You know how when you WANT to talk about something but know you can’t, talking about other things are just hard?
Nope, I’m not pregnant or moving or doing anything special and nobody is sick or anything bad. What I can’t talk about is what is going on in the US.
I can’t talk about it because I don’t exactly know what to say…
On the one hand, nothing in my world is changed in the ‘vast’ 11 days we have had a new president. There is however, a much higher level of political talk around me and that is different. People are excited and activated and looking to pounce on either side of the line.
The optimist side of me is wondering if this new awareness and watchfulness is a GOOD thing because either nothing happened for 8 years or we just didn’t watch and I lean toward the later…. However, the swing to hyper vigilance has the cynic in me wondering if we are now suddenly scared of our shadow.
I spent my college years studying history and political science. I ended up focusing on Nazi Germany, half because one of the best professors taught many classes in the area, and half because it was an interesting system to study. In addition to the Nazi era classes, I took an entire class on the US constitution, another class on the Federal Justice system, another entire class specifically focused on US political parties and movements. ( I also took the normal general Europen history, a diversity class called “African American History”, and plenty more to round out my double major). What I’m saying is that politics are complex. There is more to ‘drain the swamp’ than a slogan – I’m all for getting some of the crony politics out BUT sometimes those cronies are the only ones that know where the budget for bullets is on the share drive (I joke.. I hope…) When I look at the political circus right now I wonder if it is a big LOOK OVER HERE while something worse is going on over there. Or maybe it is an honest hot mess and nobody knows what is going on anymore. Or possibly, the news is short on murders so to the bag of political adjectives and hyperbole we go.
In the light of all that, I can’t say what I think on any given political situation because I know I only know the smallest percent of fact surrounded by a giant elephant snot of opinion and spin.
Now back to the Nazi thing. The Nazis, with a capital N, were a specific group of people who were in the 1920-45 National-Socialists party, led predominantly by Hitler, and on a mission to pull Germany out of WWI depression. Their uber-nationalist message was easy for Germans to believe in because they told the Germans they were great and that the blame for their trouble rested squarely on these specific ethnic people, and, anyone not pure in general so they could also lump in gay or handicapped, or anyone who objected etc. I don’t believe there are any Nazi’s left, if they are, they are very very very old. I’ve gotten in trouble for ‘defending’ Nazis in the past because I contest that there were quite likely people in that political party that were simply career buracrats that were not actually acting one way or another and to hold every person responsible for what a core group did/orderd seems equally unfair. Small n nazi is still a thing, it is using a rhetoric of xenophobia and nationalism and that shoe does seem to fit a certain group.
However. Those Nazi career paper pushers were guilty of not standing up. That is clear. That is what we are all taught as a lesson in history. Is that what is happening now? Are we in the beginning? I know a lot of people feel that way and are marching and shouting and protesting and calling and doing everything to make sure that they are not seen as guilty to a future generation. I’m proud of the people trying but I also see that they are going in 105 different directions and working from vague information and could be just as easily being manipulated to burn themselves out early so in 2 years they will be back to discussing reality stars or football.
I can only control my own self and I will be keeping track of what is going on. I’m not going to waste energy over reaction BUT I am not sitting complacent. My hope is that I’m not alone realizing that we all need to be more watchful but we also need to get good information and not feed into the hysteria at every turn. Then I wonder if a little more hysteria might have saved a few lives in history.
There is no ‘in conclusion’ here. We are living through the history of 2017. I’m conflicted between not wanting to be a reactionary squid of anger, and, not wanting to be the slowly boiled frog. When I write about kids and crafts and household things I don’t want people to think I’m without knowledge of the world around me but I am choosing to publish something positive because I at least know my home to be true and I can share that with those who want to read.