Tonight, the first presidential debate will take place, and America will watch as Barack Obama and Mitt Romney duel it out to try to win over the remaining undecided voters out there–All 600 of them. We will watch as Romney looks for a place to insert his well-practiced “zingers,” and we will yawn as Obama tries his hardest to not make any big mistakes. We will squirm as Romney tries to distance himself from the “ObamaCare” (I hate that freaking word) that is modeled after his own program, and we will roll our eyes as we hear for the 1000th time about how it takes longer than four years to fix the problems he inherited. Blue and red, failed policies and private sector experience, and they will both attempt to tell stories about “real Americans” and how their policies will be the ones to pull the country out of mess it’s in…. *Groan*
When I was a kid, we played a game called “Smear the Queer” (We had no idea about the homophobic nature of the game’s title–We just played it. How a bunch of 2nd and 3rd graders learned about a game called “Smear the Queer” is another blog post, I suppose). The game was basically a bunch of boys running around with a football (the “Queer”), and every time the kid with the football got tackled (or “Smeared”), he would kick or throw the ball, someone else would pick it up, and the whole thing would start again. Sometimes a kid would toss the ball away before he was tackled (an act of cowardice that was very shameful), but most of the time it was just kids being tackled and showing off their strength and speed…. There was really no point to the game other than that.
There was one kid in our class who was notoriously hard to take down in Smear the Queer: Taskman. He was the biggest kid in our class–about a full head taller, and he had 40 or 50 pounds on all of us. When Taskman (he was only called Taskman, just as I was only called Bosco) got the ball, Smear the Queer actually became interesting. He was strong enough to stiff arm and toss us aside and keep running, especially when he had a full head of steam. The only way to take him down was for us to all work together. There were some kids who would slow him down (by lying down in front of him or grabbing/bumping–whatever worked), and then there were kids like me who knew our job: I was one of the kids who grabbed ahold of his feet when he got slowed down. When his feet got close enough together, we would hold his feet together and the rest of the kids would push him over. He would fall in slow motion, like an oak. A giant oak that we chopped down together. A giant queer oak.
One kid was never able to tackle Taskman by himself. It took two groups: One group pushing him over, one group hanging onto his feet. I feel like politics in this country today is trying to tackle our problems with only one group. If half the country hates the other half more than they love the future of the country, the Taskmans that we face will keep running–Big problems like failing schools, unemployment, national debt, failing healthcare, and the largest income disparity since the Great Depression. These problems cannot be fixed with stagnant legislators and a refusal to compromise, and they cannot be tackled unless we love more than we hate, and we sacrifice more than we expect. I don’t give a crap who wins this debate (that I’m watching right now). In the immortal words of whatever Kenan Thompson’s character is called on SNL…. FIX IT!!! I’m so done with this garbage.
I do think we should work together for sure…but whenever all Republicans were shut out of the Affordable Care Act and not allowed in closed doors meetings, when the President promised transparency, I think we can see why things are so divided. This President hasn’t done much to bring the parties together. While this is just one example, it is the President’s crowning achievement in office, in which he boasts, yet he did so without any bi-partisan support. He is a very polarizing President and I don’t think many Repubs feel they have done enough to try to get things done.
That’s an interesting perspective on an alternate reality summarized in one comment. Kudos.
The brown versus the orange – lovely way to put it! Why does that man choose that colour?