The current political climate in the United States can only be described as jaw-dropping. At the moment, all eyes are focused upon our newly elected president who seems to have come from nowhere to gain both the nomination of the Republican Party and the White House. By no means should we blame our current political predicament in the world, our loss of respect from our allies, for example, solely on the vagaries of our new president.
For years, we voters have allowed both political parties to gerrymander the political landscape until we no longer have real choice. We call ourselves a Democracy, but with district lines hardened, choice is a myth. The results of our elections allow one-sided proposals that can hardly be treated seriously. The wonder is that they are. For example, to accommodate Alabama probate judges who don’t want to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, the legislature is considering Senate Bill 20. It proposes to eliminate marriage licenses for everyone. (FFR Newsletter, March 16, 2016) Problem solved in the minds of some.
Every day, in so many ways, we expose the contradictions within human nature. Nordstrom dropped Ivanka Trump’s jewelry collection last month in sympathy with a boycott. In defiance, buyers turned to the internet. Before the boycott, her line ranked 55th in fashion sales. Now it ranks 11. (“Business,” The Week, March 24, 2017, pg. 32.) When her father, our president, paid $25 million to escape fraud charges and settle the suit his students brought against his for-profit real estate school, similar institutions, DeVry and Universal Technical Institute, among them, saw their stock rise by between 42-108%. (Ibid, pg. 32.)
The whiff of insanity exists everywhere. As the U.S. Senate considers appointing the man most likely to overturn a woman’s right to abortion (Roe V. Wade), Texas considers a contrary measure. Lawmaker Jessica Farrar has introduced the “Man’s Right to Know Act. “ The bill imposes a fine on men who masturbate. The habit, she argues, wastes human semen which is sacred and should be used only “for creating more human life.” (Ibid, pg. 6.)
Okay, that last proposal is tongue-in-cheek. Farrar doesn’t suppose her bill will pass, but it’s no crazier than assuming ova are sacred. Unfortunately, in the 21 Century, a woman’s rights never compares to a man’s. Consider the Brazilian soccer player, Bruno Fernandes de Souza. In 2010, he was sentenced to 22 years in prison for the kidnapping, torture and murder of 25 year-old model Eiza Samudio, the mother of his child. The reason: she had the temerity to ask for child support. Last month Fernandes de Souza was given early release. The game needed him more than the country needed to uphold justice. The moment he’d gained his freedom, he signed a contract to play for Soccer club Boa Esporte. No, we can’t blame all our ills on Donald Trump. The insanity is us.