Sad, Sad America

sad-americaAs I sit here waiting, with the rest of the country, to see the outcome of this incredibly embarrassing election, I can’t help but recall something my niece said a couple of days ago. When she found out school would be out on Election Day, she said, “But what if we can’t come back to school on Wednesday because everything blows up?” Now, you might think she literally meant the school building is in danger of exploding, but no, that’s not what she meant. What she meant is that the whole country could go up in flames because of the election. Her overly dramatic teenage brain has obviously been affected by the endless frenzy surrounding the presidential race, and like so many others in this country, she was overreacting.

I saw it as my job to reassure her that everything would be alright. “Hon-ey,” I said, “everything is not going to blow up. Listen, regardless of the outcome, it won’t be the first time we’ve had a liar or an idiot in office, and it probably won’t be the last.” I assured her that the country would survive—no matter what.

And now, I watch the states turning red and blue on my TV screen, and I wonder if our founding fathers could have ever imagined that this country—the one that they risked everything to form—could sink to depths so low. I do believe my comforting—or not so comforting—words to my niece are true. We will survive, but I also can’t help but wonder if we the people are approaching a time in which we must react to our government as our founding fathers did not so long ago. Our Declaration of Independence states, “Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” Have we given our consent for this circus to continue? Sadly, it seems that we have. We, the American people, apparently want a government which operates similar to a reality TV show.

How much longer will we allow this type of insanity? Well, considering we are about to elect one or the other of these freak-show stars, we are guaranteed at least four more years of entertainment. Perhaps we should consider another of the statements made by our own Declaration of Independence: “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends [Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness], it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government.” How happy are we now, kiddos? Huh? ‘Cause I don’t feel too damn happy about it.