You know, it occurred to me earlier, while I was pondering the recent demise of Justice Antonin Scalia, that America, the Great, —that self proclaimed role model for the world—is nothing more than a school yard full of rotten’, little spoiled children playing an overrated and exaggerated game of Capture The Flag! And when I say school kids, mean it. Children! America is run by fucking children!
It’s true! Our country’s only been alive for a couple hundred years, or so. Yes, I know, it seems like a long time, but it really isn’t, not in the grand scheme of things. The United States, as an entity, is juvenile. Likely in its adolescence. The question now becomes, are we, the collective body of this juvenile entity, entering the pubescent stage, with all the hormonal chaos and drama that it brings? Or are we just now emerging from it, like a butterfly from a cocoon, as mature and responsible global citizens, eager to live up to our theoretical status as “Leaders of the Free World?”
Competition. Games. Children.
So, here’s how it all went down. You see, I’d been browsing random websites on stumbleupon and a bunch of articles started popping up reporting on the intense battle brewing over the appointment of Justice Scalia’s judicial replacement on SCOTUS. Yes, they’re at it already, bitch! I mean, damn it, Janet! The man just died yesterday! Lord, help me! Please give me strength! His body ain’t even gone cold yet and they want to go and start squabbling their bitter politics before the weekend’s even over! That’s shameful, America! Utterly childish behavior! It’s competition for the sake of simply competing and it showed me that it’s not metaphors when people say that politics is just a game.
Politics, as currently practiced, is not about solving America’s many problems, for the benefit of its people. What it’s actually about, at least for powers that be, is sport! It’s my team beats back your team. Again, it’s not about us, it’s really about them and their competitive rivalries. It’s all just a game!
Furthermore, the fact that they didn’t at least wait ’til Monday to start bickering is disrespectful as all Hell! (if that place even exists.) Now, I’m not saying the late Justice Scalia was deserving of much respect, far from it! After all, he was a reliable opponent of humane social progress! You could count on him to always display some backwards ass opinions and block social justice wherever possible, but he was still a human being! He was still somebody’s family. Somebody’s child. Somebody’s grand-father. Therefore, he (and those who survive him, at least) deserves a chance to grieve first. His family deserves better than that!
I then recalled another video I’d stumbled even earlier. Ya , I was on stumbleupon for a hot minute. That day! Anywho, it was of an interview with Noam Chomsky, the influential American Linguist, on the Al Jazeera-English network. In the video, Mr Chomsky was asked about his endorsement for president in our upcoming election. Here’s what he said,
“Well, let’s put it this way. My vote would be against the Republican candidate. If you abstain, that’s a vote for the Republican candidate.”
Now, I generally look up to Mr. Chomsky. He is a brilliant person and we often share many of the same ideologies regarding what a fair and just world looks like. Noam’s a mature and reasonable guy and I agree with him in this case, also. But, what he said finally triggered something in me. It gave me the realization that it’s all just a game. A sport among the elite. Like big-game hunting or the gladiators back in Roman times. You know, the ruling class used to throw its citizens into lion’s dens and watch them get eaten alive for amusement. American politics is no different. It provides exhilaration and stimulation for the wealthy, as they choose their sides and battle for dominion over their opponents. And, at the end of each round, they each get to cash out their high scores and redeem them for policies and legislation that benefits their special interests and enterprises. They are players and we are only the pieces. No matter who wins the game, both players will walk away intact and full of resources, able to join the game again tomorrow, or wait it out for generations until the odds are better. However, you and i, on the other hand, will be left to piece our lives back together in the wake of all the chaos their destructive game has wrought.
Capture The Flag
Does anyone remember the game Capture The Flag? OMG! It was so much fun! The rules are simple. Each team has their home base and each home base has its flag. The players have to steal the other team’s flag and take it to their home base without getting caught, all while also protecting their own flag from those who’d wish to steal it. Laser tag has the same idea and it’s super fun! But the game is, by its very nature, a fierce competition. It’s analogous to the game of war, when you think about it. Us vs. Them. Team mate vs. Rival. Friend vs. Enemy. B’cuz if you don’t take him out first, he will certainly come for you and your flag! Believe that.
But in this emerging age of abundance and high technology, the age of genetic manipulation to cure disease and 3D printed any and everything, where does that competitive attitude prove still beneficial? Space itself might be expanding throughout the universe at an accelerating rate, but the world, our home, is shrinking. And, she’s shrinking quite rapidly, too!
Technological progress has made the world ever smaller each year. It is now possible to interact and conduct business with almost anybody in almost any country on Earth. Instantly! The world has never been so connected. And since we’re all neighbors now shouldn’t we be forming community benefit organizations instead of fighting each other over every little difference of opinion? I wonder what life would be like if politicians, governments, and corporations stopped competing against each other and began cooperating. I mean, if I scratch your back and you scratch mine, who looses? Which side walks away empty handed? Neither! Humanity makes progress and moves on to its next challenge. Maybe then we could finally get some work done and make this planet a better place for all of us to call home.
Indulgent blessings upon you, my children!
Sister Dharma Gettin’