We Are All Too Good for This

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Call me ignorant or disengaged but I didn’t bother watching the first presidential debate live on TV last night. I already know where my vote will land — my parents always taught me that your vote is no one’s business to know, but I think if anyone knows me as a person they know the box I’ll check. Even still, I frankly am fearing election day — while I pray that the reign of ridiculousness will be over, I also worry any outcome will cause chaos.

So, instead I spent my evening numbing my brain, watching a scandalous series on Netflix and caught up on the mass amounts of work that had piled up in my inbox while I was dual working/supporting virtual learning/maintaining my household for 19 out of 24 hours of my day, as has become my new normal in 2020. I will give myself some credit — I did read about and watch key elements the next morning. However, I don’t know why I even bothered with that. My mental health is already in dire straits these days, and I knew what I would see on that stage: two men bickering and yelling on stage without telling me anything that I don’t already know about them or their platforms. I can’t imagine the decision despair swing voters must be facing this morning after watching what many are calling the most embarrassing presidential debate in history.

I consider myself an educated woman. I also suffer from an excess of empathy that both benefits and hinders me on a daily basis. Frankly, I find the way some of our politicians talk at “us” (ie. the millions of well intentioned, hard working working Americans) downright insulting considering the societal contributions we make.

Thankfully, as an educated woman, I had appropriately deduced that the only thing witnessing the full debate in real time was going to provide me was a sense of anger, shame, anxiety and despair about the future that I am leaving my children. My oldest child is of an age that I should be starting to teach her about government and politics — but she is so sweet and innocent I have decided to abstain on that element of parenting. Here I spend day in and day out preaching to her how to “do unto others” while our leaders throw insults and name call on national television, teaching our next generation that bullying is an acceptable way to get ahead. It is well known that bullying can lead to mental health problems and physical manifestations for children — why on Earth would I want to perpetuate this by allowing my children to watch those who “lead” model this behavior for them and undo all of my hard work? I won’t have it any longer, nor should any other parent in this nation.

If it means I’m ignorant for not watching this debate or the future ones then so be it — my time is in short supply and far too valuable. I refuse to have my intelligence insulted in this way — there are much better ways for me to be “entertained” on television. I’ll of course vote, keep myself educated in alternative ways, live my best life, continue to care for others as I always have and advocate for humanity.

Cancel the damn debates. Rant over.

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