The Difference Between ‘Next Door’ and ‘Raving Lunatic’
I write this, my friends, laboring under the delusion that someone is still interested in what I have to say after a six-month hiatus.
The Presidential Election is only a year away now (give or take a fortnight), and such a thought brings me back to 2008, which will forever live in my memory as a night of victory and celebration. Yes, I’m flashing back now, bear with me. We’ll get to the angry tirades in a moment…
…my school had an Election Night Party in the Student Union. A big screen broadcasting live from CNN took up a wall, couches and pizza were brought in, and practically everyone was there (my campus;’ student body of 500 could easily fit inside the room). You could paint pictures of the evil looks the Republican and Democratic Clubs were giving each other from opposite corners (disappointingly, no fights broke out that night). And when Obama was declared the projected winner, I was the first one, by a fraction of a second, to absorb it.
And let me tell you, my war whoop of excitement was probably the loudest.
The Democratic Club, as well as the portion of the student body who voted Obama (including myself), went berserk. My friends and I went giddy as schoolgirls and skipped around campus. A new era was dawning. We could feel it hanging in the air above our heads.
Ladies and Gentlemen, that air of hope and change has been blown away and diluted. And, (sing it with me now!) I blame the media.
You know how in those old Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul books, you probably skipped through the chapters on friendship, hope, and charity and went right for the ‘Death and Tough Stuff’ section? Yeah, the media does that too. Only replace the ‘tough stuff’ with ‘negative forces, stupidity, and controversy.’ Our culture likes to react to the negative. It’s just America’s way. I suppose it’s meant to be a reflection on the American Cinderella archetype, in that any good American can live in an absolute shithole but still rise up to become President. Dumb as a hammer? No problem! Minority? Who cares?! Surrounded by controversy when you got caught in that gay club after leaving the NOM rally? Good for you! It’s sort of the media’s roundabout way of portraying the everyday man’s problems for the non-everyday man.
And with that said, I give you The 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate Nominees…
The Other Black Guy, TweedleDee, TweedleDum, Token Woman, Tall Man, and That Other Old White Guy
Each one crazier than the next. I won’t go into detail as to why each one of them scares me shitless as they inch closer to the nomination, but I rather want to focus on what they all have in common:
They all want to be seen as The Guy (or Bachmann) Next Door…who somehow still totes Corporate Politics.
What is the GOP’s fascination with being one of the good ol’ fellas, anyway? Meanwhile, being the very same party that supports the expansion and tax-breaks for Big Businesses and trickle-down economics.
Doesn’t that seem like a bit of a contradiction to you? I mean, if you were the party of the people, wouldn’t you want to bring the Big Man down and support the local businesses, farmers, as well as education in poor neighborhoods? In order to be the legitimate People’s Party….YOU NEED TO BE THE PEOPLE’S PARTY!
Talk about your logical mishaps. More so than their circular explanations against marriage equality, women’s reproductive rights, and cutting taxes for the wealthy 1%, this seems to be the big hole in the GOP’s most recent re-imaging. And yeah, they do get re-imaged a lot. But this ‘Hometown Candidate’ theme is a consistency each time…if you can call a contradictory label that doesn’t apply consistent.
Seriously, look at each candidate’s angle, and tell me there aren’t some strange contradictions abound. We have Michelle Bachmann, who mentions no less than three times in a debate that she’s a mother and foster mother to at least 20 children (madness). She represents the ladies, the everyday struggling mother, and she promises she’ll bring the woman’s and the mother’s touch to the white house. Yet, she is a firm toter of overturning abortion and women’s reproductive choices, as well as birth control.
Hermain Cain is ‘the other black guy’ who accuses Democrats of being racist, while constantly hitting at Obama for being ‘the WRONG black guy’ and using his race as his main selling point as ‘the guy YOU can relate to.’
Then there’s Romney and Perry, who I’m convinced don’t give a shit about whether or not they win the White House as long as they beat the other out for the nomination. I really think their constant bitching at each other makes each of them look decreasingly competent and more like rivals for Homecoming Queen.
I think the less said about Ron Paul, the better.
I think all of this just goes to show that not only does the GOP not know what the hell they’re doing in picking nominees, but that the GOP invests so much in the image of a candidate that they have nothing left to invest in the quality of the person representing their party. If anything, that will lead to the destruction of the party. Not their issues, not their funding. Because the most unassuming shell can open up to reveal a rotting inside.
Someone should tell the Republicans that not everyone likes their next door neighbors.