I’ve got an image to insert into your mind’s eye. I have a sister. She’s two months shy of two years younger than I am. We’ve never really gotten along, although I can say that when I was in my darkest hour, she was there for me. When we were very young, my parents tried disciplining us the same way. Didn’t work. When I was naughty, my dad would spank me, usually with his belt. He didn’t have to hit me more than once or twice, and he didn’t have to hit me hard to get the point across. One or two swats, and I was on the path to atonement and redemption. But with my sister, he coulda beat her lily white ass red as a beet, and she’d just stand there, and take it, looking all the while like she was ready to go all Carrie on everybody. Kinda scary really. Eventually, they found that sticking her nose in the corner and forcing her into a time out was a much better punishment. She’d crack like a farm-fresh, Grade-A egg, inside of a couple of minutes. (For me, the nose-in-the-corner trick was not too different from locking me in my room – an opportunity to daydream and do some serious fantasizing.)
But the interesting part of all this was what happened after the punishment was over.
Me? I’d apologize. Profusely. Get a hug, and go on about my childhood. Not my sis. Noooooo. She’d go into her room, get on one of those rocking horses suspended from a metal frame with four heavy-duty springs, and ride as if she were one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse. There were photos, with her nostrils flared almost as large as the horse’s, red-faced, eyes full of the devil. Angry? Doesn’t begin to describe it. If you look up “Hell hath no fury” in an unabridged book of quotations, you’ll likely see a similar face.
The point of my bringing up the charming little slice o’ childhood is that this is much like what we’re in the midst of now. Stay with me here.
For eight years of W, we had a sitcom dad for President – well meaning, but slightly befuddled, trying to do the right thing, but just didn’t quite know how to get the job done. And the kids (the public) were constantly pushing the limits to see what they could get away with. Then we had eight years of Obama. Mr. Mom Jeans was like the parent who can’t say “No!” and wants to buy affection by giving the kids everything they want, sometimes even before they want it.
Then there was Trump. Dad, coming home from work, short-tempered, with law-and-order, disciplinary attitude that was a rude awakening for the kids. Not only did Dad say “NO!” But he meant it. He actually told We the People to straighten up, fly right, and take personal responsibility for our behavior. The Horror! The kids didn’t like it – at first – but like most kids, We the People howled in protest, and then most of us got in line. Life got better. We got better. But there was always that bunch, like my sister, over there riding the horse to oblivion, thinking, “Just you wait, Donald J., Just you wait!”
We all know how the election shook out. No need to hash that through again. But who did we end up with? Uncle Joe, the slightly creepy uncle who the angry kids love, because he can’t say “No!” at all. Ever. Period. End of story. Holy crap! The angry kids are now free to roam the country, having the Mother of all Temper Tantrums. And there’s no adults in the room to tell them to go to bed without supper. Bummer.
But here’s the thing. The rest of the kids – the ones who kinda liked limits, and the increased freedoms that went along with the strict parent are standing around, looking at the angry kids going, “What in the Sam Hill is going on?” or “When does this stop?”
So I ask you, is this the Beginning of the End (of our Republic) or is this the End of the Beginning (of this Socialist crap they’re pushing on us)? It could go either way. We could see the angry kids take over, and we’ll end up in a road show revival of The Lord of the Flies. Or…we could see the non-angry kids say, “Okay, we gave you a chance to show us the glories of the Socialist way, and it sucks. You guys shut the Hell up, and we put adults back in charge.
It could go either way. Personally, I think the angry kids – the Leftists – don’t have the word “restraint” as a part of their DNA. I think they are going to gleefully push us over the edge as quickly, noisily, and smugly as possible. Except…I think this is going to empower the other kids (the Right, the Centrists, the Libertarians, et al) and they are going to send the angry kids packing, off to detention, military school, or Club Gitmo. I hope that by overplaying their hand (in such a high-handed manner) they will lose everything in 2022 in the mid-terms – control of both the House and the Senate. Then we’ll have either two years of stalemate until the 2024 Presidential election, or Congress will have the will to set things right, and repeal the Socialist agendas of Uncle Joe and his crazy running mate, Auntie Kamala.
Beginnings. Endings. They look a lot alike. Just depends on your perspective, and which side of the door you’re on. Me? I hope this tantrum by the angry kids gets nipped in the bud, and they get spankings and put in a permanent time out. It’s about time.