Welp, 2016 is almost over. The election has passed us. Harambe, David Bowie and countless other beloved celebrities are as dead as Hillary Clinton’s political career, and Donald Trump is our president. One gets the sense that should Marty McFly and Doc Brown roll up in their DeLorean, they’d have no shortage of takers willing to return to the halcyon days of 1985 with them.
How in Odin’s name did it come to this?
It depends on who you ask. Chalk it up to the Mayan calendars being just ever-so-slightly off to the resurgence of an ancient Egyptian God, if you prefer your answers more metaphysical. If you want more likely answers, you can run up the fact that America was presented with two monumentally distasteful candidates for public office and chose someone who hasn’t been in Government of one form or another for the last quarter century. (Credit where it is due, Trump has been a pop culture figure for even longer, but absent the political baggage that Clinton carried).
Personally, I chalk up Clinton’s failure to Two Primary factors: First, The fact that Identity Politics is a poisonous platform to run on; and Second, that the so called mainstream media has torched their credibility over the last four years at least, if not the last decade.
Everyone in America knows how important Martin Luther King Jr’s “I Have a Dream” speech was. Not only was it a passionately delivered and eloquent speech delivered by a charismatic man with unimpeachable integrity, it laid out the groundwork by which we should all be judged.
In many ways, we’ve come a long way from the 1960’s, and rightfully so. In many other ways, though, we’ve regressed. Nowadays, people are told that they are privileged for being white. You cannot set foot on Tumblr (or indeed, nearly any other social media platform) without encountering the dizzying ziggurat of identity politics grievances. Who is the least privileged, a black woman or a white male-to-female transsexual? A trans person is whatever gender they say they are, but does that mean that men can become better female athletes than those who are born women? And then there’s the thorny issue of cultural appropriation. Woe betide anyone who wears a costume from another culture, for they’re racists of the worst sort. (Unless, of course, you’re Rachel Dolezal, Shaun King or Elizabeth Warren. Then I guess it’s ok).
“I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”
I, like many others, prefer to judge people by how nice they act. I don’t have time to calculate how aggrieved or how much leeway I should give a person just because of what they happen to be born as or what they chose to shape themselves into. I instead live by a simple maxim: “If you’re decent to me, I’ll be decent right back to you.” So far, it’s worked pretty well. It’s allowed me to be a fox on the internet without offending anyone.
I know I am not alone in this.
More to the point, within the realm of politics and personal philosophy, you have a big logistical problem. Namely, if you’re going to build a coalition of the aggrieved and persecuted minorities, it should only surprise the very dimmest of people when a majority of people excluded builds their own coalition right back around it.
This isn’t to say that I’m celebrating the creation of a white identity politics coalition. Far from it. But that’s the problem when you deal with judging people by how they look rather than how they act.
A free press is essential to maintaining freedom. Nobody’s arguing this. However, the problem is that the press needs to be bipartisan in its coverage in politics.
Hands up everyone who watched the third presidential debate ( no cheating!).
One of the biggest takeaway moments from the debate was when Trump was asked if he’d accept the results if he’d lost.
His answer? “We’ll see.”
Indeed, Hillary had this answer to speak for herself:
For days afterward, there was much pearl clutching among the media about how Trump’s refusal to accept election results would destabilize the government. (Nevermind that in 2000, Al Gore didn’t concede defeat to George W. Bush for 6 weeks after the election).
Imagine everyone’s surprise, then, that Jill Stein (tacitly supported by Clinton) is mounting a recall in three Rust Belt states Trump won. Or how Electors are being pressured to change their votes.
This is just the latest in a series of the major media outlets being aghast at anyone in power with a “(R)” next to their name. Indeed, the accusations thrown at Mitt Romney in 2012, the closest thing we’ve had to a Boy Scout who ran for president in the last thirty years, were nothing short of incredible.
And people have finally noticed.
The problem arises when you have a potential demagogue and egotist in the White House. If you’ve wasted your credibility lambasting otherwise decent people who have different politics from you, nobody is going to pay you any attention when they nominate someone who’s out of line. Writing for the Federalist, John D. Davidson writes (Emphasis mine):
“…the media will be tempted to cover Trump the way they have been since November 8, with feigned outrage, hysteria, and condescension. In both cases, the media are abdicating their duty.
For a media establishment with only slightly better approval ratings than Congress, that’s a problem for all of us. If Americans don’t believe the press because journalists automatically denounce everything Trump does in the misguided belief that it’s their duty, then who will be able to credibly report on the Trump administration’s actual mistakes and abuses of power?”
You can’t convince anyone to come around to your viewpoint if they’ve tuned you out already.
So what now?
I honestly have no idea.
For the record, I’m withholding my judgement of Trump until he actually accomplishes anything.
That said, he seems to be (with some notable exception) surrounding himself with competent people (especially if he manages to get General Mattis for Secretary of Defense).
But what does this have to do with Furry News?
Glad you asked!
Furries still vote, need jobs, and pay taxes. The Economy and Politics affect us all the same, regardless of our relative Furriness.
If nothing else, I’m hoping that the next four years will convince people of the need for a small, limited government whose powers are regularly checked.
Besides, if We are to believe that Kek is responsible for Trump being elected, the Egyptian Gods were the original furries, after all.