Wednesday, November 03, 2004
Oprah for President
Oprah in Africa
When the Boston Red Sox won the pennant for the first time since 1918, I was sure it indicated that a new world order was upon us. Fascism is dead! I declared. For surely, the Yankees and their endless winning streak are the closest thing to fascism besides the Bush Administration that anyone has seen lately.
And when the exit polls started coming back with the positive news—Kerry is trending ahead!—Democrats spirits were palpably lifted, the liberal media started sounding a little giddy, and Hollywood rejoiced.
Alas, alack, it was not to be.
Those swing-state voters—whether by paper, by touch screen, or by hanging chad—let us down once again. And so it is to be four more years of Bush, four more years in which the Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld political operation runs our country like their own personal multi-national corporation, four more years in which we send our sons and daughters to die for lies, to search for weapons that aren’t there, to make the world safe so Bush’s Saudi allies and Cheney’s domestic interests can plunder Iraq for their own economic ends.
To that I say: Hilary in 08. Or Obama. Or, God willing, Oprah. (At least she would give us cars, but she is far too smart to bother with all that.) Or someone we’ve yet to get to know. But give us a leader who cares about the welfare of the people, who guides us with light and not with self-interest, who truly wants to make the entire country a better place to live, not just the neighborhoods where he and his father’s cronies reside.
Does such a leader exist in this world? Does the society we’ve created allow such a person to rise to the top of our political system? Or are we the victim or our own skewed values? People driven by bottomless greed and an insatiable need for power end up running the country and its powerful corporations because no one else has the energy to do it. People who are fueled by love and the need to help others are teaching school, running non-profits and foundations, going abroad to help the world’s neediest. The people who should be running the country, the people filled with true inner wisdom and spiritual guidance are doing other things because they couldn’t or wouldn’t survive the process we’ve installed.
So we have no one to blame but ourselves for the situation we find ourselves in today. We let fear guide us all the way to Iraq, and fear direct our hands in the voting booths. We let fear choose our paths in life, pick who we marry, keep us in jobs laden with drudgery and disrespect. Perhaps if we let our lives be guided by love and faith, our leaders can be guided in those ways as well. Until then, we’ll have to make do with what we’ve got, somehow hope that women, gays, and minorities (basically anyone non-male, non-white and non-straight) will have any rights by the end of this term, and we’ll have to cross our fingers that the entire Supreme Court doesn’t keel over between now and 2008.