reading over my friends page, i see that everyone has posted something about going out and voting, or severe dislike for one prezzy candidate over another, or why the system sucks, etc.I don't feel particularly good about either candidate, and because i live in Massachusetts i don't have to feel guilty about not having voted. (Much though i really don't like having an electoral college and wish it were a straight-up popular vote.)
I'm reminded of something Nawal el Saadawi said a few weeks ago:
"I am disgusted. Here in America, they have reduced politics to election."
Yes, by all means, for goodness sake, please vote if you haven't already. But don't abandon your politics or passion on November 3. It will be a waste if this passion dissolves into riots or cheers or thrown-up hands of disgust. If Bush wins (after we all stop crying), we have to keep fighting, we have to hold him responsible and accountable for everything he has done and for everything he plans to do. We have to continue to write and talk and dissent. If Kerry wins (after we all stop crying), we have to keep fighting, we have to hold him responsible and accountable for everything he has done and for everything he plans to do. We have to continue to write and talk and dissent.
Vote, but don't stop there.
I think dialoguing with people and engaging people about issues and daily living responsibly and consciously and writing letters and voting on stuff that isn't as big as the President are all important thing. I'm not going to tell people to go and vote in the Presidential election and i'm not going to tell them not to. But i would much rather that people educate themselves about issues and engage in dialogue with other people on a regular basis and make a conscious effort to live their lives in agreement with their principles. Not that people can't do both, of course, but i think the "smaller" stuff is really where it's at.
Does it matter who will be the President for the next 4 years? Of course. Is it the be all and end all of discussion and activism for the next 4 years? I sure hope not.
My UMass professor today talked about how the losing politician used to spout the cliche "That which unites us is greater than that which divides us," in his concessionary speech and how he wonders if that is still true. I have to believe that it still is. I don't buy the idea of the rich white men who get together and have lunch on Tuesdays and decide who they want to oppress that week. I really think for the most part, people have the best interests of the general populace at heart. Of course, people of integrity and good will disagree on what constitute those best interests, but i have to believe in the possibility of respectful disagreement, of actual engagement and discussion.
A while back, sarah_p posted some of the SNL from when the Yankees got eliminated from the playoffs in 2002.
Seth Meyers: And here's something you might not know: Fall is awesome. The leaves change color, it's breathtaking! Ever wonder why New England has such beautiful foliage? It's God's way of apologizing.So is the unseasonably beautiful weather God's way of apologizing for the hell that has been this electoral season? ;)
BlogThings has buttons for your LJ/website/whatever and i like the Libertarian slogans "Pro-Choice on Everything." They also have a " What political persuasion are you?" quiz many of whose questions/answer options i find very problematic, but it did tell me You Are a "Don't Tread On Me" Libertarian.