A Girl With Nice Bangs and The Answers to Solving Political Apathy Among the Young and Intelligent
January 31, 2007
A girl sitting across from me on the subway this afternoon had very nice bangs. I started wondering what she’d look like without bangs, then I continued wondering, then, finally, I finished. Wondering. And then I laughed. Because she would have looked SO funny. Then I decided to blog. Then I blogged. Then I cleared my browser history, emptied my temporary internet files, hid the tissues under my bed, smoked a cigarette. Now I’m writing about political apathy.
The rest of the saladeers seem to be doing a fine job with political commentary without my having to chime in – so I’m not going to chime. Chime-a-lime. Chime-a-lime-dime. A-dinkle-do.
That was a song.
Anyway, all I want to say is this: when it comes to politics – I don’t care.
It really bothers me that I don’t care. I tried, today on the subway when I was done laughing at the bang-ed girl, to care about politics. Because I know that political apathy is a problem. But is it my problem?
Truth be told, if I were to have any political ideas, opinions, or leanings, they wouldn’t be pretty. I’m decently sure I’m a fascist – and even then, I just had to Google the word to make sure I spelled it right. Because – untruth be revealed- I’m not a fascist. I’d like to be, but the minute I see someone suffering, and they would suffer, I’d want to abandon the whole thing. And, to further clarify, I’m not talking fascism in the general sense, I’m talking about the more connotative (for me at least) definition wherein the state is run by people who know better and you listen to them and shut up, because…they know better. Here comes a grand revelation! – this is a terrible, terrible idea.
So, like, I’m stuck with democracy, a system wherein you have to listen to idiots talk, because everyone gets a turn to talk, and wherein you then have to watch the talking idiots talk everyone else into running around in their idiot circles. And I understand that this is necessary, because the world is just too big, and too full of people, for the relative ease with which government could be carried out – to actually become a real possibility. But come on. There are just too few exceptions to this pattern.
And so, I just don’t care. The end result is that I just wish we’d get around to re-invigorating American democracy with a new or redeemed political party. I want to see the Whigs make a comeback, and I have absolutely no reason for this desire other than the fact that I just like saying, writing, and reading “Whigs.” If you want a “real” explanation of why the Whigs should return, maybe Dailysalad will give you one. I’m sure it would be good, even if he takes the opposite approach and chooses instead to identify the potential dangers of a Return of the Whigs. Dailysalad, my man, that just might be a challenge!
Returning to the problem…I’m having some trouble not caring about politics. The same things that make me laugh and sneer at our government and its followers, actually make me cry inside as well. And when I cry inside, tears come out of my nostrils when I sneeze, and that’s F-N weird!
I sleep at night by pulling faith outta this: despite the less-than-ideal goings-on (SO MANY DASHES IN THIS POST!) of our government and despite the all-too-widespread idiocy (or naivete) of its people, I think we’ve got a lot going for us. I allow myself political apathy because I’ve resigned myself to my inability to place value in most of the above. It just isn’t for me. Thankfully, since we nonetheless still have a lot going for us, I can focus on what I think is the best possible solution – education.
And I don’t mean just facts and skills. In fact, and in skills?, I hardly mean facts and skills. Part of the current problem we seem to be having when it comes to electing Presidents who can at least…oh, I don’t know…talk straight…is that we seem to think education begins with learning facts and skills, when really, it comes from experience, maybe even pain. I know! – again with the revelations!
The brunt of it: one of the primary political challenges we’re going to face going forward is how to rediscover – not maintain or foster – the political spirit of the individual. And I don’t think this is going to be easy to accomplish when everyone’s so safe and snuggly at home in front of their TVs, which were bought with the money given to them because they know facts, and have the skills necessary to move those facts around in circles at their jobs. Maybe if we realized or admitted that we don’t know much about what’s going on around us, we wouldn’t be so quick to believe people who seem to know what they’re talking about (and what we’re supposedly thinking, what we supposedly want) just because they spout out lots of facts in loud voices and come up with enough money to fly around the country…spoutin’ loud.
That’s probably as idealistic as the rest of what I’m shoveling – the idea that there ever was a true democratic political spirit in the first place that’s waiting around somewhere in our past to be rediscovered (through life-education, no less). But what can I say? The only alternatives that I can see are fascism and…Whiggin Out!
And I still have no recollection of who the Whigs were or whether or not my mere mention of them might throw the whole mood of my post out of whack. Ah, well…