Realism for an Abstract Country
I keep having these Oscar Schindler moments. You know, the part at the end of Schindler’s List when he says, "Maybe I could have saved one more life."
You could say it’s in the blood.
Maybe I should have sandbagged my blog with more political entries, as if I hadn’t been doing it enough already. Or maybe I should have finished that Bush editorial I was writing for the view section, which compared the ill-logic of invading Iraq to abstract painting. I thought it might sound too elitist, but I can sum it up easily enough:
If the Iraq war makes perfect sense to the average American voter, I expect to see Willem De Kooning posters selling like hotcakes at Nascar rallies.
No, I think instead of sulking in this cataclysmic let-down, I’ll simply gather myself up and plan for the little bits of goodness that will surely come from living my life—spending time with my wife and our soon-to-be child.
Because the onus is not on me or anyone who had the good sense to recognize how messed up things really are. It never was. The burden of proof in the next four years lies with the people who voted for George W. Bush’s second term, knowing full well the record of his first.
And despite what some predicted, the Democrats did not go the way of the Whigs after 9/11. They held together and lost to a small margin in numbers. Talk of new parties and rearranging the electoral system are certain to happen and are a healthy part of our democracy. But there should be no deserters. The split line in this race demonstrates that the resistance is alive and kicking. It may need to regroup. It may need to rethink. But we should never be taken for granted again.
Because complacency for power’s sake is still wrong, and indifference to wrongness will always be a sin.