With the election looming, and the media proudly touting 2008 as the MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION YERE YET ZOMG!!1one, it’s hard to escape McCain, Palin, Obama, or Biden these days. I don’t want to turn this blog into yet another political analysis – lord knows there are enough of those looting and polluting the intarwubz – but I do want to say something about Sarah Palin.
She scares the proverbial shit out of me.
As if it hasn’t already become abundantly clear just how pervasive doublespeak is and how thoroughly hypocrisy has permeated the quotidian goings-on of Capitol Hill, 2008 can serve as the most recent and up-to-date case study for everything that is wrong with our system of politics.
Yes, it’s extremely one-sided, and extremities – hot or cold, Democrat or Republican – are the bane of any clear-headed progression forward. But I think it does a good job of underscoring just how polarized this nation has become, how factionalized and obvlivious to dissent the followers of any political party – or, perhaps more accurately, political cult – have become.
Teen pregancies? Irresponsible and unforgiveable. Wait, it’s Bristol Palin? Well then, she’s a shining beacon of a role model in terms of how to handle such an event. God bless her and her family for valuing life, and a pox upon those who dare judge them.
Two years in the US Senate? Inexperienced to a fault and utterly untested for the highest national (and, arguably, international) leadership position. Wait, it’s the VP candidate for the Republicans? Well then, her PTA experience and throw stone’s distance from Russia makes her an expert debater and foreign policy advisor.
Giving detailed answers to interview questions? Ok, this is a politician’s haven, speaking for hours without saying a single word. But since when is the blame being put on a single individual for seeming as if he is dodging questions, or remaining intellectually aloof and snide, whereas accusing the woman of complete lack of knowledge is sexist?
And don’t even get me started on the attempts of conservative Christians to spread the faith to all nonbelievers by hook or by crook, starting with the oval office. Ever seen the movie “Jesus Camp”? I feel ashamed to call myself a Christian, knowing that there are so many people in the world who blindly believe only in the word-by-word interpretation of the Bible, to the point of condemning all other peoples and faiths to eternal damnation lest they convert.
Yet again, extremism. Yet again, you’re against us if you’re not with us.
What the shit ever happened to the basic ideals and freedoms upon which this country was founded? Or even the very reason this country exists?
Oh. Right. Political doublespeak, yet again: Of course we have these rights. As long as we agree with those in charge about what those rights should be.
When V for Vendetta was first released, it immediately became my favorite movie because of the rich symbolism and larger-than-life hero who still possessed enough humanity to feel and experience everything we as “normal” and “average” human beings deal with each and every day. As the years have passed, it still remains my favorite movie, but because I am finding more wisdom in it to relate to the current predicament of the United States political scene:
“People should not be afraid of their governments; governments should be afraid of their people.”
“He promised you order, he promised you peace, and all he demanded in return was your silent, obedient consent.”
“While the truncheon may be used in lieu of conversation, words will always retain their power. Words offer the means for meaning, and for those who will listen, the enunciation of a truth.”
And, of course, probably the most sobering line:
“How did this happen? Who is to blame? Well, of course there are those who are more responsible than others, and they will be held accountable. But, truth be told, if you’re looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror.”
(yes, this is a convenient excuse for me to quote my favorite movie…but just be glad I didn’t quote V’s monologue!…cause I could…)
If there is anything I am black and white about, it is that this world contains little to no black and white people or situations. This entire universe is composed of varying shades of gray, and anyone who attempts to convince me otherwise is either lying or trying to sell me something…and anyone who is utterly convinced I am mistaken is either trying to convert me or silence me.
How can there be progress with censorship? How can there be accountability with preferencial exclusivity? It’s like a middle school popularity contest: resist the groupthink and you’re an outcast.
Makes me sometimes wish for the simple life of kittehs: