The Calm

November 6th, 2016

One last Sunday before Election Day. The calm before. . . the storm? the flood? the apocalypse? Sunday is the Lord’s day and whether you believe in Him or not, this is as good as any time to rest because next week is going to be crazy.

 

As if the previous ten months haven’t been completely bizarre, I know. Death, destruction, the end of the Cold War and the sharp rise in tension between our country and Russia. It has been a year where we learned the difference between “the lesser of the two evils” and “six of one, half a dozen of the other”. It was easy to get those confused in the past. I would not throw out “evil” so easily but when one of the major candidates for President is endorsed by the Ku Klux Klan, has supporters in the FBI and is backed by the Russian government. . . how else can you put it? A Russian head-of-state with a mind to undermine the electoral process and the public’s faith in said process. It’s almost as if the most universally hated people┬ádecided to back Donald Trump. Roger Ailes, Martin Shkreli, Ann Coulter, David Duke, Ted Nugent, Sarah Palin.

 

For years, Glenn Beck was one of the most hated conservative voices. A kinder way to put it is that he is “divisive” because he has a fan base that allowed him to leave the platform of cable TV punditry to start his own media network. And he thinks Donald Trump is dangerous and unfit to be President.

 

But this was supposed to be about the calm. The calm, folks. Because something stupid is going to happen on Tuesday. I don’t know what it will be, and I’m pretty sure no one else does. We need the calm right now. A day of rest. Watching football. Listening to music. Laughing at the little things.

 

This is my white privilege at work. Because I will stroll into my voting place on Tuesday and vote. I will sign in and it will be a painless process, taking little to no time. I wasn’t one of the millions of Latino voters who stood in line for early voting last week. I will not have to stand in a long line. Voter suppression is a thing I don’t have to worry about. Because I’m white. I live in a predominately white part of the country. It isn’t fair for Latino or Black voters who are being disenfranchised by voter suppression efforts.

 

What has the patriarchy ever done for me? I want everybody else to get some of this good freedom. So I talk about the calm before the storm and while a guy in my situation is on shaky ground, I am far from in the worst position here. I don’t stand to have my rights rolled back based on my sexuality, gender or skin color. Nobody asks me for my immigration papers when I get pulled over.

 

I get a calm and other people don’t and that isn’t fair. I wanted to write about other things as a distraction but instead here we are. I was going to write about Hunter S. Thompson and how you many of his books you really need (three or four, tops). Maybe I would stray into the future of third-party presidential candidates (tl;dr version: a future of Evan McMullin-types who do well enough in one state to mess up elections for the two major parties).

 

Oh, and if you’re wondering what if any Thompson books you need, I’ll cut to that now. At most you need Hell’s Angels, Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas, and The Great Shark Hunt. If you want more, get Fear And Loathing ’72: On The Campaign Trail. You don’t need any more. You definitely do not need any of his fiction, like The Rum Diary. And you don’t need to see the movie with Johnny Depp. I say this as someone who has bought about ten of his books. I could have given that money to charity or saved it. Ooof.

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