‘What are these politicians going to do for us?”
A guy in Texas asked that question a few weeks back on “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee,” by way of explaining why he won’t be voting in the most important midterm election in modern American history.
His words have been playing on an endless loop in my head ever since.
You’ll seldom hear electoral apathy, ignorance and cynicism more concisely illustrated.
Moreover, he reflects an understanding of politics as solely a transactional process: Vote for this, get that. But for however much casting a ballot is a way to get, it is also, and perhaps even more so, a way to say.
One thinks of Norman Rockwell’s famous “Four Freedoms” painting of an ordinary guy standing up in a public meeting to speak his piece. That’s what voting is.
If the evocation of that image seems corny, that’s OK. We could use a little corniness just now, could do with a sentimental nod to the foundation stones we claim to cherish: liberty, justice, equality, decency, democracy, compassion and all that other old-fashioned hokum.
Not American way
Because here’s the thing:
We could lose it all. We could lose our country here.
Maybe you think that’s alarmist. But anyone who is sanguine about America’s future has not been paying attention to America’s present.