11 October 2012

The Dilemma of the Second Debate

I can’t stand it anymore! I wake up every morning with a hangman’s knot in my stomach. This state does not result from any unusual emotional unrest in myself or in those near and dear to me: though we each experience the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, we enjoy the complete and complex engagement of our lives in the world, or, looked at another way, as the engagement in the world of our lives. But since the exceptionally weak performance of the President in the first debate on October 5, I awaken daily to the horror that Mitt Romney could be elected President and that Paul Ryan would serve in the office right down the life to the President. Oh, I think I am safe from the consequences of their policy agenda, but I despair for the lives of my children should the Republicans achieve the Presidency. And what would be the severe consequences for  the country, for the widows, the orphans and the strangers in our midst? Who will ensure that the corners of our fields will be left to the gleanings of those who are most in need? There is nothing that either Romney or Ryan has ever said that calms my terrors. I awaken viscerally to the nightmare every morning.
And so I don’t know if I can stand watching the Vice-Presidential debate tonight and observe anything but a total evisceration of the Republican Party agenda. Unless Joe Biden crushes Romney’s mouthpiece, I couldn’t stand to watch the smugness of the Republican candidate asserting that they do, indeed, have someone other than the rich in mind. When I think of the two Rs I think also of the Weird Sisters who lie with half-truths; I think the Republicans lie without equivocation.
And yet I am drawn to the television as the proverbial moth to the flame, and there seems no way to avoid being consumed in the conflagration. I move toward the light but the consequences in ding so are deadly. Or (to offer another figure of speech) . . . I feel that watching the debate would be akin to paying my entrance fee into the Haunted House because I want to experience--without danger fear and terror--but that when I  enter the winding corridors the terrors that are set out there are not illusions but are all-to-real flesh and blood dangers.  The wax statues turn out to be live and threatening presences. In there are no illusory horrors but only real dangers.
So, tonight I hope for the best but fear the worst. I so long to awaken in the morning with an unknotted stomach.
And now I read in Newsweek the cover story entitled “Heaven is Real.” Isn’t this just more ammunition now available to the evangelical right to support their fascistic agenda. The author says “The universe as I experienced it in my coma isI have come to see with both shock and joythe same one that both Einstein and Jesus were speaking of in their (very) different ways.” I want to remind the good doctor that Einstein was a Jew (well, so was Jesus for that matter), and that the universe of neither is a Christian one. Steven Gimbel’s flawed text Einstein’s Jewish Science is firm proof of that.
I hear over and again Gogo’s complaint and Didi’s assertion, “Nothing to be done!” I despair.


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