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Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

To Sympathize or Not?

Everybody is talking about this article by Frank Rich but I think it’s dumb:

But for those of us who want to bring down the curtain on the Trump era as quickly as possible, this pandering to his voters raises a more immediate and practical concern: Is it a worthwhile political tactic that will actually help reverse Republican rule? Or is it another counterproductive detour into liberal guilt, self-flagellation, and political correctness of the sort that helped blind Democrats to the gravity of the Trump threat in the first place?

What is the alternative here, seriously? To keep repeating, like dumb donkeys, that “we only lost by a few thousand votes” when both houses of Congress and most of the states have been going steadily Republican for years? 

Yeah, totally, let’s not pander or self-flagellate. Let’s hope that everybody who doesn’t see the beauty of Democratic worship of consumerism at any cost just dies out and we’ll all joyfully embrace the wonders of consumerism together. Sounds like a great plan.

I don’t want self-flagellation. I want change. I want the party of Democrats to stop, think, and change course. Last week, I finally applied for US citizenship. I have decided that the only way I will vote for Democrats is if they recognize that the opioid epidemic and the creation of an enormous army of “surplus people” are two great tragedies of this country at this time in history rather than a matter of consumerist personal choice. 

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2 thoughts on “To Sympathize or Not?

  1. Shakti on said:

    I notice a lot of these political analyses want to focus on “WWC” or “hillbillies” which is a perfect way for the writers to avoid culpability for the current state of affairs. It doesn’t seem to matter if it’s Democrats or Republicans. It’s never “us” it’s always “those people” — whether it’s “immigrants” or ” white working class” or “minorities.”

    I got bored looking at the title and the first paragraph. Honestly, any discussion of “empathy” or “sympathy” or “regret” just annoys me to no end, even if I might agree. I just take it as an exhortation to do emotional work or any political work by people who just aren’t interested in it themselves and want to foist it off on someone else. “You need to feel this. You need to ‘understand’ that. Or you’ve failed the cause/coalition/whatever.”

    I am allergic. I hear about some hate crimes every two days, and I am DONE. I tried to get my mother to go to her town hall meeting since she wants to fill my ears with news. “I’m not going. I’m just voting. ” “Why?” “Not with this face.” This is for a Democrat and she’s afraid. I’m going to vote for who I need to vote for and call on stuff I care about. If people who are not me, or people I care about happen to benefit, fine. But anyone going on about an emotional prescription is going to be cussed out.

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  2. adrianaurelien on said:

    Democrats in Ohio are already there for the most part. I’d vote for them even if they weren’t, just for the sake of getting idiots like John Becker out of office, but it’s nice that they have their priorities in order. Every politician with statewide appeal knows that jobs and heroin are Ohio’s biggest issues.

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