Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Battles remain, but the war is over and we have won -- David Simon says so

Andrew did me the considerable favor of pointing me to the blog of David Simon (creator of HBO's The Wire, Treme, etc).  It will become a regular read for me.

On the night Barack Obama was reelected, I realized that we had won the war.  The America represented by the current Republican Party is dead forever.  That doesn't mean there won't be setbacks -- if we're lucky and work hard, 2014 will only be a minor setback -- but there is no going back.  America is forever changed.

Since November 6th, I've struggled to capture in words how I felt.  I've sat down to write a half dozen times but just could not put into words, the significance of this election.

No need to struggle any further, David Simon has captured my feelings perfectly
Hard times are still to come for all of us. Rear guard actions will be fought at every political crossroad. But make no mistake: Change is a motherfucker when you run from it. And right now, the conservative movement in America is fleeing from dramatic change that is certain and immutable. A man of color is president for the second time, and this happened despite a struggling economic climate and a national spirit of general discontent. He has been returned to office over the specific objections of the mass of white men. He has instead been re-elected by women, by people of color, by homosexuals, by people of varying religions or no religion whatsoever. Behold the New Jerusalem. Not that there’s anything wrong with being a white man, of course. There’s nothing wrong with being anything. That’s the point.

This election marks a moment in which the racial and social hierarchy of America is upended forever. No longer will it mean more politically to be a white male than to be anything else. Evolve, or don’t. Swallow your resentments, or don’t. But the votes are going to be counted, more of them with each election. Arizona will soon be in play. And in a few cycles, even Texas. And those wishing to hold national office in these United States will find it increasingly useless to argue for normal, to attempt to play one minority against the next, to turn pluralities against the feared “other” of gays, or blacks, or immigrants, or, incredibly in this election cycle, our very wives and lovers and daughters, fellow citizens who demand to control their own bodies.
Please, please, please read the the entire essay which isn't long.

I'm a middle aged white guy who will likely fall into the category of those who will see their top marginal tax rate rise.  But none of that matters to me so long as I get to live in an America that is a multicultural melting pot that prospers while celebrating everyone's differences and provides a basic safety net for all that includes adequate health care and a guarantee that those who have worked their entire life can't die in poverty. 

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