What I Really Want to Say

            This political season has caused almost unbearable stress for the country and for some individuals – like me.

            I  am glad the former administration was voted out, but I am angry about the debacle that happened between the election and the inauguration of President Biden. The day Biden’s victory was confirmed, people took to the streets to celebrate, COVID-19 notwithstanding. It reminded me of the munchkins who danced in “The Wizard of Oz” after the Wicked Witch of the West was melted – or something – after Dorothy threw a bucket of water on her. 

            How the munchkins celebrated! And so did Americans when the final result of the election was reported.

            But then the foolishness – the evil foolishness- started. The Big Lie. The court cases. The performances by so-called attorneys. The call to martial law. Our dancing of celebration stopped and once again, we – or at least I – found myself wound up, worried, and restless.

            Social media is a good place to vent but I cannot really vent the way I want to. I cussed out loud the day of the insurrection. I cuss when I see and hear how the “justice system” is letting many of those accused and arrested for their part in the insurrection get bailed out. Whenever Mitch McConnell speaks, my stomach turns. If I have cable news on (which is rare and will continue to be so) and the anchors are talking about “the former guy” (thank you, President Biden, for this perfect moniker!) I mute the television.

            On my Twitter feed, there are things that I see which make me want to write out my basest thoughts, like “I hate …” and I fill in the name of the person of whom I am thinking. As I watch Marco Rubio jump from place to place, issue to issue, trying to land, I groan. His recent claim that he is pro-union made my disrespect for him deepen even more. I not only laughed out loud, I cussed a little louder than usual. (https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/03/marco-rubio-amazon-union-alabama-oped-woke-capital.html) I cringe as I hear Republicans (and now, Gov. Cuomo) use the term “woke,” like they know what it is. They do not. And when I hear Republicans – political and civilian – use the phrase “cancel culture,” I want to sit them down and talk about what it really is to be canceled in this country.

            I watched Nikki Haley jump from lily pad to lily pad, one day supporting the former guy and the next day wanting to be back in his good graces, asking permission to visit him at Mara Lago – to which he said no and I could not swallow my disgust. Where is her dignity? Where is the dignity of any of these sycophants who have made the former guy a god on earth?

(https://www.politico.com/interactives/2021/magazine-nikki-haleys-choice/)

            Then there is Marjorie Taylor Greene, whose antics and arrogance are beyond ludicrous.

            I want to say things like, “the Republicans have no souls” as they continue to spread the Big Lie and other little lies and do absolutely no viable work in Congress, wasting taxpayer dollars by making “Dr. Seuss” books their points of conversation and outrage. I want to say “I hate Mitch McConnell” as he tries to assert the power he did for years, blocking bills that would have helped millions of Americans have easier lives and I cuss in my house as I read reports of how Republicans, none of whom voted for the American Rescue Act of 2021 are now trying to save their political butts by touting the good it will do for their constituents. I want to say that the Republican Party is the party of racists, that it is a party that has no vision except that of stoking, nurturing and incubating the racial fears that so many white people have. I want to say, as I listen to how the former guy really was in cahoots with Russia when it came to trying to manipulate the 2020 election, and I want to say, “I hope you get found out. I hope you get arrested. And I hope you go to jail.” When I hear that the former guy is intent on exacting revenge against Republicans who had the courage to cross him, I want to write what we all know: that if you dig a hole for someone else, you very well may fall into it, and I want to say that exacting revenge is just stupid.

            As I watch the clips of all that happened on January 6, I want to say that those who touted “Blue Lives Matter” were and are hypocrites because their actions clearly showed they don’t care about police officers at all. When I see pictures of the insurrectionists climbing up the exterior of the Capitol Building, when I see the pictures of them breaking windows of the Capitol, I still shake with fury, but when I see them carrying American, Confederate, and Trump flags, claiming to be patriots, I cuss and when I hear that they attacked police officers with American flags, I say things that I will not write here. When I heard Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisc) say that he wasn’t afraid of the insurrectionists because he could see that they were patriots who loved their country, but that if the group had been members of Black Lives Matter or Antifa, he would have been worried, I called him a racist and when he denied he was a racist, (of course he did that), I put an adjective in front of “racist.”

            As I watch the Republicans cow-tow to the former guy, I want to say that the Republicans are cowards, with no morals and no ethics – and I want to add that their spinelessness is disgusting.  As I watch and have watched people defy wearing masks as a means of helping to stem the spread of COVID-19, I want to say, “I hope you get the virus, but I hope you don’t go to the hospitals where health care workers have been working their buns off for over a year, trying to keep people alive.”  When some of the former guy’s administration got COVID-19, I wasn’t sorry, and I cannot even describe the fury I felt when I learned that the former guy and his wife got the vaccine in private to protect them from the virus he called a hoax, a barrage of words came out of my mouth. I renewed and reviewed my opinion of him as being weak, dishonest, and hypocritical, and also reviewed my opinion that over 500,000 people have died from COVID 19 because of his lack of leadership. The fact that he sneaked and got his virus before he left office just affirmed my opinion.

            Then there are the actions of the Republicans to suppress the right to vote of Black people, and as I think about that, my cussing increases exponentially. The audacity and the arrogance of these people is astounding. I want to say, “Y’all cannot win unless you cheat.” I want to say, “Y’all have no compassion or capacity to care about anything other than your own fear of Black and brown people having their voices heard and their needs met.” 

            Oh, there’s more, but I don’t want to dump it all on anyone who might read this. But like Fannie Lou Hamer said, I am sick and tired of being sick and tired. I am tired of white supremacy. I am tired of white folks who whine and cry and cheat in order to win elections. I am tired of racists saying they are not racist. I think folks should own their racism so we can stop fooling around with this “American exceptionalism” myth. The only thing America is exceptional at is holding onto and incubating its belief in white supremacy.

            One more thing: everyone knows that if the Democrats are going to help make the crooked places straight, – i.e., get their policies passed – then they have to use the power that they have now. This wrangling by some over not bothering the filibuster is insane. Their indecision makes me cuss out loud. I think they should remember Mitch McConnell, and know that if the tables were turned, he would do whatever he wanted in order to get his agenda passed. It’s what he did while he was majority leader. The Democrats should, as Joe Scarborough once said, “fight like the Republicans.”

            That’s all for today. I feel better. I got some of it out.

            Thank you for reading these candid exclamations.

In the Name of Biblical Principles

           There was a lot that was wrong and immoral about the state of Wisconsin refusing to postpone in-person voting yesterday, forcing people out of their homes while the nation is under a “shelter in place” order due to the coronavirus.

The sight of the people standing in those incredibly long lines, where they remained for hours, wearing masks and gloves and standing some distance apart so as to honor the social distancing requirement was troubling because what we have learned about this virus is that it is vicious, tenacious, and is no respecter of persons. I wondered how many people would get sick and/or die because the government forced them to make a choice between their right to vote and their health. They chose the former.

It was and is admirable that the Wisconsinites want to honor their right to vote; it was and is admirable that they decided that they weren’t going to let “nobody turn them around” when it came to taking charge of their lives.

But it was a slap in the face of Christianity, a religion which many claim but others basically ignore even as they lift up their belief in “Biblical principles.” As I looked at the images of those people, who, I later learned, stood in line even as heavy rain and hail pelted them, I suspected that it was Christian Nationalists who were responsible for their being there,  and not who I will call “traditional Christians” I wondered which “Biblical principles,”  according to Christian nationalism, were being respected or honored.

I especially wondered as the speaker of the Wisconsin General Assembly, in full protective gear, said that voting on that day, in those spaces was “perfectly safe.” (https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/07/politics/wisconsin-robin-vos-protective-gear/index.html) If it was so safe, I wondered again, why was he completely covered?

Obviously, the insistence of the government that the primary election not be postponed was a decision made without conferring with God, right? Probably not. It is safe to assume that the Republicans – many of whom might be evangelical Conservatives, did confer with God, did pray and decided that they had heard God say “go ahead.” The god of the Christian Nationalist movement believes, supports, and pushes those issues which they believe will “return” America to her greatness; they have, according to author Katherine Stewart in her book The Power Worshippers, a “biblical worldview” which “also happens to serve the interests of its plutocratic funders and allied political leaders,” she says.

“The fear of Christian nationalists is that this country has strayed from the truths that made it great,” Stewart notes. Part of the truths was that everyone had his or her place – blacks, women, Native Americans, immigrants – but over time that established order has been destroyed, and one of the group’s goals is to restore America to her mythical “greatness” by concentrating the power in the hands of those who best know how to run a government.

So, yes, those who ordered that the election – the in-person voting – go on as scheduled probably felt fairly confident that they were doing the will of God. They would probably say that they were merely following a “Biblical principle,” because they believe that “legitimate government rests not on the consent of the governed but on adherence to the doctrines of specific religious, ethnic, and cultural heritage,” says Stewart.

When people or groups do things in the name of God – be the group American Christianity, Christian Nationalism, Islam, Judaism or Zionism – it is nearly impossible for them to consider that they may, in fact, be wrong. Neither the Wisconsin General Assembly, the Wisconsin Supreme Court, nor the United States Supreme Court saw anything wrong with exposing large numbers of people to a virus that has already killed hundreds of thousands of people all over the world. So entrenched are they in their ideology – which they call religion – that they seemingly did not even have the capacity yesterday to worry or care about the people whose lives they put in danger. Christian nationalism, says Stewart, is not a religious creed, but …a political ideology. What they want is power – at the expense of anyone who is in the way, and by any means necessary.

The Biblical principle they leaned on yesterday was probably the one that says the people are to follow the directions of their elected leaders, something Paul, in the Christian Bible, did advise people to do – but somehow I don’t think the God of us all – including the Christian Nationalists – would have approved of putting all those people in physical harm for the sake of attaining a political goal.

A candid observation…

Biden, Harris and the Issue of Busing

Sometimes, in spite of the best intentions, relationships just do not work out. The two parties involved cannot see eye to eye on at least one issue important to them both; sometimes, there are more. The two try to “talk it out,” but they remain entrenched in their own positions. Continue reading “Biden, Harris and the Issue of Busing”