Electoral blues and seeing red

A reaction to election night, as of Nov. 5.

Will Nelson, Senior Columnist

If you are reading this article, it means that it’s at least Nov. 11, 2020: six days after the night that I am currently writing from. A lot can happen in six days – especially these particular six days – so I’m trying to write with an open mind.

Nov. 3 was a hard night for a lot of people, and I saw a lot of people wearing sunglasses, drinking coffee and slamming Advils the following morning saying things like “Jesus, it’s bright out here!” and “Why is everything so loud?”

Can we blame them? It was a long night.

Before I go further, I feel like I need to acknowledge the fact that my perspective on this election – as a cis-gendered white male – is coming from a place of privilege. The results of the election may affect me but at the end of the day, none of my basic human rights were on the line. Without the lived experience of being part of one of the marginalized groups directly harmed by the Trump administration’s actions, my perspective is limited to empathy, which can only extend so far. 

Leo Coughenour

I’m a little ashamed to admit it, but even after 19 years of realizing how messed up the adult world is, I still felt the crackling heat of disillusionment on election night.

As of right now, it looks like a Biden victory. Could that change? Absolutely. I hope that those of you in the near future have a clearer vision of what the country’s fate is going to look like, but to be completely honest, I wouldn’t stake any money on it. These are bizarre and mystifying times.

From the beginning, there wasn’t really a good option. We were choosing between being thrown into a “Mad Max” quasi-fascist hellscape and slipping back into the subtle licentiousness of depraved neoliberal bologna. One of them is definitely preferable, but neither of them involves a win for the American people.

I’m a little exhausted by people on this overwhelmingly liberal campus celebrating Biden’s current lead with such pep and zeal. Yes, we should be happy that Trump is behind but don’t make the mistake of thinking this is any sort of victory.

Your “Uncle Joe” was complicit in bombing civilians during the Iraq War and has numerous allegations of sexual misconduct against him. Please stop treating him like a cute grandpa. 

Election day is over. You can stop using that Biden-Harris flag as a bedspread now.

On top of that, Biden is categorically not what America needs at this point in history. He’s pulled out some flowery language and pretty promises these last few months, but he still represents a system of politics whose flaws have been brought into painfully sharp relief recently. He’s an imperialistic old-world politician in a world so new you can still smell the sweat from the exploited factory workers on it.

“He isn’t Trump,” but is that really the standard we’re going to hold ourselves to?

You do not stay with the same car insurance just because your agent doesn’t embezzle money and spit in your coffee. America can and must do better than this. 

I’m realizing that this article has gotten a little negative and, though I see the value in a little negativity sometimes, that wasn’t really my intent. 

It’s incredibly easy to get wrapped up in federal politics since it gets so much media coverage, but we really shouldn’t lose sight of the power of community. 

I’ve cast my feeble little vote and my say in who is the next president of the United States is, but looking around, there is more than enough work for all of us in our own areas. 

Don’t feel represented by your national leaders? Look to your local leaders – district reps, state senators, even just active community members. 

There’s a lot of anger going around – and I think that anger is very well justified – but I think those of us who have any semblance of privilege should all make a conscious effort to channel that anger into productive action.

Keep one eye on the big things that are happening out of your control, but keep your hands busy with the things you can.

In other words, as my mom used to tell me, “think globally, act locally.