Sunday, 12 February 2017

It's Gonna Be A Long Four Years...

It's been a while since I've made a blog. And in doing so I've been thinking about the kind of things I could mention on this blog that would not be political. If you know me through any of my main social media outlets, you know that I've been going on non-stop about politics. Specifically, what's going down to the neighbour down south. I can't really shut up about it and neither can many others. And while it's certainly a topic that I'm interested in going on about, I understand it if others are irritated by it. Not only because it's a generally exhausting topic that requires you to look at various other sources to make a firm decision on the matter at hand but because in the current climate, everything is politicized. You can certainly make the point that all that one does is inherently political, but you can also make the point that people honest to god need to give it a rest. I was intending to do so for this blog, but I can't help but write something longer about what's going on and try to touch on some key aspects.

These past few weeks have felt more like years considering all that has gone on so far. With the frenetic energy that has come from his executive orders and petty tweets, Trump is continually making an ass out of himself and everyone else. It was fun for a while seeing the hilariously pathetic inauguration go by and I am keeping my promise to give the man credit when he's does good like destroying the awful deal that was the TPP. But then there's also that Muslim ban that resulted in furious commotion, Yates getting the boot and pretty much being illegal. Not to mention the rounds of cabinet picks that have pretty much resulted in the swampiest of people to rise up like Betsy Devos, the embodiment of stuck-up private school soccer moms being in charge of Secretary of Education. Add in the wonderful spins by Conway and Spicer to the whole mess and you might as well make like Harry Whittington and get the vice-president to shoot you in the face.

With all that's going on, it does astound me just how much his supporters are willing to let slide. He has dropped the "lock her up" line, his cabinet is made of rich elites, Obamacare being dead has essentially fucked their affordable care, he is using private email and also indulging in pay-to-play tactics. I can make quick jokes about what all they care about is that he keeps them damn Mexicanos and Mooslims out to have a giggle at the xenophobia that has propped him up but I'm more curious to see how this is being rationalized. Especially considering that he's being very blatant about it, particularly with the fact that he still really hasn't split his business from his politics. That and if I want to have a laugh at the xenophobia, I might as well do so at the mastermind of this whole administration, Steve Bannon, who pretty much looks like if a frog developed a rash.

As fun as it is to pick apart the gross nature and gross incompetence of this administration, it would certainly be unfair to just decry the whole of the right. And not because there are some like Ana Navarro that give me hope, but because there is certainly a lot of stupidity coming from the left too. Now let's be clear: I definitely think that the Women's March made a very bold statement, especially juxtaposed to the inauguration crowds. And definitely there has been a tireless effort by protesters, senators and other workers to continue the push against Trump. If nothing else, Hilary has completely vanished from the not-quite-a-loss she had with him. But good lord if there's anyone's law that has been horribly enforced lately, it's Godwin's. For every Spencer punch, there's an exaggerated outburst of rage that is flung towards anyone who doesn't perfectly align or thinks a slight bit different than the left. Sure, I wouldn't exactly say that Republicans are doing much to heal the divide, but partisanry goes both ways. And even though there is reason to be on edge about the whole situation, the hysteria is getting in the way of delivering the message properly.

Part of why this is happening is because of the fragmentation between the liberal and the left. Easy way to tell the difference is that one will scream about wanting Hilary or Obama in the White House and the other will scream about how those two picks are actually awful. And I certainly find myself going back and forth on what's to be done now. On the one hand, I do want there to be some unity between the two sides. On the other hand, it seems like the only thing that gets into the heads of the government is obstruction so Democrats shouldn't fold to the Republicans. Being that I'm young, it would be natural of me to tend a little more far to the left, but at the same time I've seen what going far left can lead. Despite the friction, there are hiveminds that are created and they manage to spill the aggression beyond those that can rightfully deserve it (though depending on who you are, whoever you believe that to be may be different than what I do).

Unfortunately, that's the nature of the political dichotomy in the US. Simplicity serves better for the politicians and their constituents even though reality is far more complex than it leads on. And we all end up playing the game because we all want to feel good about our commentary. It's why we read thinkpieces, why we share videos that stick it to our opponents, why we crack jokes about what goes on. I like to make it fair to show that I understand those on the other side, but there's no denying that I'm not down with the Donald at all. And that alone will be an issue. Some can look past these political differences and remain civil when discussing matters. Others cannot. These people change through time. Even I can be included in that category. Such is the way things go.

There's still a lot more of this presidency to get through. Amid all the awful that has transpired, he's yet to really piss the bed, at least to the point that it would become quite unanimous. The media continues to be relatively lackluster in their attempts to curtail him. And lord knows that Hollywood's smugness might just turn me into Toronto's Marco Guiterrez. I may be in Canada, but I can feel the vibrations of his actions up here. Not simply because of Kevin O'Bleary or Kellie Leech but because of the sensitivity that my university faces with these topics. A part of me still wants to remain positive about all of this. Not simply in that selfish sense of having this be such a trainwreck that it ruins him and builds a better movement, but in that sense that I was wrong about my assumptions. But again, I still am tied to my convictions. These years are going to drag on for a good while. And all I can really promise for the that my next blog will not be political. Trust me.