Politically, there seems to be a lot going on in the world right now.
The Middle Eastern region is on fire with protests against despots.
Libya is coming under intense pressure from the rest of the world to reject its tyrant.
And the United States of America is starting to feel the backlash of its right-wing shift.
I’m sure everyone by now has at least heard of the protests in Wisconsin over the Republican governor, along with the state congress, wanting to take away collective bargaining rights from unions. The labor protest that followed is something that, I believe, was largely unexpected by the right wing. I’m sure it was assumed that the bill would pass without much of a hiccup, and I’m sure that the Republicans were salivating at the thought of the next steps they could take to fuck over unions. Instead, this debacle took place. In the following days it came out that the governor of Wisconsin had been bought by a billionaire – as if no one saw that coming, right? And now he’s a joke, a laughing stock, even to his Republican colleagues. He committed the cardinal sin of becoming exposed as the corruptible lackey he is, and is now a leper in the eyes of his former political allies.
So, between the GOP trying to ream labor unions, attempting to pass bills that would excuse the murder of abortion doctors, and attempting to cut funding to Planned Parenthood, you must be feeling pretty hopeless right about now. Just try to remember that good things have been happening, too.
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was repealed. This is a monumental stride forward for gay rights in America.
The Obama administration will refuse to defend the Defense of Marriage Act in court, because they deem the law, which refuses to recognize same-sex marriage on the federal level, as unconstitutional. While this is not an immediate win for gay rights, it is definitely a step in the right direction, and it’s a necessary hoop to jump through in securing an eventual victory for equality.
The obvious “wins” recently in the culture war were on the front of equality, and while this may seem a bit one-sided and narrow, I think it’s indicative of a sea change in the sentiment of Americans. I think, for the most part, Americans are progressively inclined. The reason that the right-wing reactionary machine gains so much steam is because it has become highly efficient at convoluting the issues and at creating fear in the voting base, while the left-wing engine seems to stall out and is unable to energize and galvanize the constituency.
I think we may end up seeing more protests if the GOP powerhouse attempts to overextend its reach. It’s a stark contrast to the Tea Party protests we’ve seen in the last two years, and it’s about time, too. Working class people are standing up for their own interests instead of defending the ridiculously wealthy from seeing a tax increase that would ultimately benefit them. The rest of the world seems to be waking up and standing against tyranny. While I don’t think our oppression is great at all in comparison, we certainly didn’t seem to be standing up to the corporate muscle that buys our politicians until now.
Here’s hoping for a path to progression instead of a trail to regression. Cheers.