Sunday, November 09, 2008

Loose change

You know, I very much agree with Carrie Underwood that celebrities really shouldn't make political statements. Ever. Think about it: most celebrities are both extremely uneducated AND wealthy, which means that not only will their political beliefs often be astoundingly ignorant, but they'll also be unrepresentative of most Americans' views. It doesn't matter what side of the political debate celebrities are coming from. I cringed just as much when Britney Spears voiced her support for W in 2003, as when Sean Penn wrote an open letter to him in 2002.* I guess what it all boils down to is the following: who gives a crap who Pete Wentz wants for President?

I may not be a celeb, but I also tend to abstain from making political comments, both in my blog and in most of my personal interactions, because I'm not a very politically active person, and because I despise political arguments. Political arguments are futile, frustrating, and boring. My preferences usually aren't strong enough to warrant making a comment anyway, so I leave that to the passionate politicos that walk among us. You know who you are.

However, I do feel compelled to make a teeny tiny comment about the fact that the United States of America just chose Barack Obama, our first African American President-elect, on Tuesday night, because I am pretty excited and happy about it. I'm not going to make some big political proclamation here or anything. I just feel optimistic and I would be remiss if I didn't comment at ALL about the momentous election season we just wrapped up.

To be honest, for me, the election couldn't have come soon enough. I was bored of the politics and posturing very early on (i.e., about two years ago) as is my custom in presidential elections. When Sarah Palin entered the scene, I officially checked out. Done. I voted early in San Francisco and left City Hall more interested in seeing how the California ballot initiatives would come out (not great, as it turns out -- Prop 8 is pretty disgraceful) than the outcome of the Presidential election. But on Tuesday night, watching the returns come in at an election party in Boston hosted by a Romanian couple, I felt excited and happy. Not Oprah-level excited and happy, but pretty jazzed. More than tapping into some previously undiscovered wellspring of support and love for Obama, I was just happy that our country (or, a majority of it, anyway) seemed energized and engaged, and still does.

It warmed my cold little heart to watch John McCain's extremely classy concession speech (and see his adorable, ancient mother on stage with him in Arizona) and to see the Obamas, with their two cute little girls, take the stage in Chicago. It was all very nice and warm and fuzzy. And perhaps the most touching moment of this whole past week was seeing Elisabeth Hasselbeck, a staunch supporter of McCain and the much embattled lone Republican on the View, speak warmly about Obama and national unity. I think she was slightly full of it, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.

Of course, I know that this warm fuzziness is not shared in all households in our country, and I realize that it will fade quickly into the day-to-day drudgery of life and politics, but it's nice for now. America, f*** yeah.

*I bet Bush was thrilled to get the Spears endorsement.

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