Somewhere on my now long accidentally deleted blog from the past I probably posted something like this in other elections. Its disappointing that I can’t go back and read to see where my head was at during that time to compare to now. This election is the first in my lifetime that feels more like the battle for the soul of what it is to be American. I don’t mean that political leaning stuff, but it’s actual true soul.

What I mean by that is are we a bunch of braggarts in the cool kids club who are all talk and no action? Or are we something better. For my way of thinking the Presdient of the United States is more a figure head for what America is vs some king who wields power. One of the things that makes the US Constitution so beautiful was that it wanted to be the opposite of that. Sadly our political parties have devolved into ‘red vs blue’ and it’s a blood sport vs ‘fighting for the best for everyone’. Now we’re exclusive, if you’re not for us you’re against us.

This is not unique to the GOP, this is very true in the Democratic circles as well. How do I know? Well, it’s easy. I like firearms, and think we should have open access to them (with honest caveats, which makes me an anti-gun nut instantly). I’ve been immediately ‘written off’ if I’m in a conversation and someone starts talking about banning firearms and I immediately step in with no that’s not how this works, there are other smaller things you could do that address this and suddenly, i’m out of the conversation and ‘one of those people’. Same thing happens if I’m going the other way and someone is railing against a background check. If I say anything like ‘shouldn’t we verify the person is who they say they are, and that they haven’t done something..’ usually don’t get that far. God help you if you say ‘but you want to check people to vote’ because then the cognitive dissonance kicks in.

This is where I think America has hurt itself over the last 20 or so years. We ran out of big scary things to rally against, so we started team-ifying our politicos. Now, we’re at the extremes and this is no way to govern this nation. I will never say it was ‘great’ because holy shit people just look at our history, we’ve silently oppressed one group or another our entire life as a country. Land of the free…if is not a nation I’m ever going to be proud of.

Why am I rambling about this? Because this morning when I checked the news to see what new horror has been bestowed on us by this system of government I found one of the best written articles that struck a huge chord with me over on Pollitico called ‘The President was not Encouraging‘. Which was an fascinating dissection of the elitism that the former president, and 2016 Presidential candidate and all their little ‘we went to fancy schools so we’re better than everyone’ little shits they surrounded themselves with.

If it’s not blatantly obvious, I was and never will be a member of the cool kids club. My tagline on twitter for the longest time was ‘Was a computer nerd before it was cool’.

In the end, this is why I’ve always genuinely liked Joe Biden. Not as a politician, but just as an empathic person. I’ve seen a few things over the years where he’s speaking to a small group of people affected by something, and I see that caring, I understand the pain you feel that only comes from a form of shared loss. The one that sticks out the most was when he met at the 18th Annual TAPS National Military Survivor Seminar, held over Memorial Day Weekend in 2012.

The empathy in this speech gets me every time. He’s never been in the military, but he knows loss. He doesn’t politic, he just talks to these families, and honors their sacrifice that is often forgotten. Follow this four years later were the orange asshole bitches out a gold star family because they don’t fit his mold. You can disagree with someone and still show empathy, if you’re human.

These are the kinds of people I’d prefer to have leading the executive branch. They’re able to empathize with the laws they’re evaluating to approve or veto, they’re also willing to talk and listen to anyone not just rubber stamp things that come through.

So that’s why I like the guy. Nothing to do with his politics, but I don’t want the self serving bully running the country anymore.

Time will tell. In my experience America likes being the bully, and the current President is an example of that. Tons of incompetence, but for some reason blindly rally behind him. I have causes that are near and dear to my heart, but i would never base a decision like this on a single issue, when America is a complex ball of people and there will never be a size fits all.

I’ll fight them every step of the way if they try and screw with firearms. We have much more important tasks to focus on and firearms also don’t need some big ban hammer, they need a nuanced approach that no one is willing to take. That willpower needs to come from your senators and representatives. So make good choices. While the presidential race is important, the critical ones are the house and senate, and your local races. They much more directly affect you than any executive branch person. The caliber of people you send to represent us is much more important

People inflexible and unyielding in their cause are not the type of people we should send to represent us. They need to be empathic, and they need to listen to the experts on a given topic vs take a stand because they think it’ll get them elected.

But while I’m wishing I’ll take fifty million in cash too. I have no faith in my fellow Americans anymore. This pandemic has shown me all the nasty that’s been hiding for years.