This one might be a bit stream-of-consciousness; I’m trying to put a bunch of vague, formless feelings into words and having a helluva time with it. I’ve already rewritten it four times.
I was making the rounds of my usual news sites (morons.org, truthout.org, cnn.com, guardian.co.uk) and, after reading roadster_guy‘s journal, started thinking back over my own sense of impending doom about the near future and the state of the country. I came across two different opinion pieces that said that the upcoming election is the most important election of our time. I never thought about it that way before, but it really hit home.
It seems as if two different forces have rapidly polarized and arrayed themselves against each other over the course of this election year. Not so much “good vs. evil”, which is too simplistic a description, but more like fundamentalist neoconservatism (represented by Bush Co., christian extremists, and their ilk) versus a belatedly energized “revenge of the moderate liberals” movement. Both of these forces are rushing toward what I think of as a historical pivot point.
The concept of a pivot point is that there are certain moments and events that, once passed, radically alter the course of history for years to come and usually all hinge on a single event: an assassination, a bombing, an election, etc. I really feel like we’re headed toward a big one right now, and the hinge point is November 2nd.
A list of indicators:
– America is more divided now than it has been since the Vietnam War. This election has people more sharply divided between candidates than I’ve ever seen.
– Voter registration scandals are occurring all over the country, with registrations torn up and discarded, or voters turned away over contrived technicalities. So far, all of these reported events have been anti-Democrat.
– Several states around the country have proposed amendments to their constitutions banning gay marriage. Michigan’s Proposal 04-2 seems to be the most extreme, preventing recognition of ANY partnership that isn’t legal marriage between one man and one woman. VOTE NO ON 2!
– Campaign rhetoric and negative ads about candidates have dramatically increased. Sinclair Broadcasting was going to force all of it’s affiliate stations to air an anti-Kerry documentary, in violation of election laws, until the enormous public outcry made them back off.
– The next President will probably appoint several Supreme Court justices, setting the ideological direction of the court for decades.
– According to all the polls (for what they’re worth) the race is so close it’s balanced on a razor’s edge: impossible to call until the actual election, IF that election is fair and untainted, and it’s already not looking too hopeful that THAT will happen.
The invisible armies of ideology have coalesced, and are pulling out all the stops to ensure victory for their side come November 2. We’re standing at the figurative fork in the road, and both paths lead to very different places. One of them is very scary to contemplate, the other holds out hope that things can get better, and maybe reason and good sense can start to push the pendulum in the other direction.