Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Dealing with the Politics of Life

We are awash in political happenstance each day. So much so that I think we often forget that there are people there with real emotions and real justified fears. One of the growing number of progressive groups I'm a part of asked a very valid question regarding the other side of this national debate wondering how to move forward in our new today so we can actually have a bearable tomorrow. It was a valid question that started with an article about identity politics. Before I post what I said in response to this counter news story I want you to really see this as it is or at least as I see it.

I find the words 'identity politics' a misnomer.  The truth is we all have an identity that we closely relate to and define. The implication of this article is that only 'othered' populations garnered attention and by negating the 'norm' or read White Male Christian Straight it alienated those populations. My issue in general I realized while reading this piece and I wont actually link it because the news source is baited at best, is that within the dichotomy of inclusion for some populations it assumes the need to exclude all others. Its a very basic 'us vs them' mentality that is literally pulling this country apart. 

While making a point to stop being so aware of those other populations is a blatant call to disregard the true fabric of this country and its people. The GOP didn't win by a landslide as the rhetoric here implies. They won by small traceable margins that can be correlated back to very specific points including upheaval of the Voting Rights Act which allowed several states where GOP candidates won by less than 100,000 votes to deny sometimes upward of 300,000 voters to be counted. Stop! Reread that sentence slowly and let the weight of it hit you:

They won by small traceable margins that can be correlated back to very specific points including upheaval of the Voting Rights Act which allowed several states where GOP candidates won by less than 100,000 votes to deny sometimes upward of 300,000 voters to be counted.

Yes the gutting of the Voting Rights Act allowed unconstitutional restrictions on voting to be put into place to sometimes prevent almost 3 times as many people from voting as the margin of victory for some candidates actually was. 

What we need to focus on now is information control because the calls to 'get over it' we won are hiding what they now know to be the last gasping breath of a dying rhetoric. They pulled every trap door, they used every ACME emblazoned scheme and still only barely inched out a win. Now what they need to do is convince us of a false narrative which is that there are more of them then there are of us. So they try and overwhelm us be centralizing and controlling tiny communities on the web. They seek us out on our 'liberal left biased media' you know like The New York Times and Reuters to tell us how inaccurate our perspectives are. Its classic gas-lighting. Especially when you realize that all media has always leaned conservative in America. The only reason it is not anymore is because Americans aren't leaning conservative anymore.

There is nothing about what just happened that truly reflects our reality of who this country is really occupied by. Despite the hype, this isn't a problem of not relating to needed populations as its the fallout of a legal sand trap to hamper what they knew was going to be a problem going forward in politics. Those populations and that identity is not a fluke or a whim its America. 

With that being said we can't do this without them. We need the other side of America. They went low, the lowest this country has seen in a long time.  And now more than ever we need to go high. Trust me this is difficult to write because just a day or so ago I was a biting seething mess of F&#% you to the world. But the truth is we don't actually have space time or the liberty to be petty. We have to be inclusive. This was my response as to how to pull those people back who are concerned with the concept of 'identity politics' :

"This is long and something I think about and alter constantly but this is where I'm at today. That one is difficult because I'm not sure identity politics is the problem. I think inclusion is. The truth is a lot of the concerns of the working class that voted Trump are the same as those that are classified as identity political instances. The issue is that no one really treats it that way. We call them idiots for voting against their own interests, while true it really is in the competitive way that it's done sometimes. The best way in my opinion to do it is to remind those lost voters that the only people who do understand their issues are the 'othered' populations in America.  
We need to include them as an 'othered' population. So many of us have been 'othered' for so long it's odd when people talk about it. So when someone does it feels like change. Where Democrats fell deaf this time, where Obama didn't was he didn't have to remind people he was an 'othered' population member. All he had to do was speak the lingo at the right places at the right times.  
Hillary was draped in too much rich white female and it irked them because no matter what she said they seemed to think she looked down on them. A few well publicized comments later they have proof. Emails she's so above the law.  
Trump pretended he was with them and said you can trust me because 'wink wink' I'm white like you and I know you really aren't like these 'othered' populations, no you're special.  
There will always be a decent amount of that side that are just hateful towards anyone that isn't in their group. That's a fact of life. However there are many that just want a group to belong to and that one in many ways was comfortable and felt accepting.  
The national dialogue has changed. They grew up with expectations that 'othered' populations didn't really have and I'm actually very empathetic to that. Had my mother not prepared me for the reality of being a black woman in America I can't imagine how confused I would've spent my life.  
But I try to see it from their perspective, they are seeing people that look like them as not gaining ground and are surrounded by imagery of 'othered' prosperity after a lifetime of expecting different. They don't really always attribute that to hard work. They attribute it to the system being rigged against them. What needs to happen is Dems say yes it is let me introduce you to the people that have been figuring out how to game it back for years. Here they are with open arms.  
There's been tons of butt hurt on both sides. I've been an instigator myself. It's hard for me to swallow that the safety and humanity of people I love seems to mean so little. They are worried about finance and some people are literally worried about survival. The cost is so different but if we can make it about all of our lives and deaths maybe we can find each other. So I'm not sure how to get it there besides doing the work one on one."

For a lot of us the lives of those we hold dear are literally at stake. Do the work. . Our republic is worth it. Our people are worth it.  ALL of our people are worth it.