Saturday, August 25, 2012

What if This Were the Last Election . . .

Watching the presidential race these days, I am left wondering once again what has happened to our country.

The media kaleidoscope's words and images run past: You can't be impregnated by rape (Todd Akin). . . Medicare is a waste of money and should be completely dismantled, and billionaires should have more tax breaks (Paul Ryan) . . . innocent children and families still being killed in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in Syria . . . no money for education or healthcare, but plenty for more guns,  bombs, aircraft carriers . . . voter ID is unconstitutional, but it has been enacted in several states.

It becomes not only a question of what our country's founders must make of all of this. We could also wonder what our Native ancestors must think of us.

And I am left wondering some days, if we should care any more, since our caring is so deftly ignored. I'm wondering if we should waste time on shock or anger at yet another ignorant statement, law or bit of rhetoric from a sadly out-of-touch white male politician.

I'm wondering if we shouldn't all just retreat to growing our own vegetables, teaching our children or the neighbor's children how to read and write and do math. If she shouldn't just get rid of our televisions, use the internet sparingly. Stop supporting mega-gun Hollywood films that worship at the altar of cultural division and killing and heartless machismo.

I'm wondering if it "counts" -- all our shock and anger at how un-democratic our "democracy" has become.

Like the settlers who went out west, the Native Americans who refused to let their cultures die out, we are maybe better off dropping out of what the Powers That Be say we should care about.

Better off by not owning a great car, and hitting all the right shops and restaurants. Better off not living as a consumer, as participant in the contest.

Better off by going to Nature for our wisdom, our sense of self.

Better off reading books, playing music, hiking or biking, instead of struggling with worries about budgets, personal or national. Instead of making it all a bless-ed, all-American competition. Instead of insisting who's right and who's wrong.

This may take a minor earthquake within. It will mean turning within to our souls and out to the Universe for our direction, our mindset and priorities, instead of our assumed roles as consumers, citizens, voters.

What if we just decided to laugh at everything else?

In this country, once so well known for holding so many possibilities -- what if we said, What if?