ve written him more than a few times and have never gotten anything more than fundraising emails in response. The same applies for Senators, the Governor, and various other officials in government office. I don’t even trying writing the President. I learned at 16 what a complete waste of time that is.
If no one is going to respond, if my attempts at trying to make a difference fall empty, then how can we say we live in a representative democracy? At this point, I’d be thrilled with a “thank you for writing” form letter, which was formerly the standard response from elected officials.
I will still vote on November 8, because in the race between untrustworthy and absolutely deplorable, I’ll reluctantly go with untrustworthy. I feel I can survive better under an oligarchy than a fascist dictator. Don’t take my vote as an endorsement, though, because it’s not.
We Get What We Deserve?
I keep hearing different pundits say that we get what we deserve, that the disappointing choices for President reflect the decline in our national character, the disintegration of our collective reasoning, and our steep fall into anti-intellectualism. At times, I tend to believe those pundits are correct. After all, three people in Florida, Iowa and Virginia have already been caught attempting to change people’s votes. Not only can we not trust politicians, we can’t trust our neighbors who are working at the polls.
And how is it we can acquit the seven jackasses who took over a federal park by gunpoint, but yet we’re using brute force to remove people protesting at Standing Rock over the desecration of their own land? Are there two different sets of rules that no one has told us about? That’s certainly the way it appears.
Could it be that we have horrible choices for leaders because we have become a country of horrible people?
I don’t buy that. We are still a country of innovators. Look at what Elon Musk is doing to transform your roof into a power source. This is still the country where teens who meet in an online chatroom can grow up and get married. We are still a people who create amazingly unique art, incredibly moving films, and automobiles that drive themselves. Clearly, not all of us are complete fools, despite how we commonly appear.
Do we not deserve a government that reflects our best characteristics and not our worst? Why do we not have a government that better values innovation and invention rather than continuing to support antiquated ideologies that have been proven to not work? Why are we still sending huge portions of our population to jail for no good reason when we’ve known for over thirty years that our current methodology doesn’t work? There are plenty of Americans who are intelligent enough to know that continued war after war after war is a horrible idea; don’t they deserve a government that reflects their views?
Nothing Left To Do
I’m hitting a figurative wall where I no longer desire putting time and energy into a cause that, apparently, is already hopeless. For the past eight years, we have had a President who might very well be one of the most intelligent people to ever hold the office. How did we respond? By electing to Congress the biggest pile of do-nothing bovine excrement to have ever disgraced the name of public service. If that is genuinely what the majority of America is choosing, then America and I no longer have enough in common. Just as we need to distance ourselves from people and things that are not healthy for us, perhaps it is time to do the same with our country. If I cannot, in good conscience, give you my allegiance, and I can’t at this point, then why should I stay around?
I’m not packing my bags just yet, mind you. I am still holding out one thin sliver of hope. But I am fatigued from wanting to improve a country that doesn’t want to improve.
I think I’ll just go back to taking pictures of naked people, if there are any left.