Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Election apprehension

I have a few concerns about the election. They are mostly your typical black intellectual paranoia I generally deride when my dad directs it my way. Things like fears of assassination, concerns that an Obama victory will be percieved as some kind of amnesty or absolution of responsibility for the systemic, endemic and institutionalized ways in which this country's actions throughout history have limited opportunities for minorities in general and black folks in particular, and worries that, because there is just about nothing anyone can do to stave off at least a few years of economic doldrums (coupled with the fact that the growing unpopularity of the Pelosi/Reid- led congress means bad things for the midterm elections in 2010), we're looking at another hapless Carter-esque administration, rather than a progressive ascendancy. (I can't help but note how much the democratic agenda has been stymied in the past 30 years, despite the popularity of Clinton.)

On the other hand, our long national nightmare is nearly over. Or so I desperately hope.

I must admit I am also really worried that the 30-minute political commercial that Obama has planned tonight is going to smack of impertinence.  I do think that the Obama campaign knows what it's doing in a way that no one really gives them credit for, so I hope this ends up being a fireside chat rather than something more overtly political.

In California, we'll rubber-stamp the Democratic party regarding the presidency, like always. However, I am less confident of our decisions with respect to two particular initiatives: Props 4 and 8. I was recently good-naturedly ribbed for being so concerned with things that don't have any direct bearing on my life. I suppose that is true if one ascribes to a very limited definition of direct effects, but I've always been given to an outward focus. It hurts me when society hurts other people. It's just how I'm wired.

I'm going to work on my sample ballot today and tomorrow. I'll post some more thoughts soon.

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