So last Friday, we learned that a staunchly pro-life, NRA-card carrying, anti-gay marriage, pro-teaching of Creationism, anti-environment beauty pageant contestant, with a far lesser political background than the so-called inexperienced Junior Senator from Illinois, is the Republican nominee for Vice President. Simply because the McCain camp really believes America is so stupid as to vote for him just because he chose a woman, and Hillary’s a woman too, and Obama didn’t pick Hillary, and fuck it, a vagina is a vagina, right?
I swear, it is stuff like this that makes my heart stop with anger. I want to scream because I can’t for the life of me even comprehend this thought process, let alone the thought process of those on whom it will actually work.
I so can’t comprehend it, that I can’t even talk about it. I set out to write a political column, filled with thoughts and opinions and facts and journalisticky things, but fuck it, I’m too mad. And what’s a big reason I’m so mad, perhaps the biggest?
My boyfriend, the love of the last almost six years of my life, the man to whom I have devoted my heart and my thoughts and my whole being, is voting for John fucking McCain.
How am I supposed to deal with this? Really. I’m asking you. Please tell me. I can’t write about the issues or shit that actually matters because THIS is all I can think of.
We’ve of course disagreed on things before. We disagree on certain movies (he thinks I’m a snob), certain music (I literally can’t like rap), we disagree all the time. And usually it’s typical couple stuff, stuff everyone argues over, and it’s always resolved in a sitcommy 22+ minutes.
We fight about real stuff too. Stuff I won’t get into, stuff that’s real and hard, and we work through it.
How is it possible that the really tough shit, the stuff that almost broke us, felt easier to deal with than this?
Look, I’m not exactly a bleeding heart lefty here. Protesting really seems like a lot of work, I have no real strong plans to firebomb Bill O’Reilly’s car and I certainly wouldn’t move out of the country should McCain clinch this. And my boyfriend’s not a crazy religious right conservative. He’s pro-gay marriage, kinda-iffy on the pro-choice/pro-life issue and if his sizable amount of DMB, Phish and RJD2 music indicates anything, I’m pretty sure he’s pro-legalization. I think for him it’s mostly fiscal, which is where I admittedly go slightly cross-eyed and start hearing buzzing sounds. So it’s not even the issues that are the problem here. It’s the people.
I’m sorry. That was low. I’m sure she’s not a horrible human being. She has a child with Downs, I have two cousins with Downs, we share the common bond of loved ones with special needs, so I will do my best to not insult her. That said, teaching Creationism? Really? Fuck, I went to Catholic school my whole life, through my first year of college, and you know what I was taught in first grade by Mrs. Kennedy and many times after? That the Bible is a book of stories not to be taken literally. AND I REPEAT, THIS WAS AT A PRIVATE CATHOLIC SCHOOL. I’m not going to say anything against those who believe in Creationism. That is your thing. Go forth and believe what you want. Believe that the dark lord Xenu is looking down on us from atop his magic volcano, I don’t give a shit. But if you were taught your religious views in a public government funded and run school? That’s messed up.
But of course, that’s not the topic at hand. Back to the important stuff. How can I share chicken parmesan and iced tea with someone who is against a deeply held belief I have? How can I cuddle with him during a movie knowing he’s sitting there supporting someone I am against? How can I hold his hand in public? I’m sure there’s been staring.
On the bright side, I guess that’s what’s great about America. We can each believe whatever the hell we want in a land we are free to do so in. We have all the knowledge in the world at our fingertips, and we can access it all, and look at the facts and decide for ourselves who we think is best and then vote for that person. That’s pretty awesome. And while we may never agree when it comes to these two people, or these two political parties, we can agree that we’re lucky to have the freedom to dissent as much as we want.
I’m going to take the road less liberally traveled and say that the world will not end in nuclear disaster if McCain becomes President. Because it probably won’t. If Bush/Cheney didn’t kill us all, he probably won’t either. And all I want is my boyfriend to admit the same of Obama. And admit that maybe, just maybe, Obama could do a pretty good job. And to accept Obama as his personal lord and savior.
I’m not asking for much!
Courtney Enlow is a writer living in Chicago and working as a corporate shill to pay the bills. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.