by Cadence
A friendly word of advice: If you're American, you might want to STAY THE FUCK OUTTA MY WAY for the next 4 years or so, because I've got a bone to pick with you and I'm guessing you're not gonna like hearing about it.
After the 2000 election, I felt betrayed by the system. My only solace was the hope that seeing a candidate seize power under false pretenses might be enough to convince people that it was time for REAL change. There would be 4 years for people to reflect on what Bush had done--unless he resigned in disgrace sooner--and as a nation, it would strengthen our resolve to make sure that nothing like this ever happened again. But I don't feel betrayed by the system anymore. I feel betrayed by YOU, America.
I feel betrayed because I'm pretty sure you've all heard about this "war on terror" the kids are fighting right now. Granted, first-hand accounts of the war are hard to come by these days, given that dying is just about the only way to convince the military to send you home from Iraq. But, if you've been listening to the news at all, you may remember a story or two suggesting that the war is--and this is important--built on a foundation of lies. I mention this only because from where I sit, a guy who deceives the public, commits billions of dollars to a deadly war waged on false pretenses--which appears to be the result of a family grudge or botched business deal, puts us at odds with virtually every other civilized nation in the world, and in the process sinks our economy to depths we haven't seen in YEARS, is--in my humble opinion--a guy who should LOSE HIS JOB.

I feel betrayed by you America, who according to exit polls, placed "moral values" ahead of any other concerns in this election. Because, let's be honest, "moral values" is a code word for bigotry. With your vote, you have told the world that homophobia is SO DELICIOUS that you would even choose it over having a job. So if that's the case, explain yourself: Give me ONE example of how gay marriage makes your life worse. Just ONE! I don't think you can do it. Wanna know why? Because I live here too. I know from experience what it's like to be straight in a world where there gay couples exist. IT'S LIKE BEING STRAIGHT--end of story. From where I sit right now I can look out the window and see about 5 houses. I don't know if ANY of the people living in ANY of them are married at all, never mind their sexual orientation. But I DO know that if they've made a fundamental decision to commit to being together for the rest of their lives, they're not gonna break up just 'cause we don't give them a marriage license. Whether they're having deep anal sex 24 hours a day, or popping out cute little babies in between making trays of brownies for the church bake sale is irrelevant to me. It's also irrelevant to YOU and if you think otherwise, bigotry is getting the best of you. The ONLY way someone else's marriage can ever stand YOUR way is if you went to marry THAT PERSON. So unless gay marriage stirs up your feeling that all-the-good-one's-are-taken, I don't believe for a SECOND that "moral values" is the most important issue in your life.
Explain it to me America. Are you thinking that the war will kill off the next generation of young people before they enter the workforce; leaving your unemployed, homophobic ass to become a captain of industry? Do you expect to rise through the ranks fast enough to join the economic elite, who George W. Bush so vigorously protects though his tax plan? Are your "moral values" really so narrow that they allow room for lying and killing and hatred? Does having a born-again in the White House make you feel safer because for once, we can match terrorist leaders extremist-for-extremist? Is thumbing your nose at east coast liberals like me more important than picking the right man for the job of President? I WANT to understand.
As I mentioned in the previous installment of this column, I have been a Red Sox fan for my whole life. Seeing them win the World Series was a fulfillment of a dream I've had since I was 6 years old. But I barely have to think back more than a year to remember Grady Little losing his job as Manager of the Red Sox for leaving Pedro Martinez in a baseball game for an extra 2/3 of an inning. That decision, which broke many hearts, didn't kill anyone. No one was lied to. The man in charge simply screwed up the job, and he got the axe for it. It's called accountability.
But we failed to hold George W. Bush accountable for stealing the last election. And we have failed to hold him accountable in this election as well. In so doing, we sent him the message that as long he continues to appeal to our intolerant, closed minded side he can do whatever the hell he wants. America says: Go ahead George, kill the towel heads, let the corporations take over the world, line the pockets of the rich, send young working class men to their deaths overseas, legislate Christianity. At least we don't have to see a bunch of fags holding hands.
George W. Bush wanted us all to believe that if he was, for once, ELECTED President, the country would be safer. But, the fact that the election was even close is frightening to me in itself. Even if Kerry had eked out a victory by a slim margin, it's hard to imagine walking though the streets of America without wondering if the people I saw were the ones who made a contest of it. So, if the returns truly represent the voice of the people, for the next 4 years I will walk amongst a majority who embrace bigotry, imperialism, violence, lies, and religious fundamentalism. Many will lose their jobs, or lose a loved ones overseas, or see their constitutional rights limited by an ever-more conservative Supreme Court. I can only hope that these experiences will help set the stage for something different in the future. In the meantime, on the heels of a campaign promising to make me feel safer, the world has never felt so dangerous.
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