Before I jump into the meat of what I want to say, I want to step back and look at why I’ve really slowed down my blogging. A few things have been going on. First, I’ve been really struggling with my mental health. It’s been with me my entire life. I’ve had some sort of depression or another. In the lead up to the 2016 election I was obsessed with politics and it was not healthy.
I was frustrated with our political candidates in 2016 as well. I didn’t like Clinton’s policies and I thought we needed a significant shift in our foreign policy and domestic policy. That we should use the next presidency to reduce military spending and strive to make significant changes in our healthcare policies and expand our basic rights. I believed we needed to codify this into law. I didn’t see Clinton doing that. So, I submitted a protest vote in 2016. I voted for Bernie. Now, I rationalized this a few ways. I gave money to the DNC, I voted for all the national Democrats aside from her. I also knew that my protest vote wouldn’t have a significant impact in Oregon. I was right. Clinton handily won Oregon, won the national popular vote, and I got to protest that we should have had a better candidate than Clinton.
However, with Trump’s election, things rapidly spiraled. I needed to step back from all of the chaos he was causing. I couldn’t handle the news. Instead, I ramped up my donations. I give to more established causes across more diverse set of political interested than I did before.
Then my health started to fall apart. In 2019 I learned that I’ve been struggling with significant allergies for years. The care I was receiving seemed to ramp up my health issues and just before everyone else was stuck in their houses for Covid I was stuck in the house because I would have anaphylaxis reactions. So, instead of protesting, I read and wrote book reviews on here and donated more.
I read White Rage and I believe that book does the best job at explaining the history of why we’re seeing these erosions of rights than ever before. So, given the dire circumstances, I did the only rational thing, voted for Biden, donated more money to more causes and focused on getting healthy.
My health is moving in a better direction, though I’m still deep in the forest and a long way from getting out of the woods.
I sent that protest vote in 2016, because I wanted a leader that could start structural change. Someone that was willing to buck convention to risk reelction by codifying more rights. We need more rights enshrined in federal law. We need democratic leaders that recognize the Republicans goal is power. Continual power for a white ethno-theocratic state. One that doesn’t allow for BIPOC or their allies. One that only allows Evangelical Christians.
Roe is most recent right to fall. it will not be the last. It didn’t start here. Our rights have been on a long decline since 2001 when the Supreme Court decided the election, even though recounts indicated Gore was likely going to win Florida. It continued with the Patriot Act and the continual erosion of the 4th amendment. Then we saw the continual erosion of voting rights, first with the Citizen’s united ruling and culminating with the elimination of the VRA. This caused the huge lines we’ve seen at all the most recent election. It’s why we see so much dark money sloshing around.
I know I have a lot of privilege in our democratic system. My goal during the next few years is to ramp up my donation and leverage my privilege to push the Democrats farther to the left to counter the extreme rightward pull of the Republicans. I will mostly do this during primaries when I vote, but then vote for the Dem candidate when it makes sense.
Our rights are going to continue to erode. Gay rights and contraceptive are next, then interracial marriage, then we’ll be an apartheid state again. That’s the goal. In the mean time, I hope to do more blogging, I will donate. I will do what I can.