By the time I got to put my feet up and get ready to watch the first presidential debate I was feeling pretty good. I mean hey, if I’m not sure about something I can ask my iPhone just about anything and get the right answer. What a great tool, great invention, great company, great country…damn that’s great progress.
But then as I watched the debate and saw Jim Lehrer sputtering along at the speed of a turtle suffering from heat stroke, Mitt Romney looking like a low budget commercial for a 5-Hour Energy Boost and President Obama appearing about as excited as if he were conversing over math homework with a parent at a birthday bowling party for one of Sasha’s classmates, the bottom quickly dropped out of my optimism.
The huge and discomforting contrast is that in everything from bumper stickers to talk radio to political speeches, ads and rallies I am forever reminded about the greatness of our people, our workforce, our cities, our country, our military, our ingenuity, our technology, and our universities and healthcare nonetheless.
Yet staring me in the face from an adjacent angle is the news of the continual dropping of our SAT scores, a falling of our life expectancy, that handguns really are given out to crazy people legally, that our national debt is 16 trillion dollars, that there are elected officials in Congress who think our planet Earth is 9000 years old and that a woman’s body will nearly always reject the pregnancy of a ‘legitimate rape’, that we basically do run on Dunkin Donuts, that Mitt Romney announced his fondness for Jim Lehrer but that it’s important to our economy that he pull the plug on both Jim and Big Bird anyway, and that our President looked as if he was mindfully absent from the October 3rd debate while perhaps rethinking his bogey on the 9th hole of a recent golf match instead of challenging his contender.
So…is this it? Is this the greatness? Is this what we strive for? Is this why we wake up at 6am, fight traffic, pay tolls, pay taxes, work all day and go to bed at midnight? Should I forget the debates, write off Washington and politicians altogether and just watch sports or a repeat of Homeland?
Reverting to my August longing, I really do think that I want Missy Franklin for President. Undoubtedly, I am going to skip watching Joe Biden and Paul Ryan go head to head, as my body is near its safe limit for cringing this month.
But before I stop off at DD on October 16th, grab a medium decaf without sugar and put my feet up while I tune in to watch the next presidential debate that will travel east to New York, I sincerely hope that Mitt will speak with his advisors and understand that his proposal for replacing the Affordable Healthcare Act does not cover pre-existing conditions.
I equally hope that President Obama will realize that the term Obamacare is a slur….and embracing it makes him look silly.
I will wonder if Mitt can make an attempt to sound like he cares about anyone more than 8 years away from applying for Medicare.
I speculate that Michelle will make certain President Obama stays up late to study his material.
I hope enough flags are flying in the halls of Hofstra to serve as a reminder of the threshold we hope can be met.
And if anyone takes a 5-Hour Energy Boost I sure hope that it will be Candy Crowley.
© 2012 Christopher’s Views