Forming a Political Backbone

Watch out, I’m honing my political compass!

This past election has stirred a dormant, but passionate, activism within me.  I am disgusted with myself that I haven’t been politically active sooner (Although, I can say that I have voted in ever primary election I was able).  I am shocked everyday (but not so much anymore) by what I am seeing out of D.C. and Commander-in-Chief Dumbass.  So, I’ve been getting to work in my downtime (which is unfortunately few and far between) harassing my senators, our governor, and attending as many marches as I can.  In fact, I’ll even be going to a march in D.C. in a couple of weeks!

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Women’s March.  Des Moines, IA

I’m struggling with the feeling of retro activism–that by this point, there is little we can do but hold on for the ride.  I feel discouraged by what I hear on the news everyday but I will keep persisting nonetheless.  I am a stubborn woman, and this is not an exception.

I’ve been sending e-mails, leaving voicemails, typing up things that I should be sending into the opinion sections of local papers..  At work, I have been an advocate for programs like Meals on Wheels and Section 8 housing–I see programs like these keep people in their homes and out of the hospital everyday.  But the Trump Administration would have us believe that these programs are not working and are too expensive.  Well, simple math, one day in the hospital for a senior on medicare is waaaaaaay more costly to the taxpayer than a $9 meal and <$20 for rent each day.

I’ve digressed a bit.  I am equally passionate about what I do for work, though.

Email 6 of 7:

Senator Joni Ernst,
I would like to offer you some advice, in contrast to that of our president—IF the senators of Iowa choose to approve the President’s new American Health Care act to replace the Affordable Care Act, without seeking revisions, I will do my upmost to ensure that you, and your fellow senator representing the people of this state, are not re-elected.
In addition to my fears of losing medical care for our most vulnerable, I am in great free of the President’s plan to defund programs such as Meals on Wheels. Please, show the President local statistics that disprove his assertion that these programs have no benefit.. This program keeps our seniors in their homes, and out of nursing facilities, healthy, and out of hospitals, and connected with people in our community who check in on them and will direct them to other various resources as needed.
Senator Ernst, I have no problem paying taxes to pay for the care of the proportions of our most vulnerable. I do, however, have a problem paying taxes paying for the salaries of our elected officials who are not standing up to this circus President.
Thank you for your time,

In closing, I am a happy progressive.  And the more I think about what it means to other people (bleeding-heart-liberal, hippy, uninformed, etc.) and to me (forward-thinking, open-minded, all-inclusive) the more I see how deeply divided we as a people are.  We have those that want “the good old days” back.  And those, like me, who see “the good old days” and cringe.  Which is why I’ve been saying how irrevocably cyclical history is.  Can the cycle be broken?

I Live in a Country of Closet Bigots

This statement of thought goes through my head at least a couple of times daily. It’s an opinion that reflects the personal disclosures and values of a billionaire celebrity on his quest for presidency. How ridiculous—wealth and fame can act in lieu of time in the U.S. senate and law school. But that’s the country I’m living in right now. And as comedic as it is to see his antics riddled within the news EVERY day, it’s a terribly sad thing. I’m so disgusted with this country’s majority [voting population].

I do assume that most of these voters are either A, elderly, or B, small-town bred. Why? Because I’ve observed that the values of small-town dwellers and older populations align with the fear mongering and scapegoating we see this candidate spew all over. I live and work in a town of this general sample of small-town elderly and I see the yard signs and hear the conversations rallying with Trump. I wish it was “out of sight, out of mind” but it’s not. I usually try so, so hard not to stereotype or judge people’s character based upon values and political beliefs—but at this time, how can I not? I must make some kind of sense of this madness and I will say it does bring me some solace to know that most voters are the baby boomers and older. I am optimistic that someday, sooner than later, these views will—really—be a thing of the past.

I have never felt a political calling so strong as this year’s election. I have never felt so strongly against a candidate’s platform (if he can even call it that). I have never seen history repeating itself in a darker manner. Has the older population forgotten the racism and ethnocentrism at the roots of Europe’s WWII? I guess they have. It’s really easy being racist and homophobic when you watch Fox news in the comfort of your own home and when you live in a predominantly white town with predominantly like-minded people. I’m 25 years old and seem more concerned about history and ensuring it doesn’t repeat itself than the very people that lived through it. What the fuck? Will I be as close-minded and ignorant when I’m eighty-something? For the sake of humanity, I really hope not.

I am holding out hope that Trump is just trolling the campaign for shits and giggles. Why else would a man that makes billions as a real estate mogul and businessman be trying so damn hard to secure a job making less than half mil? Joey says he is doing all this to promote his new book. Apparently, the last time he campaigned, he had a new book out and he was able to boost sales that way. But I’m very skeptical a man of his wealth would care about the pocket change presidency and book sales would get him. No, I think he just loves power. Power and haters. Which he surely has a lot of these days. You know who else liked power as much as Trump? Hitler. Lots more Hilter/Trump comparisons to come.

Joey also tells me “Don’t worry, our government set-up voting in such a way that guys like Trump can be vetoed. He will never be president.”   I want to believe you, Joey, really I do. But what if? I know voting is totally rigged but he’s gaining delegates on the Republican ticket in most current polls and this doesn’t seem good. My understanding is that delegates/the electoral college has actual say. But the numbers are there—they don’t lie, do they? It all makes my brain hurt. I’ve thought a lot about what America would be like with Trump as president. I can only imagine it to be a disaster. Seriously, he has zero experience with politics other than radical opinions. I don’t think people realize what kind of repercussions could come from Trump becoming president. One thing is for sure, AT LEAST one war is inevitable to happen in direct relation to his rise to power. I don’t know what country, region, group of people it will be, but with his wide lens for racism; it’s anyone’s guess. You know who’s going to end up sacrificing for that stupid war? My fiancée and countless other military personnel—no matter what their beliefs. All because of some lack of foreign policy, racist, scapegoating, no chill, arrogant ass called Donald Trump. And war is just one little sliver of the big picture—a personal effect on me and my family. I don’t even want to consider the extent of everything else. It’s too depressing to imagine that much back-pedaling.

So, do you need some more evidence of a virtual Trump and Hitler alliance? Aside from using racism to gain power, Trump proposes mass deportations, anti-Muslim policies including but not limiting to surveillance of mosques and mandating that Muslims carry special ID cards, and he most certainly blames immigrants for America’s problem. Hmm.. sounds a lot like Hitler when you replace Muslims with Jews. And what was Hitler’s big promise to the German people? To “Make Germany Great Again”? Whatd’ya know!

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My all-time favorite pic of Trump campaigning. He took this before a football game at ISU in Ames. But his tweet said “Great turn-out in Boone, Iowa. Together we can make America great again.” Not only did he try to make this crowd out to be his supporters, but he got the location wrong.