I don’t understand why it is that the world is suddenly so much more encroaching. I am finding this election cycle weirdly demoralizing and intensely frustrating.
I mean, it isn’t like I haven’t seen ludicrous candidates elected, offensively lacking in empathy and deeply at odds with my way of thinking. It isn’t like I haven’t seen propositions pass that limit the rights of those I hold dear, limit my own rights, limit all of our access to the basic human necessities
But somehow, somewhere, this one got in deeper.
It is like watching a reality TV show where you like so few of the contestants that you can’t even get enthused to defend them in the face of such overwhelming odds. It is realizing that you do not share this aversion with most of the humans that surround you daily. It is, in short, alienating.
And it is personal. I have made a living trying to expand access to basic services for those most marginalized by society. I have seen the margins skitter and move. And I have seen legislation move with those margins and I am finally seeing some alignment between needs and funding and policy. And that could all go away, and knowing, closely and deeply how that will look is nothing short of nauseating. If those allowing their privileged version of individualism truly understood they would oppose it to, but we are so caught up in the competition that fear of being voted off the island keeps us from seeing that the island is more than big enough to house us all, peacefully.
And also, it is personal. I mean, I am a woman, a mother, a religious minority by some standards, a friend, a human. Some of the things being thrown around make me feel immediately threatened. Not in some climate science very obvious you would have to be an idiot to see we are ruining our planet way. More in a “ I want to build a taller fence because I fear for my general safety and worry that my child will be victimixed by racist xenophobic sexists who are now empowered to act on their violent dangerous ways”. More in a how can anyone not understand that a bully and abuser looking to take more away from those he sees in his way by any means possible puts us all in danger way. But ALSO in a climate science way because I don’t like imagining end of days being during my lifetime or even my childs lifetime.
But also, it is personal, in a more removed philosophical way. Because I don’t’ believe people are bad or stupid, but I do think that too large a majority of our society has been slowly led to believe that our bootstrappin legacy necessitates pitting one of us against another and ranking in order to justify personal success. Which is to say, if you believe our society is so fair and just that anyone can succeed on their own merits and that anyone who doesn’t is being punished for those flaws. Well, lets just say there are about 3 things in that sentence I powerfully, deeply disagree with. Intellectually, emotionally, morally. Even as the most pragmatic and unidealistic human I understand the recipe for success maintaining that belief in direct conflict to the evidence holds.
And so it is making me sad and exhausted. Stunned by the blinding emotion everyone is wielding in the space that well honed idealistic intellectualism should enhabit. Horrified that our leaders are this filled with hubris, cynicism and selfishness.