Why I Am Voting For Barack Obama

I’ve taken my potshots at John McCain and Sarah Palin lately.  Childish, but fun.  I don’t think anyone can really disagree with my assessment in their heart of hearts, that is to say “Ahahahahahahahahahaha”.

I don’t want to joke about that right now, though.  I’ve talked about Barack Obama before, I’ve got his link right over there, obviously I’m a fairly left-leaning person.  I don’t support him because of doctrine, though.  I don’t support him because of his policies or his character or his judgement, though I consider those all positives.

I support him because I didn’t think I could support anyone.  Sure, come November 7th, I’d walk into the voting booth and push the button for whoever the Democratic nominee was.  I’d vote for Governor Warner, help him get elected to the Senate, I’d vote for my congressman Jim Moran.  I’d do it not out of enthusiasm though, or support, but out of desparation.

I’ve grown up in the shadow of the Capital, something I’ve often said drives people insane, and I really think it does.  I’ve said before how in the sixth grade, children of 11 and 12 had to be physically separated during the final vote during the Clinton Impeachment trial.  I was one of about six people who didn’t want to see him thrown out of office, in a class of over thirty.  We sat quietly at the far side of the room.  We knew that Clinton wouldn’t be thrown out of office.  The rest of the class sat huddled around the TV in the corner, jeering at every vote against conviction, as my teacher valiantly tried to stay in control.

That’s what Washington does to you.  It puts you in a box and then ship you to one side or another of the political fence and try to stick you at the extremes.  Black and white.  No gradients, no shades of gray.  People go nuts.  If you’ve ever seen Lewis Black perform, and wonder why he’s so angry, I’ll tell you why.  He grew up in the suburbs of this place just like I did.  And like him, I can’t go a day without seeing something that just pisses me off, and is going on not twenty miles to the east.

So you become cynical.  You become jaded.  At the age of 13, before myself or any of my cohorts could vote, the debacle of the 2000 election unfolded.  Instead of doing what normal 13 year olds might do, play video games, listen to pop music, etc, almost everyone I knew became embattled in the fight.  I remember people making Sore/Loserman pins during art class, or worse, at home, printing them out and wearing them around.  I remember nearly getting in fistfights with some of those people, because thats what it did to me.  Finally, when I was 17, and George W. Bush was re-elected, or elected for the first time depending on who you ask, I watched the attacks, as I walked to a bus stop after school to catch a ride home, I was pretty into the political process.  I didn’t have a car, still don’t.  I wore a Kerry/Edwards bumper sticker on my messenger bag.  As I walked, some people would honk and cheer.  Others would honk and jeer.  Still others would stop and sneer.  I’m not lying.  This is just what the place does to you.

Finally, I had enough.  I wasn’t even old enough to vote and I was tired of the whole thing.  I didn’t think anybody could restore the most basic levels of sanity to my city, let alone my country.  I didn’t think anyone could pierce that shell of cynicism, the malaise of the disaffected.  Then, as I watched the primary campaigns much as Jane Goodall might observe the chimps, I started to pay more attention to what Barack Obama was saying.  More specifically I started to pay attention to the people around him while he was speaking.  The crowds, the grizzled veterans of political wars past who sat behind him and smiled, smiles that said “He’s saying what I can’t put into words”.  I saw him go from town to town, city to city, and the people around him didn’t seem caught up in “Obamamania”.   They seemed to be proud of their country again.  They seemed to be free of that cynicism, if only for a moment.  They seemed to believe in him.  They put their trust in him.  Slowly I started to get that smile as I heard him speak.  I started to realize that the maniacs weren’t the ones ecstatically cheering his every rhetorical flourish, but the pundits who were supposed to know how everything works.  Their constant squabbling, infantile, pointless.

They were just as encased in cynicism as I was.  Some of them, even started to say what they really thought.  Hell, they said what they really thought and felt and got mocked for it by their co-workers.

For all his policy proposals and oratorical talent, I don’t support Barack Obama for that.  I support him because he can crack open even the most hardened of cynics.  He can make them feel love for their country, their country’s promise.  I’ve gone from someone who was ashamed to be an American to someone who will stand up and debate a total stranger if they talk down to my country.  Its that feeling that more of us need to have.

At the very least, I’d know I’m not the last sane man left in Washington anymore.

Advertisements

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

John McCain… chooses Sarah Palin… a woman with less experience and intellect than his own stepford wife… as his running mate.

I’ve stopped gut-laughing long enough to provide you with this image on the future of the McCain/Palin America.

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

The sane may never live, but the crazy never die.

I’ve been thinking a lot about a recent, and rather unfortunate trend. More and more, the disturbed and alienated youth of my generation are deciding that its better to die spectacularly than live insignificantly. From extravagant overdoses to the shitheads who go nuts with a gun, more and more of my generation is being lost to this pox. And they’re being rewarded for it.

In life, the Virginia Tech shooter (he’s already gotten too much attention, I won’t bring his name up) was largely ignored. Even his parents favored his sister over him. In his gruesome act he became immortal, as the media gave him all he ever wanted, presumably in exchange for the ratings-bait of the v-tech coverage.

Many may remember the tale of Ripper, who achieved notoriety after overdosing on his “grip of drugs” live, on the internet, his death broadcast via webcam to his moron compatriots in an IRC channel.

“i told u i was hardcore,” he said just before death.

Even I myself feel the cold, vile logic behind it. I’m a talented enough individual to achieve fame or infamy without violence, but for some reason that makes it even harder to resist the school of thought that says it is better to burn twice as bright for half as long.

I look at talented people with similarly underwhelming roots. Kevin Smith, writer and director of several movies financed his breakout film entirely on credit cards, for under $30,000. Richard Kelly, writer and director of Donnie Darko, and fellow Virginia native achieved success out of nowhere with the most ahead-of-its-time film since Blade Runner. Most recently, Diablo Cody rides a righteous pole to fame and fortune, her biting wit having been observed first on her blog.

I’m older than many of the new successes in film and comedy already. I’ve been mostly unemployed since graduating high school, and I’m headed for life-on-disability. Were I a weaker man I probably wouldn’t be around to write this right now.

That fact alone, is terrifying.