[If you get The LEFT Show Newsletter, you’ve already read this.]
Everyone has pet peeves, and I probably have more than most folks. One of my longest lasting peeves is the phrase “Now, More Than Ever!” It seems that we trot this little phrase out every election year, and scotch tape it onto every email, letter, phone call and speech.
For most of my life, it’s been a dramatic flourish, just a little piece of flotsam used to let folks know that we’re serious about whatever it is we’re talking about. The problem is, we’ve been using this phrase so long that it has lost its potency – even while the increasing stakes of every subsequent election make the previous year's issues seem trivial by comparison.
Yeah, sure, it’s lazy writing, but every year it proves to be truer than the last time we used it.
Let’s talk about Utah for a moment.
As mad as I still am that Kael Weston got hosed by the Utah Democratic Party establishment, I’m voting for Evan McMullin. Sure, he’s bad on almost every single issue I care about, but that’s political and theological. When you boil him down, he’s just another Republican, and not an evil POS who thinks that child labor laws are unconstitutional, that the peoples’ votes don’t count, and that Trump is a living Prophet reincarnated from Mormon scripture.
I’m voting BLUE on my ticket, not just because I’m a bleeding-heart lefty, but because I care about the Utah GOP’s supermajority in the legislature. I care about clean air, medical cannabis, protecting trans kids, renter’s rights, over development, public education and teacher pay, and on, and on, and on.
This election cycle has me angrier than I’ve been since we found out that the Bush Administration was torturing people and using security as an excuse to give in to base, inhumane behavior. The truth is, this year’s election is as important as they get.
Yes, inflation is high – ALL OVER THE WORLD.
Yes, gas prices are high – ALL OVER THE WORLD.
Yes, food costs are high – ALL OVER THE WORLD.
You know who has plans for that? Democrats.
You know who passed legislation to fix these issues? Democrats.
You know who doesn’t want LGBTQ+ kids to commit suicide? Democrats.
Republicans are busy attacking children, caring parents, women, minorities, migrants, and anyone else that dares challenge their oligarchical plans for this country.
Democrats, for all their general goofiness and risibility, actually have an agenda, and are working toward making a better tomorrow for us, our kids, our grandkids … Republicans, once you get past their whining about consequences for racism and hate and shit talk, have nothing to offer but (my second least favorite political phrase) More of the Same.
Most importantly, aside from WHO I’m voting for, is that I am voting. It is the absolute LEAST any American citizen can do to participate. So, get out there, plug your nose, and vote this week. There is too much on the line to let this one pass by without voting.
Do something. Go vote.
The World’s Greatest Comic Book Podcast is nearing our 500th episode. That is a lot of Sundays spent creating original content to edify and enrich our beloved listeners. One of the things that we’re proud of with the Comic Book Podcast is our unwavering commitment to civic engagement.
From our annual fundraising for needful families with Podcast Phil and The LEFT Show, to making a promise to VOTE. Wait, what? Yeah, it turns out that The World’s Greatest Comic Book Podcast has a bit of a liberal bent, but not for the obvious reasons.
Back in 1954, a conservative snake-oil salesman named Dr. Fredric Wertham published a a bullshit missive called “The Seduction of the Innocent” and campaigned to ban the sale of comics to kids because, he said, it made them – among other things - violent. Comic Books. Because of Wertham, organized comic book burnings were held, causing some stories to be lost forever.
It basically broke the Comic Book industry for decades.
It was censorship, pure and simple, and censorship is bad. These days, modern, right leaning snake-oil salesmen are trying to ban books. Some of those books are comics and graphic novels. They are mostly targeting books that include support for LGBTQ+ children. At risk kids that already feel ostracized and disenfranchised in a country that once claimed to support freedom and the right to pursue life, liberty, and happiness.
Censorship for the sake of sparing white feelings is a slippery slope, and frankly it’s one we do not wish to foster. We’re committed to fighting against censorship and one of the ways we do that is voting.
It sounds silly, to be sure, but it’s true. Keeping pearl-clutching book banners out of office is the only way to ensure that we, and the generations that follow us, have access to art, literature, education, and, yes, comic books.
Some of the most powerful stories are told in Comic Books. From Maus to V for Vendetta, sequential art storytelling has helped elevate the discourse about the rise of fascism, the threat of authoritarianism, and the dangers of right-wing censorship.
Your vote matters. Your voice matters.
Make a commitment to vote. It could honestly save democracy as we know it.
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Unless you live in a state (like Oregon) where the candidates are actually fucking fantastic versus evil.