Chicago My mother always insisted after every birthday and Christmas, and it seemed like a host of other occasions, that my brother and I write “thank you” notes. That lesson set hard on my brother, and he embraced it as a good thing. I didn’t disagree with the practice, but often it was bottom-of-the-list-business for me. Nonetheless, as usual, my mother was of course totally right. With the midterms, amazingly, still up in the air, but undoubtedly so much better than any of us with a belief in democracy and our country might have hoped or expected, it continues to be clear that thanks are due for these surprising gifts from the Republican side, so with my mother’s admonitions in mind, here are some.
One “thank you” that just continues to stay on rapid repeat is to former President Trump. His performance wasn’t perfect. Reading the news, it seems sometimes he did shut his pie hole from time to time, but blessedly, he usually couldn’t help himself and with his solid and enduring base was able to foist some wild and wooly, defective candidates on the elephant gang that were abhorrent and repulsive to the voters.
I know it is too much to ask, but might the Supreme Court be forced to learn a lesson from this election as well? Yes, they serve, regrettably, for life, so they are impervious to political will, but they are politically aware, and in the contemporary parlance, they failed “to read the room” when it came to the degree to which they could flip the bird to the overwhelmingly opinion of the public on long settled issues like abortion and make the law up on the fly. They activated the young and women in a way that no door-to-door canvassers or tv ads could have done. They deserve no thanks for their decisions, but for their political deafness and assistance on the midterms, they have to be on the list.
And, a big whooping bunch of appreciation to the crazies out there who allowed President Biden and the Democrats to make these elections all about saving democracy and fighting extremism, rather than about inflation and the president’s personal popularity. I want to be clear here. I’m not talking about the radicals; people who might have a different vision for the country than many of us do. I “are” them. People can have profoundly different views about issues, and still contest them in the public forum, as we progressives do. That’s a fair play in my book. I understand them. They might understand me. My thanks in this election though are to the flat-out crazies. The insurrectionists. The QAnon folks. The white supremacists. The election deniers. The voting fraud folks. The haters, baiters, the string-‘em-uppers, the jail-‘em-nowers, and the whole super MAGA crew that Trump won’t reject, and that scare the living bejesus out of the American public. America is a big place. There’s space for all here still, but not in the Senate or the House of Representatives. Some may sneak in, but voters want to the lock the door. We’ll see if this continues to hold when it comes to the White House soon as well.
I hope I haven’t missed anyone for these gifts, so thanks again, just in case.