Approaching the midterm election, I was very apprehensive. I knew the electorate would regard the economic woes of the past two years as President Obama’s fault—having unfairly developed a convenient amnesia about the erstwhile Bush administration. Admittedly, I have been very disappointed over the bailouts and the stimulus packages, which unsurprisingly did not trickle down to the middle class, let alone to the working class, the impoverished, and the utter indigent. Nevertheless, I still had hope that folks would reason they could not vote for political candidates who to a greater or lesser degree endorse the policies of the executive branch what got us into this mess in the first place.
I was wrong!
Any reference to some halcyon day of peace, contentment, and economic bliss, I have long since realized, is sheer nonsense and fundamentally insulting to those who have been underrepresented and underserved for decades. In my opinion, it is disingenuous to make the claim that tax cuts for the wealthiest in the United States will benefit the rest of the economy and somehow transform paupers into ebullient purchasers. Reducing the taxes of the rich does not redound to the favor of anyone but the rich: it does not create jobs, raise the minimum wage and household income, or change them into philanthropists of the poor. It is a curious form of welfare, and the masquerade continues while millions languish in abject poverty.
We cannot continue in this fashion.
Over the next two years, the U.S. House of Representatives will simply flail in the water, rather than make any significant headway. The economic recession that we are in will scarcely rebound, and they will be the victims of their own criticism of the Obama administration. Regrettably, in politics, what goes around comes around. Hence, in 2012, that biracial man with the big ears and the inveterate mole by his nose will be a picture of health and strength and vision once more!
In the meantime, we cannot waiver in our persistent fight against the conservative juggernaut seeking to wreak havoc upon the masses without rhyme or reason. Because they will take every opportunity to replace social programs with empty promises about jobs and to replace opportunity with a not-so-subtle diatribe depicting America as some cheery meritocracy. The future of our children prohibits us from such folderol.
And yes, we can!
Don’t get me wrong, I am not predicting Obama’s country will become a sort of panacea; rather I am asserting that the only viable counter to the destruction through the inevitable destruction of the conveyers of conservative politics is an increasingly progressive praxis that puts power in the hands of the people. Obama should forge ahead and run into brick walls as he tries to elevate the middle class, reinvigorate the public schools, frustrate global warming, refuse militarily to police the entire world, and serve the countless numbers suffering at the bottom of the major life indices.
Langston Hughes’ poem, “Let America Be America Again,” was really a revelation of the fact that America had always been a pipe dream for many looking for the promises of freedom and democracy. We are not there yet, and will never be. But we can steadily get closer, if we only have the will.