Today, the gray skies exactly match my mood. For a liberal and a progressive, yesterday’s elections brought little to cheer about. Come January, the U.S. Senate will be controlled by Republicans, and Republican governors were re-elected in far too many states, including Maine. I was so hoping that Mike Michaud, the Democratic candidate, would win. While Michaud is neither as progressive nor as liberal as I would like, he certainly beats the alternative, and one of his campaign platforms was to increase funding for alternative energy.
Instead, we got Paul LePage, who, among other things, seems to be a real fossil-fuel enthusiast. If Maine were an oil-producing state, I expect LePage’s mantra would be drill, baby, drill.
The really depressing thing is that 47.9 percent of the state voted for LePage. In my own town of Winthrop, a majority voted for him. I’m not sure whether I feel as though I live among a group of aliens who have been hoodwinked by our bully of a governor, or if I am the alien who has been dropped in. Either way, it is not a good feeling.
You would think that at fifty-seven, I would be used to these upsets. After all, they happen with depressing regularity. A friend even called to tell me that the last three presidents who were in office two terms had the same thing happen to them in their sixth year. But somehow I never get used to it, and I have to let the despair burn through me like a fever.
In a day or two, I’ll regain my equilibrium. I’ll be thinking of ways to be part of the solution to the terrible problems the world is facing. Because I am not a political animal, it will probably be through reading, writing, lifestyle, and community involvement. Perhaps these things aren’t as effective as political involvement, but it’s just not in my nature to become a gung-ho political activist. I see too many things wrong with the Democrats to be that kind of ardent supporter.
This afternoon, I’m going to make chocolate chip cookies to sweeten this bitter day. Tomorrow, Clif will bring most of them to work—Megan, I haven’t forgotten you—and we’ll keep a few to munch on. Tonight, Clif and I will watch something light and fun—no dystopian movie for us.
Onward if not upward! And by gum, the sun even seems to be coming out.