This is another video from my YouTube channel, Jack’s World. This video is a thought experiment about capitalism. Specifically, it challenges us to contemplate alternatives that we could actually implement in the real world. Given the current trends in politics, which either glorify or villainize capitalism, I think this sort of idea is increasingly relevant. And it’s something we should contemplate seriously as technology, society, and the world continues to change. Enjoy!
Tag Archives: liberal
Real Politicians Are Talking Like X-Men Villains (And That’s Concerning)
I’ve been reading comic books all my life. A good chunk of those comics are superhero comics. And a good chunk of those superhero comics are X-Men comics. I’ve made no secret of this on this website or my YouTube channel. So, I hope my love of comics, superheroes, and X-Men should be beyond dispute.
That’s why I find it so disturbing when something happens in the real world that is dangerously similar to what I’ve read in so many comics. I used to think in my youthful innocence that people in the real world could never be as evil, heartless, or cruel as the villains I saw in comics. In general, I had a high opinion of people in the real world. Sure, there were assholes here and there. But most were good and most at least try to do good.
That opinion has since been shattered on multiple occasions, but nothing has shattered it more than the current state of politics.
Now, I don’t want to go off on a long rant about how divided people are politically and how toxic political discussions have become. I already did enough of that during major elections. I’ll just note that most of the political figures, be they elected officials or media personalities, who sound like villains are coming from one particular part of the political spectrum.
I won’t even bother being tactful. That villainous rhetoric is coming almost exclusively from conservative republicans in the United States, especially those who identify as being religious or sympathetic to the causes of Christian Nationalists.
These are the people who are pushing for laws and policies that do the sorts of things that X-Men villains seek to do. They actively try to marginalize vulnerable minorities, especially those within the LGBTQ+ community. They spew hate, bigotry, and ignorance of these people. They call them horrible names and constantly accuse them of grooming children, despite the fact that children are far more vulnerable to abuses in churches. They haven’t yet unleashed killer robot sentinels against these communities, but I don’t doubt for a second that they would if they had access to them.
It’s been especially bad for the transgender community. They’ve become some of the biggest targets of this particular wing of villainous politics. A decade ago, conservative republicans at least tried to cloak their opposition. They didn’t show outward hatred to people they hated or didn’t agree with. But after 2016, the masks are coming off.
They don’t seem to be trying to hide it anymore. They hate transgender people. They hate the LGBTQ+ community. They hate anyone who isn’t on their team and will do anything they can to marginalize, hurt, or denigrate them. In Florida, which has become immersed in petty right-wing political discourse, it has gotten especially bad. It’s gotten to the point where a real-life republican has actually cited X-Men to justify his bigotry in support of an anti-trans bill.
I wish this were a side-plot in an X-Men comic. But unfortunately, this is real. Here’s what Vice reported.
Vice: Republican Calls Trans People ‘Mutants,’ Totally Misses the Point of X-Men
A Republican lawmaker in Florida called transgender people “mutants and imps” on Monday in an anti-trans rant that appeared to almost imitate vitriolic lines from X-Men movies.
Florida Rep. Webster Barnaby shared anti-trans views at the state capitol while lawmakers deliberated House Bill 1521, a piece of legislation that would criminalize trans people for using public bathrooms that don’t correspond to their sex assigned at birth.
“I’m looking at society today and it’s like I’m watching an X-Men movie,” Barnaby said at the start of his speech.
“It’s like we have mutants living among us on planet earth,” Barnaby continued. “That’s a fact: we have people that live among us today on Planet Earth that are happy to display themselves as if they were mutants from another planet.”
Now, to be fair, Representative Barnaby has come out and apologized for his remarks. In general, I try to be a forgiving and understanding guy.
However, I can only be so forgiving to people who talk like supervillains.
Seriously, fuck this guy. Fuck you, Representative Webster.
In case you don’t understand why his sentiments were so villainous, here’s a quick reminder of what the X-Men stand for.
They are outcasts.
They are freaks.
They are subject to hate, fear, discrimination, and mistrust.
Despite all this, they try to be heroes. But the villains they often face involve humans who either want to wipe them out completely or make their lives objectively worse on every level.
This asshole, who clearly knows what the X-Men are, didn’t seem to grasp that. He might have seen the first X-Men movie and thought it was a tragedy about a brave senator who tried to pass Draconian laws on an entire class of people. Now, he wants to do the same to transgender people, but it will not stop with them.
We’ve already seen this script play out before. It’s happening as we speak with abortion. It’ll keep happening as long as the people in power believe they can get away with it, keep their jobs, and earn money from their doners, who are often villains in their own right.
People like Representative Webster aren’t going to stop with bullshit policies like this. They won’t stop for the same reason the X-Men’s villains never stop. They believe they can get away with it. They believe they’ll get more power, money, and prestige out of it. Some may very well just be hateful assholes who just want to make people they don’t like suffer.
Those people exist.
I’ve had to deal with them.
But unlike the X-Men’s villains, these people are real. They’ll continue doing whatever they think they can get away with, either out of malice, spite, or just plain ignorance. And we can’t expect superheroes to come along and save us. These are villains we’ll have to deal with.
It’s not as easy or cinematic as Wolverine cutting up a Sentinel attacking the Xavier Institute. But it’s something we all need to be aware of. Because the alternative is letting the villains win in the long run. And take it from someone who has read enough comics about dark timelines and dystopian futures.
We must not let the villains to win.
Filed under Current Events, politics, superhero comics, superhero movies, X-men
It’s Election Day, America. Now Vote!
My fellow Americans, it’s finally here.
I’m as sick of all the campaign ads as you are, but it’s here.
Election Day 2022 is upon us.
Now, I know I’ve been very pessimistic and cynical lately. And I stand by all of that. I still believe that today will mark the last true democratic election the United States will ever have. After today, it’s just a slow and steady descent into Christian Nationalism. Given some of the things I’ve said about organized religion in the past, I fully expect to “suffer a tragic accident” at some point later in my life.
We’re all screwed is what I’m saying.
But that’s all the more reason to cherish this last Election Day. This will be the last time I’ll be able to vote in something meaningful for the country I love. I’m really not looking forward to a bunch of right-wing reactionaries turning this Country into a Fox New fever dream until the world ends. But, as a country and an idea, I think America has had a good run.
Historically, most democracies don’t last for very long. And America has lasted a lot longer than most. I think that still counts as a win in the grand scheme of things. This country succeeded on a level I think few ever expected. There’s a lot to be proud of in that regard. But all good things must come to an end. And today is the beginning of that end.
So please take the time to enjoy it.
Get out there and vote.
Thank you, America. I’ll miss you.
Filed under Current Events
Combating Hate And Politics With Kindness (With Lessons From Mr. Rogers)
We live in a strange time.
I know you could say that about many other periods in history. Even within my own lifetime, I’ve experienced periods that are well beyond the scope of what we think of as normal. The recent upheavals with the COVID-19 pandemic certainly qualify.
But as overwhelming as that was, I still find today’s current state of affairs both unusual and striking. It’s not just that things are changing so fast and we’re all struggling to keep up. That has been a constant for much of the modern world. It’s more that people seemed so overwhelmed, so upset, and so frustrated that they’re forgetting the most basic elements of getting along with fellow human beings.
It’s true. People have always been mean, hateful, and downright cruel to one another. You don’t have to look far into the recent or distant past to see humans committing egregious atrocities on other humans. And I certainly don’t deny there have been worse times in that regard. If you’re alive today, you should consider yourself somewhat lucky. It wasn’t that long ago that such atrocities were both disturbingly common and largely unpunished.
But even with that perspective in mind, I feel like our collective capacity to hate one another has escalated considerably. You could blame politics, going back to the 2016 Presidential Election or even the 2008 Presidential Election. You could also blame the media, pop culture, social trends, religion, and everything in between. I know I’ve criticized those things plenty and will likely continue to do so in the future.
At the end of the day, though, I understand there’s only so much you can do to influence another person. Whether it’s on politics, personal tastes, or personality quirks, we’re all still individuals. We still have our own thoughts, feelings, and biases. That has always been the case. But I can’t recall a time when those elements we all share have been the fuel for so much outright hatred.
It’s easy to notice online, but it’s happening more and more in real life. Real people are committing real acts of violence and hatred towards other people for the simple crime of not agreeing with them on something, be it politics, ideology, or pop culture. It’s getting to a point where the disagreements don’t even have to be about something big like politics or religion. Just being different and existing is now sufficient to invite someone’s hatred.
That is not a tenable state of affairs.
That is not good for individuals, people, or the world in general.
You can blame the internet and political polarization all you want on this, but that only goes so far. At the end of the day, it’s people who still act. It’s people who still speak and send messages through various mediums, be it mundane or hateful. The tools we use don’t create the hate. They may reinforce and spread it. But like it or not, we are the ones that create it. We are the ones that use it as excuses for violence and hate.
I don’t deny that I’ve said dumb things on the internet. I’ve expressed hateful sentiments, both in real life and online. I’m only human and I do regret it. But I also try to counter those inclinations with something stronger. And as I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to realize that doing so is not that difficult. It doesn’t even require some kind of radical rethinking of your current thoughts, beliefs, or biases.
It all comes down to a simple approach.
That’s it. That’s really all you need to counter so much of the hate and mistrust that seems to infect our world at every turn. It may sound simplistic or cliched, but make no mistake. There’s real power in kindness. Most people understand that on some levels. But one man, in particular, dedicated his life to understanding it. You’ve probably heard of him. His name is Fred Rogers, better known to generations of kids as Mr. Rogers from “Mr. Rogers Neighborhood.”
Now, there’s a lot I could say about him and his message. There are no shortage of stories about him that are so heartwarming, they help renew your faith in humanity. But in the spirit of keeping things simple, I’ll just share this clip that I think best explains the true power of kindness.
Please take Mr. Rogers’ message of kindness to heart. In a world as divided as ours, a little kindness goes a long way.
Filed under Current Events, human nature, Jack Fisher's Insights
My (Genuine) Worries About Election Day 2022
It’s almost here, my fellow Americans.
Election Day is almost upon us.
As per the constitution, Election Day occurs on the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November. That means November 8, 2022, is a day every American should have marked on their calendar. Whatever you’re doing that day, please plan on voting, if you haven’t already. Make whatever accommodations you need, be it time off work or finding transportation. It’s not just an important responsibility, as an American. It may very well be necessary for the continued survival for this country, as we know it.
I know that sounds a little dire and hyperbolic. I also doubt I’m the first one you’ve seen make such a claim. Doom and gloom tends to come with every election. Every year, it seems, the election is framed as the most important election of our collective lifetime. I think I’ve heard that message in some form or another since I became old enough to vote. As a result, it’s hard to take seriously.
That being said, this year is different.
Yes, I know every year is different, by definition. But 2022 brings us a unique set of circumstances the likes of which this country has not encountered before.
This year, we’re not just voting for new candidates to represent us at multiple levels of government. We’re voting on the continued existence of real democracy, itself.
This time, it’s not hyperbole or a marketing gimmick. This a real, tangible issue that we can’t avoid.
That’s because this year, a sizable chunk of the American electorate will have to vote on a ballot in which at least one candidate still denies the validity of the 2020 election. That is not a trivial issue to overlook.
We’re not talking about radically different opinions on tax policy, budget allocations, or welfare programs.
We’re talking about people who believe an election is not valid if their side loses. That’s not a simple difference in opinion or political ideology. That’s an unequivocal denial of both democracy itself, as well as reality.
Now, I don’t want to get too heavy into the objectively absurd claims that a bunch of right-wing whiners have been making about the 2020 election. There’s are plenty of legitimate news outlets that counter those claims and provide clear evidence that the results of the 2020 election reflected the will of the American people. If you are someone who refuses to accept that for whatever reason, then I’m sorry. You’re no better than a creationist and a flat-Earther at this point.
But regardless of how provably wrong such claims are, plenty of candidates, mostly within the republican party, cling to this absurdity. What makes it even worse is that a non-insignificant part of the electorate believes it too. And they will vote for candidates who share those beliefs, no matter how wrong they are or how stupid, corrupt, or cruel the candidate is as an individual.
I’m convinced these people would vote for Satan, Lex Luthor, and the corpse of Ted Bundy if it simply told them they would vote in line with their regressive Christian Nationalist platform. And make no mistake, that platform is completely un-American with respect to democracy, human rights, freedom, liberty, and overall decency to your fellow human being.
These individuals, as well as the people who vote for them, may sincerely believe they’re right. They may truly believe that anyone less conservative than Pat Robertson eats babies, worships the devil, and wants to utterly destroy America. But those individuals cannot and should not be taken seriously in any society that seeks a healthy democracy. These people are in a dangerous death cult.
The cult leaders are exploiting them for money, power, and exploitation.
The cult followers are enabling them by actually voting for these sociopaths.
Now, here in 2022, they’ve so weakened democracy and so polarized the country that they’re within a handful of votes from holding real positions of power. And once sociopaths have power, they never give it up willingly. If enough of them do get elected, they won’t just further the agendas of election deniers and Christian Nationalists. They will make it so that it’s much harder to vote them out of office and it’s much easier for them to hold onto power, even when the vast majority of the American people don’t share their positions.
It’s already been happening due to voter suppression and gerrymandering. It’s no longer enough for the will of the people to be against them. The people actually have to vote in overwhelming numbers to at least hinder or slow these sociopath’s pursuit of power. But if that doesn’t happen this year, then expect it to get much worse in the years to come.
Power seeks more power.
The powerful will always pursue greater power.
It has played out in history many times within many societies. America is not immune to it. All it takes for democracy as we know it to end is for people to willingly elect those who undermine it. At that point, your vote truly doesn’t matter. And America, as we know it, changes into whatever these sociopaths desire, be it a Christian theocracy or a corporate-owned oligarchy.
I don’t want that for the country I love.
Most Americans don’t want that.
But the only way to stop it is to vote in such overwhelming numbers that these right-wing sociopaths never gain the power they seek. That’s not to say those on the other side of the spectrum are angels. They’re not. I’m not too fond of the democratic party in America, but at least the candidates on that side actually believe in empowering people to vote, rather than subverting it. And for America to continue, as a functioning free society, we need to retain that, as well as improvement. We certainly can’t expect those who deny the 2020 election and objective reality to do the same.
So please, my fellow Americans, do what you can to vote this year.
Do whatever it takes.
Because this year, it’s not just a choice between a republican or a democrat.
It’s a choice between someone who believes in democracy and someone who seeks to destroy it for their own selfish benefit.
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Filed under Current Events, politics
More Young Men Are (Unsurprisingly) Getting Vasectomies (And Why I’m Considering It Too)
Every now and then, you come across news that’s so unsurprising that it should hardly qualify as news. To report it is asking to reporting that the sun rose the other day. You don’t need reporters, scientists, witnesses, or researchers of any kind to affirm you. Anyone with semi-average intelligence could’ve inferred the same events.
So when the United States Supreme Court overruled Roe v. Wade and effectively ended the constitutional right to abortion access, most competent people could infer there would be consequences. You don’t strip half the population of a critical right that they’ve held for over 40 years without incurring some sort of reaction. While that reaction has played out in many ways since the ruling, I want to highlight one in particular. And it’s a story that I doubt will surprise anyone.
It has to do with men getting vasectomies. Because shortly after this ruling came down, there was a major uptick in men seeking vasectomies.
Many of these men were also quite young, some still being in their early 20s. Many didn’t even have any kids and were basically undergoing a procedure that would make it nearly impossible for them to do so.
Now, as a man and as someone who has a functioning news feed, I get it. This ruling was dramatic and far-reaching in so many ways. It’s enough to make anyone of any gender think twice about having kids. It has certainly given me pause. But I also think it’s worth putting this trend into perspective.
Yes, it will definitely impact women in a far greater way.
Yes, women will suffer much more as a result of this ruling.
That is beyond dispute. There’s nothing political about that statement. There have already been documented cases of just how much women are suffering because they cannot get an abortion. But for men, the concerns are still personal, albeit in a less direct way.
Now, depending on which state you live in, there’s a much greater cost to getting a woman pregnant, be it your girlfriend, your wife, or your mistress. Some of that can be measured in terms of dollars. If women are forced to carry that child to term, you’re paying for it one way or another. It might be in the form of child care, pre-natal care, or child support. Even without the emotional cost, you’ll still pay a high price.
Even if you’re happily married and actually want kids, you may still have to pay in other ways. If your wife can’t get an abortion and has a complicated pregnancy, then not only is she more likely to suffer greater, her life could very well be at risk. In the worst case scenario, she might end up dead because the state won’t allow her to terminate a pregnancy that’s doing irreparable damage to her body.
By nearly every measure, it’s a bad situation for everyone involved. A world where the state can force people to have kids they don’t want or deny them certain care that would alleviate their suffering is not a tenable situation.
For that reason, I don’t blame any man for seeking a vasectomy. Whether they just don’t want kids, they don’t want to put their partner in danger, or they just hate wearing condoms, it’s understandable. And there’s a high probability that this situation will get worse before it gets better. It may even never get better.
That’s because more than one conservative mouth piece has said that they’re going to go after contraception now that they’ve won the abortion battle. These reactionaries aren’t being subtle anymore.
They’ve made it clear that they want to turn the clock back.
They want to undo the sexual revolution.
They want to undo feminism.
They want to regress society back to a state where women were just breeding mares and men were just drones who only existed to work and sire more drones/mares.
While we can and should fight back against these right-wing fascists, I no longer have hope that we can win that fight. These people don’t play by the rules. They’ve proven time and again that they will lie, cheat, and bully their way to impose their agenda, even when it’s unpopular. And since too much of the population is stupid, gullible, and ignorant, they’ll go along with it in the name of trolling people they don’t like.
That is not a promising future, nor is it one I’m looking forward to. I do hope I’m wrong. But based on what I’ve seen these past few months, I am starting to accept that we’ve already crossed a point of no return.
I’m still relatively young. I currently am not married and I have no kids. Just a few years ago, I was fairly confident in what I wanted for my future. I wanted to find the love of my life. And I wanted to have kids of my own one day. But in wake of recent events, that sentiment has changed.
It’s not that I don’t want kids or oppose anyone else having them. I just feel like if I did have kids at this point, I would be bringing them into a world that’s going to get progressively worse for them. If I have a daughter, she’ll grow up in a world where the state will gladly make her suffer in the name of conservative values. And if I have a son, he’ll grow up in a world where many of the fun, freedoms, and joys that I had will have been taken away from him.
Again, I really hope I’m wrong. I really hope the current trends change in a major way. But I’m old enough to have noticed a recurring pattern in the global political landscape. Things will get worse because there are too many incentives for those who have or are seeking power.
For that reason, and a few others I prefer not to share, I’m seriously considering getting a vasectomy. I know it’s a big decision and one that would have a significant impact on my personal life, especially if and when I do meet that special someone. But given the current state of the world, it feels like the right decision for me and for whatever children might have been born in this increasingly distressing world.
That’s not to say I’m ready to make my appointment with my doctor. This is just something I’m seriously considering at the moment. And when I do ultimately make my decision, I want to be certain it’s the right one.
I also understand that I may have to make this decision sooner rather than later. Because if the courts are capable of banning abortion, then they’re just as capable of banning vasectomies.
Filed under Current Events, extremism, politics, sex in society, sexuality
I Paid Off My Entire Student Debt Years Ago, But I Gladly Support Student Debt Forgiveness
When I was in grade school, I got beaten up by a bully. It was painful, humiliating, and left lasting scars that I would not want anyone to experience.
When I was still in college, I tried to put together my first website that I hoped would help me make a few extra bucks on the side. I even paid for this service that was supposed to help get my site listed on major search engines at the time. That turned out to be a scam and I lost $150 at a time when I couldn’t afford to loes that kind of money. I don’t want anyone to experience that, either.
We all have experiences in our lives that we don’t wish for others to experience. It’s a big reason why parents strive to create better lives for their children, especially if they themselves had a difficult upbringing. I’ve known people who had horribly abusive parents, but they made it a point to ensure their children got the love and kindness that she never got.
This is an objectively good and moral thing. It’s something most are inclined to celebrate and support. So, with all that in mind, why should forgiving student loan debt be any different?
It had been talked about and entertained a great deal during the 2020 Presidential Election. Some candidates even made it a central part of their platform. But earlier this week, it became official. President Biden announced that a sizable chunk of student loan debt for millions of Americans would be forgiven.
USA Today: ‘Debt and no degree’: Biden cancels as much as $20K in student loan debt: Recap
Now, I understand there are a lot of political machinations behind moves like this, none of which I’m smart enough to make sense of, let alone articulate. I also understand there are some real, logistical reasons as to why forgiving student loan debt is difficult and will likely incur a greater cost in the near and far future. I’m sure I’ll notice that cost personally at some point.
All that being said, I still strongly support this. I would even support more student loan debt forgiveness, especially for those who were hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic downturn it triggered. And I say that as someone who paid off every penny of his debt back in 2011.
I know that makes me a bit of an anomaly, especially when compared to my peers in my graduating class. I knew some people who had taken out as much as $100,000 in loans in order to go to college. It wasn’t because they were reckless or stupid. They just came from families who could not afford to save money for college without starving. They also didn’t qualify for grants or scholarships.
And for the record, many of these peers were not majoring in “useless degrees.” I didn’t know a single person majoring in gender studies, philosophy, or underwater basket weaving. Most majored in things like engineering, medicine, and computer science. They were smart people who had the skills to get quality jobs as soon as they graduated. But not all of them were able to find jobs and even those that did still had what amounted to a mortgage payment cutting into their salary every month.
This is not a tenable system.
It’s also not how other industrialized countries do higher education.
In general, sending young people to college is an investment in people. We, the tax paying public, understand that there’s social and economic value in educating people at a high level. It’s a critical component for a functioning, prosperous society. And we don’t do that society any favors by shackling them with a massive amount of debt that they can’t get rid of, even in bankruptcy.
Looking back on it, I probably could’ve moved forward in my life much faster if I didn’t graduate with the debt I had. Granted, my debt was considerably smaller than most, but it still ensured I had to live at home a number of years and couldn’t afford any major investments, be it retirement or a car. I can only imagine how much further it held back peers with far bigger debts.
On top of that, the cost of college has gotten considerably more expensive since I graduated. I even went back and checked the tuition from my old school. Even with in-state benefits, I would’ve paid more than twice the amount I paid for the same degree. And the job market after I graduated would be nowhere near what it was years ago.
Despite these circumstances, as well as the undeniable burdens that come with being shackled with so much debt, I still here a common complaint from those who oppose student loan debt forgiveness. It has similar themes, but it usually boils down to comments like this.
“You took out a big loan? Too bad! Get a job and pay it back, you lazy moochers!”
“I paid back all my debt years ago. Why should you get to avoid paying yours?”
“It’s not fair! I didn’t even get to go to college because I was too poor. Why should I pay for your degree?”
Now, first off, if you’ve ever said something like this out loud to another human being who is currently struggling to keep up with loan payments in a terrible job market still recovering from a pandemic, I have one thing to say to you.
Seriously, fuck all the way off.
Second, if your opposition boils down to all these young people getting an advantage you never got when you were that age, know that that’s a total bullshit reason. Even if you paid all your debts off by hard work and sacrifice, who are you to force millions of young people to do the same? Their situation is different. Times have changed a great deal since you were in college. They’ve changed a great deal in the past five years alone.
These aren’t all the self-entitled brats you hear Bill Maher and Tucker Carlson whining about every week. Those people do exist, but they’re an extreme minority who just happen to whine the loudest. Most of the millions of students who will benefit from this program are genuine, hard-working young people trying to build better lives. They just can’t do that when they’re shackled with this kind of debt.
To ignore their plight because you think it’s unfair to those who paid off their debts isn’t just a dick move. It makes no sense. Think back to those incidents I mentioned earlier about enduring a hardship that I wouldn’t wish on others. Dealing with student loans is a serious hardship. And even if you got out of it, why condemn others to suffer?
That’s akin to opposing polio vaccines, antibiotics, and lead free paint because you had to deal with the world before all these terrible things. So you want others to deal with it too. That’s not fair. That’s not just. That’s just you being a cruel, sadistic prick to millions of your fellow Americans.
Again, fuck you.
I don’t care that I paid off all my loans already. I don’t care that many young people will get to skip the hardships I endured when I was younger. If anything, I will gladly cheer on those who benefit from this act. You have an opportunity I never enjoyed. I sincerely hope to make the most of it.
Filed under Current Events, political correctness, politics
Thoughts, Feelings, And (Dire) Predictions For The Future Of Abortion (And Many Other Rights)
Let me start by saying I had a sinking feeling I would have to write about this a while back when Supreme Court Justice, Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away. I also want to make clear that I am very hesitant to give my opinions and feelings on topics like abortion and not just because I’m a man who will never know what it’s like to be pregnant.
However, I think this moment in history is worth talking about. It may very well mark a turning point for the United States and the western world in general with regard to abortion rights and human rights in general. And it’s a bad turning point, at that. That much, I am willing to say.
But there’s no getting around it anymore. Last week, the Supreme Court made it official. Roe vs. Wade is overturned and abortion is no longer a constitutionally protected right in America. It is hard to overstate what a big deal this is for women, men, and children of every age. I honestly don’t think I can put into words what a monumental shift this is.
That’s why I gave myself a few days to process it before writing about it or mentioning it in any meaningful capacity. Like many others, I certainly had a knee-jerk response when the news came down. Even though I wasn’t surprised, it still had an impact once it became official. And it’s hard to know where we’ll go from here.
Even with that extra time, I do find myself settling into a certain resignation to what this means for the near and immediate future. And it’s here where I want to share some of my sentiments.
First off, let me just start by saying my usual hope and optimism that I’ve discussed in the past is pretty much dead. I made an effort to cling to hope and some general idea that the good of humanity will overcome the bad. Well, now I’m willing to say it outright.
I was wrong.
I still believe there are good people in this world and they vastly outnumber the bad people. But the bad people are the ones with the money, power, and influence. They’re the ones who spent years working behind the scenes, exploiting the system, and lying when they had to in order to make this happen.
You can’t appeal to their humanity.
You can’t reason with them.
You can’t even call them out on their hypocrisy and expect that to change anything.
These politicians, judges, religious zealots, and advocates are as bad as they come. But that doesn’t matter. Don’t expect them to lose a wink of sleep over any outrage or suffering this decision causes. They knew what they were doing. They just didn’t care. And there’s nothing anyone can do to make them feel guilty about it.
Secondly, I also want to make clear that I have no more respect for religious convictions. Usually, when I talk about religion, I make it a point to say I respect the sincerely held beliefs of others. I even acknowledge I have religious people in my family.
Well, I still love and respect those people. But I have absolutely no respect for their religious convictions anymore.
More than anything else, this ruling has proven once and for all that religiously motivated morality is dangerous, detrimental, and regressive. It’s not a coincidence that those on the Supreme Court who made this ruling are devout Catholics, a sect of Christianity that has always been vehemently anti-abortion.
Never mind the fact that the Catholic Church has been behind some pretty horrific crimes.
Never mind the fact that the Catholic Church is run by celibate priests who will never need abortions.
This brand of religiously-motivated morality had driven the anti-abortion movement since the rise of the religious right. They claim they’re trying to save babies, but the end result is micromanaging and criminalizing female sexual behavior. If you need any proof of this, just look at how the anti-abortion crowd criticizes contraception.
It’s not hypocrisy.
It’s just a means to an end.
It’s also why this ruling is just a first step.
Make no mistake. This same court and these same politicians will go after birth control next. They’re not even trying to hide it anymore. They want an America where getting contraception is a crime, where any kind of pre-marital or extramarital sex is dangerous, and where women’s bodies can be controlled and managed by the state. Abortion and contraception are just obstacles and they’re going to keep attacking.
And lastly, here’s the final point I want to make.
These assholes are going to succeed.
I sincerely hope this post ages poorly, but give it another four years. I promise you that contraception is going to be the next thing on the chopping block. It won’t happen all at once, but it will happen. These people, who have ample access to oil money, religious organizations that don’t pay taxes, and a voting bloc that will never vote for another party, will keep pushing and they will push non-stop.
I’m sorry if that sounds dire or pessimistic, but this is where my broken spirit is right now. My faith in the future and in humanity’s ability to come together was already hit hard by COVID-19. Now, this is the final nail in the coffin.
It’s over now.
Evil didn’t win. Lying, cheating, power-hungry assholes won. And honestly, that’s worse.
Now, that they’re emboldened, they’re going to go after more rights. Losing a right like abortion and contraception access is just the beginning. It won’t be long before things like same-sex marriage, porn access, and voting rights are targeted. Yes, people will protest and voice their outrage. But that’s not going to change anything.
And here’s here where I’m going to make a few predictions. Granted, they’re very dire predictions and I hope I’m wrong about all of them. But having seen so many distressing trends in my adult life as an American, I think I’ve gotten a good feel for how our politics trend. So, this is what I expect to happen.
For the weeks and months after the ruling, there will be outrage and protests. It will garner quite a bit of media coverage. Abortion rights advocates will vehemently and passionately attempt to rally support.
But it won’t change a damn thing.
That’s because the people who make these laws and enforce them aren’t going to change their minds on anything unless it directly benefits them. Remember, they’re assholes. The most protests can do is mildly inconvenience them. Sure, you can try and commit to vote the anti-abortion people out of office, but because of gerrymandering and voter suppression laws, that’s not going to do much.
One way or another, these same politicians that fought to end abortion rights will keep winning elections. It’s not a matter of getting out the vote. It’s just a matter of them gaming the flaws in our election system to gain power and stay in power.
And don’t bother threatening them either. That’ll just get you arrested and allow them to paint your side as the violent radicals.
That’s no just me making an anti-violence disclaimer. Violence of any kind really won’t change anything with this issue either. The government has the soldiers, the guns, the military, and the drones. No matter how dedicated you are to fighting for abortion rights, anything you do to any authority figure will only mild inconvenience them and give them a perfect reason to put you in jail or worse.
With or without violence, the result will be the same. People will get bored of meaningless protesting and move on. Some other crazy news story will happen to draw everyone’s attention away from this issue, be it a celebrity scandal or some other political upheaval. And once the protests stop, it’s back to politics as usual.
By that, I mean that when November comes around, the republicans will win big because the democrats didn’t solve all the problems in America for the brief two years they had power. And once republicans get back into power, they will do anything and everything to ensure they can’t lose it ever again.
That means more restrictive voting laws and more efforts to ensure that their opponents can’t do anything to help anyone, ensuring they can paint them as ineffective in the next election.
Eventually, whether it’s in 2024 or 2028, there will be a situation where republicans control Congress, the White House, and the Supreme Court. When that happens, expect their control to be complete.
They won’t just take control. They’ll ensure that they never lose it again. That means they’ll be able to pass any law they want to end abortion access nationwide, ban all the books they don’t like, and make sure that everyone strives to live a life taken right out of a bland, boring 50s sitcom.
It’ll be a boring, repressive future in which women, minorities, and the LGBTQ+ community suffer horribly. But that’s where we’re heading. Baring a massive upheaval or an alien invasion, I don’t see this changing.
Again, I hope I’m wrong about all this. But this ruling has pretty much ended my remaining optimism for the future of America, the world, and human rights in general. This was just the first step towards a much larger regression. I wish I could say it’s going to get worse before it gets better.
But honestly, I don’t see that happening. Last week was a bad week, but make no mistake. The worst is yet to come.
Filed under abortion, Current Events, politics, religion