what it is ain’t exactly clear…

In hindsight, I probably shouldn’t have started on that recap immediately after watching the debate. I’m so riled up I sound like Cameron Diaz on Oprah (“If you think rape should be legal? Then don’t vote!”)

But I know you feel the same way I do, as the comments threads around here have been filled with facts and debate. If you haven’t read any of them, please take a moment and see what other people are passionate about. Everybody has something at risk in this next election, and people are really getting anxious.

I am at the point where I wish someone would call both of these candidates on their weaknesses and make them answer for them. Really make them answer for them, with answers, instead of, “Well, do you know what he did?” I’d like someone to make a real point about this election who isn’t Jon Stewart or Tina Fey. It’s insane that the most logical-sounding people in all of this are the satirists who aren’t afraid to make a few enemies. You believe marriage should be between a man and a woman? Great. But tell me why. The tax cuts won’t work? Fine. Tell me why. You have a plan? What the hell is it? Just tell me. I’m so much smarter than you think I am. I can see why people start thinking Bush is the better man. At least he seems like us these days, hemming and hawing, feeling inconvenienced by this whole election when he was in the middle of working. Stopping to be held accountable. He’s treating this like how I treated staff meetings at IBM. “I’d be getting a whole lot more done if y’all would quit buggin’ me.” I get that. But he’s also acting like I did when I was failing a class when a progress report came out. I’m all irritated. “I know I’m failing. I don’t need you to remind me. I saw my grade on that paper. I’m the one who took that test, not you. What are you gonna do? Ground me? I already feel bad enough as it is. I’m working on it.”

So the rest of us are trying to assign morals and ethics and human behavior to the candidates because they give us nothing. It creates a good vs. evil situation where we have to LOVE-LOVE-LOVE one of the candidates and HATE-HATE-HATE the other because otherwise we look undecided and therefore, stupid. But they have flaws, obviously, because they are human. But when Kerry brings up Cheney’s daughter as an example of someone who is a lesbian, he’s got to finish the thought. He can’t just leave the word “lesbian” out there, like that was his intention, to say the word. He’s got to finish the job: “And it is sad that the Bush administration either hates Cheney’s daughter, or they are complete hypocrites when it comes to her rights.” Say it! Don’t just leave it at “lesbian.” And if you think Kerry’s a big pussy for not losing a limb in Vietnam, say it! And if you think the Vietnam records are important in this election because Iraq is dividing our country in such a way that every time I watch the news I think I should hear Buffalo Springfield in the background (“There’s something happening here…”), then SAY IT. Why can’t Kerry just shoot back, “A man who believes there is more than one Internet cannot be president”? And why can’t Bush just say, “There is no ‘You break it, you fix it’ policy at any retail store in the world. Don’t try and be ‘of the people’ if you’ve never been inside a mall.” They are so busy thinking about themselves they have no time to listen to each other.

I guess that’s why there are so many undecided voters. They’re hoping for a miracle, that someone will talk to them like normal people, but there’s no room for humanity in a race like this. That’s why people were so floored when Bush and Kerry talked about their moms and wives. “Oh, wow. He’s like, a real guy. With a family.” Don’t think that shit wasn’t scripted to the letter, either.

I think I’m approaching political burn-out. And I know it’s dangerous to feel this way. But I get so riled up about it all that at a certain point I just need to back off or I go crazy. Okay, new deal. Tomorrow, I’ll take the day off from fretting about the state of the world. I’ll rest my weary head on Sunday, where I’ll go to a birthday party and then go to rehearsal, where Liz gets to say my favorite line we wrote for our show Letters Never Sent (which we’re doing again to audition for the Aspen Comedy Festival, one night only, November 11, at the Stages theatre on McCadden):

“Dear Y2K: Who knew you’d come in the form of a President?”