I feel like I’ve been in a political holding pattern lately.
Since the brief glimpse of hope offered by the November elections, there’ve been a huge number of setbacks:
– the tax bill, which is a huge leap towards modern class warfare
– the outright give-away of 2 million acres of public parks
– the supreme court temporarily upholding the 3rd travel ban
– net neutrality’s looking mighty grim
– Puerto Rico never really got any (federal) help
– ??? take your pick, there’s so much
Most of this is basically out of reach. These are all decisions made by people who have absolutely zero incentive to heed my concerns.
Traditional political activism feels useless by nature of the fact that I live in Brooklyn. I have literally never met a Trump supporter here. My representatives are already among the most liberal in Congress. That isn’t saying much, of course, but they’re not bad, overall.
Further radicalization seemed like the obvious next step, but as I’ve written previously, I’ve been turned off by what I see from the DSA. I love Jacobin’s insight and rigorous exploration of socialist policy, but then I see platitudes like “eat the rich” touted as a legitimate platform. I don’t begrudge the sentiment, but it’s just such a laughably short-sighted perspective on the problem.
I don’t see any major political actors making strides in the problem of how we dig ourselves out of the situation we presently find ourselves in. What do you do about a constitution that gives the state of Wyoming the same political weight as New York? How can an activist in California have any relevance to the problem of voter suppression in Alabama?
Absent any movement I strongly identify with or find convincing in its short-term proposals for change, I find myself just silently observing, taking notes.
I’ve been a lot more focused on the somehow herculean act of making friends, because I think it might be the case that creating real relationships with other human beings matters way more than keeping track of every ounce of Trump’s bullshit. Or maybe this is a roundabout way of justifying a measure of apathy. I genuinely don’t know.
What I do know is that I’ve been absurdly happy the last 2 months. This might be the happiest I’ve ever been in my life. That probably has had a lot to do with finding a community in Bushwick that I adore, and pulling back the throttle a bit on how much energy I devote to the news.