Listen: we love the wild, the unreasonable, the silly, and the nonsensical. But even we can see that these are not the qualities we want in our politics.
On behalf of our team of global contributors:
There is so much at stake in the United States general elections, with worldwide implications. If you can, please vote.
The current state of politics is absurd. And man, we feel no joy in saying that. Absurdity is the lifeblood of our brand; it can be ripe with artistic inspiration, or the foundation of nontraditional imagination. Brilliant, powerful things can come from absurd thinking. Listen: we love the wild, the unreasonable, the silly, and the nonsensical. But even we can see that these are not the qualities we want in our political leadership.
We cannot tolerate absurdity when it looks like:
- Anti-China rhetoric bubbling into fully-fledged violence against Asian Americans, or the staggering roster of 164 Congress members - all Republican - who refused to denounce this discrimination
- Hysterical pro-life platforms clearly disinterested in the flourishing of all lives, whose tearful pleas discount Black and Brown communities, immigrants, refugees, the poor, the disenfranchised, the down-on-their-luck, the mentally unwell, the disabled
- Conspiracy theories trumpeted as legitimate contrarian inquiry
- This administration’s contempt for scientific evidence and their attempts to combat both a pandemic and climate change with magical thinking; their apparent concern for power over progress
- Our country’s repeated refusal to fully reckon with its founding myths, our desperation to champion a narrative of greatness without the necessary work of reconciliation and restoration
The list goes on, and to be clear, we know that “voting out absurdity” will not be fully realized even in the best-case outcome of this election cycle. We are more conscious now than ever of the systemic inequities nearly inseparable from all American institutions: the staggering corruption at all levels of governments, the evils of our criminal justice system, the long-mangled trust between the people and the people in power.
If you are on the fence, skeptical that your participation makes a difference, or that anybody on the ballot is truly on your side, I sympathize but offer this small plea:
It is all so overwhelming. I know and I hear you. In 2020, the year of the unimaginable, LITERALLY EVERYTHING has felt so absurd in the worst ways. But there is a difference between calling out the absurd to hold their perpetrators accountable, and gaslighting yourself into thinking your vote, and your hope for a more just, dignified future - is silly or unimportant.
YOUR BELIEF IN YOUR VOTE IS NOT ABSURD. It is a pinprick in the grander constellation of work we have to do, yes, but consider it our sun, that bright, burning star most in reach. A better world can be built. Start with your vote.