Jan. 18th, 2009

mr_cellaneous: (Default)
I posted this as a comment on someone else's blog and thought I'd repeat it here.

At 9 AM pacific time on Tuesday morning I’m popping open a bottle of good champagne. It’s early in the day to be drinking, but worth it.

I wish I could say I found the events of the Bush years surprising, but “surprise” was rarely the emotion. It was more like an endless, horrible confirmation of all my lurking fears—like the nightmare in which all the horrors you refuse to believe in turn out to be real, and so now you’re not only being chased by zombies but you also feel like a fucking idiot for all the times you said you didn’t believe in the goddamn things.

I used to believe, and I suppose I still kinda do, that (as King put it) “the arc of history is long, but it bends toward justice.” I used to see the bad things that happened in the world and remind myself that the human race takes more steps forward than back, that only a few hundred years had taken us from feudalism and the slave trade to the modern world of widespread democracy and freedom, and even if we did still have some distance to go, the trends looked good for our side. But then I saw America turn around and run the wrong way as fast is it could, flinging all its noble principles aside in its shrieking fear of swarthy people with boxcutters and shoe bombs—everything from habeas corpus to the Geneva Conventions suddenly “quaint”—and a smirking psychopathic moron leading the way. And then we re-elected the motherfucker.

This inauguration is a grand thing, no question, but it doesn't undo the hurt. It’s going to be hard for me ever to feel really optimistic about human nature again. And I suppose realism is a good thing, but dammit, I liked naïveté better.



mr_cellaneous: (me)
I have to say, it's hard to maintain feelings of politcal cynicism and despair on a day when the inaugural festivities included Pete Seeger at the Lincoln Memorial singing "This Land Is Your Land" to the incoming president... and singing all of it. Including the verses that never make it into the schoolbooks...

In the squares of the city, in the shadow of the steeple
Near the relief office, I see my people
And some are grumblin' and some are wonderin'
If this land's still made for you and me.

As I was walkin', I saw a sign there
And on the sign it said, no trespassin'
But on the other side, it didn't say nothin'
That side was made for you and me

Go, Pete.

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