A Myopic Citizenry

Background Reading

Summary

Recently a cycling acquaintance made it known that for the first time in his life (he is in his 60s) he has decided to vote! Why?

He has discovered that politicians like Donald Trump remind him of Hitler because of the words he uses in describing Mexicans. And of course he dislikes the fact that Trump hails from the 1%.

What is very interesting however is that having avoided his duty to help guide the country by exercising his Constitutional Right to vote (something long denied to African-Americans) he now is demanding that people choose to vote for Bernie Sanders (since in his worldview it would appear that Hillary Clinton is an unfit leader).


TakeAways

It does not sit well with me that there has been a spike in the involvement of Progressives (some of whom have never even voted) in our political process that has become violent and ugly. Most of these folks are half my age and are evidence that you can live through some pretty horrific times in this country and have a fairly large segment of it lie politically dormant. And now that they have been awakened from their slumbers their intent is to transform the world into their image yet again.

One of the lessons to take taken from the life of Muhammad Ali is that everyone wants to assume that their battle is yours. That their concerns are the ones you should have. That they can sit by and do nothing while you fight and die for the right to vote. But when they finally erupt from their ‘political dirt nap‘ you have to take them seriously and their cause has to become yours.

Sorry, but ‘Jesus does not have to be white‘. I don’t have to ride a bicycle naked through the streets of Milwaukee to show that have once again adopted your world view.

While the developing world was cutting down and burning the forests of this earth, decimating the buffalo that fed the Indians and bringing up billions of barrels of crude oil to fuel their financial growth nobody complained.

Now that we have had our growth spurt and become ‘fat and sassy‘ we suddenly have decided that logging, oil exploration and buffalo herd restoration are the order of the day. And this is happening just at a time when the underdeveloped world of yellow and brown peoples are struggling to finally catch up to us. Our response is to suddenly ‘get religion‘ where Climate Change is concerned.

This is a bit like having a group of developed countries send their representatives to a global casino to win the overwhelming share of the money from the place and then suddenly decide when little brown, yellow and red people pull together enough money to come and win some for themselves that gambling is a vice and should be banned.

I am less trustful of the hoards of anarchists who are trying to strike out at Donald Trump by backing Bernie Sander than I would be a politician from the Old South who was trying to rig the military draft to ensure that the bulk of the nasty assignments went to the children of the poor who enlisted.

I want to know how you can sleep through nearly 50 years of your life and never vote your conscience until you are staring your dotage in the kisser? Please tell me that you were in a hospital bed fighting for your life all that time. Please tell me that all the Democrats like Hillary and Bill Clinton and John and Bobby Kennedy were at least worthy of your thanks.

Please do not try to tell me that you have suddenly awakened to the nastiness of the rhetoric being used by Donald Trump while having sat idly by and listened or perhaps ignored the venom spewed by Sean Hannity, Anne Coulter and Rush Limbaugh. I can take mistakes in stride when it comes to how the world is run. What I cannot take is somebody who has shirked their moral and civic duty for the bulk of their existence suddenly coming awake to lecture me on how I should treat the current political struggle.

My suggestion is that you go back to sleep and let those of us who have been awake all this time handle this. Get your beauty sleep and we will let you know when it is safe to emerge from the covers on your slumber bed.