Last Sunday, I performed in an underground cabaret established by my dear friend Diane and shared the stage with one of my favorite performers, the raw unapologetic talent Violet. Violet began her set with excusing that her act wasn’t as spooky as the Halloween themed show required, that the world was scary enough as it is. I agreed with that part. And then, she made the statement: “That’s why you need to go vote, it’s literally a matter of life or death.” Violet has DID and her main alter is trans. I felt the pain in her voice, and understand that in her view of the world, voting matters. In mine, voting matters not.
I lived in the United States for 17 years before I got the right to cast a ballot. Residing in Chicago, I was swept away by “change” and voted for Obama in my first ever election. By his second term, I was entirely disillusioned and wrote in Vermin Supreme, a man who wears a rubber boot on his head while dropping truth and love grenades. In subsequent elections, I did my due diligence, paid attention, and researched each candidate (or I should say, I bought whatever scam they were selling) and my civil duty was cast towards someone with a D or an I after their name. I never voted Republican. In 2016, I couldn’t bring myself to cast a vote for either Hillary or Donald. In my eyes, Hillary was a war hawk who had stolen the primary from Bernie and Donald was, well, a buffoon. I didn’t cry when Trump got the job. I had a deep-seated hope that he would make corruption and incompetence so obvious, the bandaid over the puss festered wound would be ripped off and we would have to deal with it all and perhaps, finally start healing as a nation. As long as he didn’t start a war. It was more than I hoped for Hillary. I thought we would die of political sepsis if she had the opportunity to sit on the throne and that, surely, we would be engaged in some kind of international conflict. Even if I was swept away by identity politics and wanted to have a woman president, I definitely didn’t want Hillary to be the first woman in history. I hoped for miracles that didn’t come. All of these hopes seem so naive to me now.
I will not be voting anymore. Don’t shoot me.
I’m sure that my email has started flooding with disabled subscriptions after this paragraph from both side of the political spectrum. I get it. No one likes the pacifists. I felt it was important to uncover parts of myself, no matter how flawed they are. That by doing so, trust can be build beyond just my opinions. As I’ve said before, trust is the only meta currency we have left. The sad fact is, no one is allowed to scale the political ladder if they don’t willingly submit to corruption. Not that there aren’t politicians with good intentions out there, they’re just stuck on the bottom rung.
I won’t vote anymore because I don’t want to actively contribute energy to a corrupt institution that requires a complete and total reckoning. I pay quite a bit of attention to politics (oh, the drama!) because policies influence my decisions on whether or not my children go to an institutionalized school, or if I should continue to live in the city, or if I should hodl (not a typo, for my normie friends) bitcoin for dear life. But my energy is better spent elsewhere. Fighting over the candidates is like fighting over which hand holds the whip. And for all my liberal friends who sub to this stack (I know there aren’t that many of you), please know I care deeply about your plight, I just don’t believe your rights (and mine) are anything more than cards in a deck of a game whose players and rules (if there are rules) are unknown to us.
I ran into this post by Russell Blake and took the last three days to add some visuals to it (video above). My son narrated it because it seemed even more poignant from the mouth of babes. And it gave the two of us an opportunity to dissect words like ‘feudalism’ and ‘theist’ as part of his autonomous learning. His twin (who chose to try out an actual public elementary school this year) comes home to tell me that as part of his social studies class they watch the news. When I prodded to ask which station, he responded: “CNN or something like that.” We are indoctrinating our kids one way or another. Let’s hope we offer them a lens as wide as possible so instead of going to the polls where they need to choose between what they consider to be the lesser of two evils, we can show them the game is rigged so they figure out how it can be stopped from being played.
Feel free to shred me in the comments.