Friday, November 11, 2016

Calm Blue Ocean, Calm Blue Ocean, Calm Blue Ocean...

Seriously, take some time.
I want to wrap up a week that feels like Liberal/Progressive 9/11, aka, the Election of Donald J. Trump, on the highest note I can hit. And, again, yes, I know people are various degrees of nervous, panicked and shattered and that’s a reasonable reaction among a lot of groups given Trump’s campaign trail rhetoric and some of the shitty, shitty people who are excited by his election.

The best news I can deliver is this: just 27% of the country voted for Trump. (The actual winner of Election 2016 was the ticket topped with “Fuck It” running as President, and “I Have No Fucking Idea” as Vice President; 43.1% of Americans did not vote.) Any time you feel like the country is irredeemable racist, or that it hates women, just hold tight to that 27% figure. Then take the next step and consider how many of that 27% voted Trump out of: party loyalty; a mania for giving others the “freedom” to do exactly as they say in their own bedrooms; a longing for change, any change; disgust with Hillary (whether displaced or not), etc.

That thought in no way minimizes what just happened – e.g., America did just elect a race-baiting, sexist, atavistic asshole, one with awful plans in his head and a capacity for passing some of them – but it does put it in perspective. Clinton was more popular than Trump;

And, if you need a little more comforting, check the polling data that tops David Wong’s most recent column for Cracked. Yeah, yeah, polls have a shitty rep right now, but I do believe those numbers, as well as the idea that the country is more progressive today than ever before. The trick comes with mobilizing those sentiments and getting them to the ballot box next time ‘round. I’m not claiming that’s easy by any means – again, the country just elected Trump, even if by a plurality that should make him blush – but the potential is there. There's more reassuring stuff in that column, too, so I'd encourage people to give it a read.

The best advice I can give right now is this: go home this weekend, relax and don’t give this shit another minute’s thought. Savor the last days of the Obama presidency, a man who, contrary to online vitriol, was persistently decent, honest, and who had the patience of a handful of saints. Take this time before Trump can do any real damage to relax, re-center and recharge. This is a marathon, people, not a sprint.

Lord knows I won’t take my own advice – I have a minimum of three posts percolating in my head – but I still think it’s sound.

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