Where the score’s made up, everybody’s friends after the game, and millions of people die
So, back from an extended hiatus, cause I’ve been busy, (read: lazy) and I decided to jump straight back into spicy takes. As you might glean from the intro to this blog, I dabble in politics a bit. Okay, a lot. Too much, in fact. So much that I recently started greeting everybody with a limp handshake and a promise to get their job back. Now, I just decided to pop on here, and write about a lil’ thing that bugs me about modern politics. First though: I’m not gonna pretend this is some revolutionary shit. Others probably observed it before, and it’s probably not a whole new phenomenon. But, since this blog’s mine (ALL MINE, MUAHAHA!), Imma rant about it all I fuckin’ want.
So, on to the actual thing. Two things, actually, which I’m calling, as per the title, Harry Potter and Sportsball politics. Let’s start with Harry Potter politics, since that’s the one that bugs me most. Simply put, HP politics is when someone, usually a liberal (in the American sense), draws a direct paralell between real-world politics and Harry Potter, or any piece of pop-culture really. It’s most egregious within the #Resistance, that movement of mostly white, middle and upper-middle class people who object to Trump mostly because he’s a mean, crude man. They’ll compare the president to Voldemort, his stooges to the death eaters, they’ll photoshop a lightning shape on Hilary Clinton’s forehead, they’ll compare Liz Warren to McGonagall, and so on and so forth.
Now, this seems innofensive enough, just a bit of silly fun by rich liberals with nothing better to do, right? right? Would I be writing this if I thought it was? Yeah, nah. This shit is (1) not funny (2) not cute and (3) indicative of how little these types of people understand politics. Now, I am a proud leftist, why am I shitting on Liberals, you might ask? Well, simple, (1) liberals (as understood in America) are not leftists and (2) I enjoy shitting on liberals. Probably more than on conservatives, to be honest. Dunking on conservatives is like shooting fish in a barrel. With a thermobaric missile.
Now, why do I think HP politics is such a nuisance and should disappear forever, preferably with the series itself, and its TERF-y author? Well, it all comes down to the implicit political message of the Harry Potter series as a whole (which is also the political message of a bunch of pop-culture, not HP exclusively). That message, distilled to its purest essence, is this: society is fine, it does not need to change in any meaningful way, evil is both (1) as obvious as a brick to the face and (2) a character flaw (softly implied to be genetic in Voldemort’s case), and if society could just work as planned, we could ignore evil dudes and focus on levitating couches and shit. This is a problem because (1) sometimes, societies need to change in meaningful ways, and half-measures ain’t gon’ cut it (think slavery: radical change was needed, sooner rather than later), (2) evil is much more complicated than “evil wizard bad” (or “orange man bad,” if you will), and is more often than not the result of years and years of incompetence, mixed with some opportunistic malfeasance, and (3) echoing both previous points, the problem is not “orange man,” it’s that we live in a society structured in such a way as to give a cruel, opportunistic moron outsized influence over billions of lives (Yes, billions. American politics are world politics now, wether we like it or not).
When your political frame of reference is Harry Potter Politics, you’ll only be able to notice an idiot like Trump as evil, cause he’s the only one that’s dumb enough to announce his evil shit first (the wall, the camps, the muslim ban, the trans ban,etc.). You’ll then get totally blindsided when some buzzkill leftist like me comes along and says “yeah, Obama built those camps, Obama drone-striked like it was going out of style, Obama only became pro-gay when it was politically expedient, etc.” Plus, once you get your “chosen one” (Hilary in 2016, Biden in 2020(Godfuck, America’s so stupid)) into office, its back to brunch with ya, and politics becomes white noise again. Meanwhile, the healthcare system’s fucked, the planet’s burning, children are still in concentration camps, and the “chosen one” is dumping tons of bombs into middle-eastern weddings cause the groom might have met Bin Laden’s nephew’s son’s wife at some point. Wow, this got longer and meaner than I intended. Sorry, liberals. If it makes you feel better, I like you more than conservatives; just because I think they’re intentionnaly cruel, while I think you’re just daft as fuck. For christ’s sake, Harry Potter literally joins the wizard secret police at the end; ain’t you supposed to be against the Gestapo?
But hey, let’s lay off the libs and thermobaric some fish! Cause this next thing, sportsball politics, is really fucking obvious among republicans! In short, sportsball politics is when you treat politics like it’s a football game; you root for your team, you hope they win, but you don’t think that (1) you can impact the outcome and (2) that it’ll change a goddamn thing either way. It’s the polar opposite of HP politics’ resistance-porn but, in practice, they create the same effect: apathy. HP politics tells you that someone is fated to fix everything; sportsball politics tells you there ain’t nobody to fix anything. So, following the logic of sportsball fans, you just back your team come hell or high water. Or, in the Republicans’ case, even when your candidates are: credibly accused of sexual assault (Donny T), credibly accused of paedophilia (Roy Moore, Don Ton), credibly accused of Neo-Nazi sympathies (Steve King, From the D to the T), just a goddamn lunatic (Donnnnnnnaaaaald), etc. Because, at the end of the day, if the guy that creeps on teens is on your side, he’ll get your vote.
But why does any of this shit matter? Well, both of them further solidify politics as both a popularity contest and a fandom when, in reality, it influences all of our lives. This is where I bring back my earlier comment, about American politics being world politics. Because of its oversized influence in the West, America’s internal politics are a goddamn nightmare for foreigners. It goes from kinda mild (if shit goes down in the US, you can be goddamn sure Canada’s getting splattered a bit, Google Maxime Bernier election 2019 for reference) to fucking horrifying (google any middle-eastern country, or Chile, or Vietnam, or any other country where America decided to swing its dick). Whenever America holds one of its century-long elections, the rest of the world holds its breath, hoping its the guy who’ll fuck them without lube instead of the one that’ll sodomize them with a baseball bat. And make them pay for the privilege.
But, how do we avoid these pitfalls, you might ask? Well, I’m not an expert honestly. I do have a suggestion: DO YOUR GODDAMN HOMEWORK FOR ONCE! It’s an election, not a goddamn spelling bee! Do some research on candidates, stop taking them at their word. See what their voting record is, find out if they’ve been accused of rape, or if they ever burned a cross in someone’s yard. Libs, stop looking for a self-insert politician; political change comes from mass movements, not your childish fantasy of Kween Hilary or whatever. GOPers, stop backing Nazis and rapists; is that so hard?