IN HOPE’S WAY
The Chicago Cubs won the World’s Series after going without that crown for 0ne-hundred and eight years. Fans came and went, lived and died, and waited more than patiently for their hopes to be realized. And then it happened. The recent political election for president was also all about hope, although it was not portrayed that way by the national mass media. Every time the current president-elect spoke in a debate, he mentioned the loss of jobs by American’s to immigrants and to companies setting up factories abroad. His comments about these vital affairs soon dribbled away to attacks and defenses of other things that were personal and mostly ridiculous, but his campaign consistently refocused on the first part of his speeches, hoping America had heard it and would vote accordingly. And they had, and they believed, and they did vote accordingly. Bernie Sanders delivered the same message, but a bit differently, and his popularity, if it had not come so late in the campaign, might have won him the slot opposing Trump. Two candidates who were first and foremost about the huge loss of jobs, and the shrinking middle class, being experienced in all parts of the country.
Life is about tomorrow. Today gets lived through. Yesterday gets appreciated, used, avoided and lied about. Life is about tomorrow, and another word that can be used for tomorrow, when it comes to human motivation, is hope. Everyone gets up every day with hope. If that isn’t the case for some, then the suicide rate goes up. Even inmates on death row get up with hope because inside, as well as out in the regular world, the one decision that can’t be taken permanently from a human being is the willingness to go on.
Tomorrow’s hope is all about a positive result. That result does not have to be understandable or acceptable to anyone else around the person moving into the future. But it does have to be there. Humans were built to act, as well as react. We have come to understand that the other animal life forms around us, whether pets, or animals in zoos, or the in the wild, only react, or if they do act it is out of the results of what we humans call thought, then they only do so after long periods of exposure to the humans around them.
Trump is the choice of America when it comes to the results of the electoral process put into effect years ago to properly govern this country’s society. He has won because of hope. More rural than urban, and much more Caucasian than other racial groups. Trump won by convincing a good bit of the voting public that his presidency would increase their chances of getting a job, or a better job, or even a better paying job than they currently have. He gave them hope. Were there more complexities going on with that election than such simplicity explains? Yes, there were, but there is also no getting over the fact that Trump promised to stop outsourcing jobs and manufacturing, immigration and offshore accounts. He did not have to deliver on any promise, or even offer proof that he had a way to do any of that in order to win. Because elections are about hope. Track records, truth, storytelling, likability and even looks play a role, but it is hope that leads a voter to the election booth and guides their selection.
It might be said that all humans are in some way suicidal simply because living as a human being among other humans requires co-existence in a social tribal order. Acceptance in that order has everything to do with psychological and physical survival. It might also be said that all cultures are suicidal in different ways. They war with one another, even to the death, in many circumstances.
Donald Trump is to be handed the nuclear codes on his first day in office. There is nothing to stop him from punching in a location and then activating a code to launch a nuclear weapon at any place on the planet. Nothing to stop him, period. No law, no committee, and no intervening secretary or Secret Service agent. This sacred trust is one, since WWII, that only the president has. It is not shared. What this election proves, is that much of the population is willing to gamble it all, even with the possible expectation that nuclear holocaust might be an alternative. Somehow, the nation lost hope in existent traditional leadership, and turned to an awakening hope. Now, the die is cast, the dice thrown and the ball is in the air. Will this president be able to live up to America’s hope for a new brighter tomorrow, or will the present descend into carnage, becoming a past no replacement species might be willing to imitate, if such history were to be known?
~ James Strauss