Election fatigue. Fiscal Cliff fatigue. War fatigue. War hero sex scandal fatigue. Bomb Iran or not fatigue. Crazy politicians saying psycho things fatigue. Human-engineered natural disasters fatigue. Finger-pointing fatigue. European debt crisis fatigue. Stock market sinking fatigue. Living in precarious economic times (controlled by others) fatigue. Dealing with a failing parent fatigue.
Wow, I am tired. If one or more of these things come to fruition, it (or they) will dwarf the others and can send our nation, our society and/or just me into a tailspin.
In fact, I was too tired to get all excited that President Obama was re-elected. I was more relieved that the months of uncertainty were over. And BOB, who lives in a Red State, wrote a poignant Facebook post just before the election that made me re-think any self righteous glee after the president’s re-election. BOB wrote:
I don’t post, particularly about politics. Others do, for whatever reason. I am certain that whoever wins the election tomorrow, and his supporters, will continue to be reviled and mocked by those that did not vote for him. I do not care who my friends vote for and will respect the fact that they believe what they believe. I do not try to lobby them and I ignore any efforts to lobby me. The diversity we have is what makes us a unique place in the world and what makes no sense to one makes all the sense in the world to another. So, my hope is that on Wednesday morning we get back to (or start) respecting each other, doing good in our own way and not just complaining about what others are not doing the way we see fit, and working together instead of bullying and demeaning, recognizing that it is too late to take all of that money that was spent (read: wasted) campaigning on all levels to help feed hungry mouths here and elsewhere around the globe. And that’s all I have to say about that.
BOB is a good and smart man.
But Nate Silver (fivethirtyeight.com) is my new pin-up boy (ok, so many levels of complexity there). Nate: you have gotten far too many love letters from straight and gay men and women for a numbers geek. I think Brad Pitt’s agent is trying to have the exact tally sealed. It is a Hollywood thing. And that guy with a girl’s name who is really popular now is soooooo not loving you right now. Neither is Karl Rove and that is just fine with me.
But, I digress, comme d’habitude.
I am so tired of our national issues being treated like a really bad reality TV show that masquerades as news.
I am hungry for good news, for hope, for public service without political advantage. I am hungry for good things happening to good people who work hard and do the right thing. I am hungry for a commitment by those of us who have more to share with those who have less. Not wealth redistribution; rather, compassion.
Good policy and hope come from searching, sometimes emotional, debates about our national values and our common future and how we best meet the challenges ahead. It involves compromise and respect. It is not a winner-take-all game.
Until then, the fatigue will slowly, but surely, become indifference or powerlessness. And, assuming it spreads beyond just me to the greater populace, that will bring a good and mighty nation to its knees more surely than any war or any economic crisis could ever.