Never in a million years did I think I’d become a fairly regular reader of that bastion of liberals and glorifier of a city I don’t even particularly like, the New York Times. Yet, here I am, reading it, without any shame or remorse.
I also never thought I’d categorize myself politically as a liberal. Such is the dramatic impact of the bizarre state of affairs in my country, especially when it comes to politics.
Sitting next to me, waiting to be filled out soon, is a mail-in ballot for the upcoming presidential election. This is the first time I will have ever used one. It’s worth noting, also, that there have not been too many elections in which I’ve voted at all. (There is a reason for that, but it’s a long story that I won’t tell here.) At this point, I’m thinking that I’ll fill out the ballot by voting for every single Democrat I can identify, I feel so strongly opposed to the Republican Party and anyone who identifies with it. Because to be a Republican today is to be a sycophant to the biggest and most dangerous phoney of our times, whether people want to admit it or not.
This morning when reading the NYT, I was particularly glad to see an opinion piece by Marilynne Robinson on the topic of the current state of the U.S. Robinson is perhaps the greatest Midwestern writer alive today, and certainly one of the best American writers, period. I have loved reading and learning from her books, and count the time when she spoke at a conference at my college as one of the best and most interesting events I’ve ever attended. Robinson is a deeply faithful person, a Christian, and a self-professed liberal. Go read her piece, which is typically thoughtful and thought-provoking, wise, and somehow ultimately uplifting.
Another piece in the NYT also caught my eye today, written by Timothy Egan, a regular columnist and another favorite author whose books I’ve enjoyed. He discusses the dangerous enabler that is our current vice president. One of Egan’s more scathing lines is that “He’s cleanup on the aisle of atrocities at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.” Egan argues that this guy is arguably more dangerous even than the president because he gives a faith-based gloss to everything the president does and says. I find a lot in Egan’s piece that resonates with my own assessment.