Election Day Resolutions

    I am pleased to announce that I have reached my mental illness quota for 2020, and as I result I have decided to stop being anxious and depressed! Yeah, just like that. I’m cured. 

    My brain may think otherwise, and my feelings might continue to fluctuate, but I’m done falling apart over...everything.  It doesn’t serve me.  I have shit to do, places to be, and Hot Mess Land ain’t it. 

    I’m writing a book, raising boys, and living a life in my dream home in the country. I got the hang of thus activism thing and I found my role in the community. I take my meds, go to therapy, and work on my past trauma.  I’m on top of self-care. 

    I have multiple cats to hang out with and a long reading list. I need to do my Christmas shopping and plan 2021. Gardening projects and naps and hikes await me, new tattoos and meals and road trips. 

    To hell with meltdowns and setbacks!

    I’m almost 40, and while I still have lots to learn and overcome, I’m a grown-ass woman. And a strong woman at that—literally. I’m a tough Balkan chick with guns for biceps and the confidence of a rich, white American man. I lack the desire to waste another day in letting frivolous and meaningless crap slow me down, or prevent me from kicking butt. 

    That’s how I roll: mental illness or not, I do everything with gusto and I don’t apologize for it. 

    Suck it, dumpster fire of a world around me, and also people who are so involved in its paltry, superficial side effects they can’t see the big picture! 

    You tricked me into being scared for the future, and I spent most of this year feeling confused and sad and upset. And that’s not fun. 

    I know, life is hard. Reality bites. The world is hostile, blah-blah.  I can’t really control any of it, but if I’m going to be a part of it and affected by it, I’m going to choose how much, and in what way

    Here’s the deal: You do your worst, world, and I’ll hold myself together. I’ll have my fun, give it my all, and whatever happens, happens

    No more half-measures and minced words. Enough back and forth about semantics and distracting, negative noise. Literally ain’t nobody got time for that. So, watch out! 


Black lives matter. Period.

Reparations are due.

Abolish ICE and Columbus Day.

Justice, definition: Arresting, prosecuting, and sentencing the murderers of all BIPOC who died at the hands of the police and as a result of racially motivated crimes.

Speaking of which, we are defunding the police.  We are reforming it, and using the funds to ensure adequate and functioning social services.

Socialism is NOT a dirty word. Figure it out and embrace it if you like public roads, schools, parks, and staying alive in general.

We are banning the term “self-made man” and replacing it with “a prosperous individual who owes the success of their ambition and hard work to the existence of infrastructure provided by the government and paid for by taxes”.

In 2021, punishing people for being poor will be outlawed.

Ableism is a hate crime punishable by a fine and community service.

Affordable universal healthcare for ALL. Literally everyone. Every single body.

Affordable education for ALL. Literally everyone. Every single body.

Mental health and hygiene must be practiced rigorously.

Forget the future—the PRESENT is female.

Free the nipple?! I say free the entire titty!

Female sexuality exists, and so does armpit hair.

There’s no such thing as a "standard" body type or beauty .

Repeat after me: Fatphobia is DEAD.

The only thing that causes rape is rapists. There will be no further questions at this time.

Going forward, when we say “feminism”, we mean intersectional feminism by default.

All clothing items for women must have at least ONE pocket.

Free menstrual products and birth control.

6 months to a year PAID PARENTAL leave  (Dads are people, too!)

Error 404: Toxic Masculinity Not Found

No more gendered bathrooms. Divide them by zodiac sign, I don’t care.

We stop forcing women to have babies, effective immediately.

And start paying them equally.

Oh, by the way, trans women are women.

Trans rights are not up for discussion.

New construction amendment: just because you have the right to say anything doesn’t mean you should. You sound really stupid.

Keep your guns, no one wants them. We are simply going to make it impossible for unstable and dangerous individuals to buy military-grade automatic weapons at the local grocery store. 

Keep Church at least 6ft away from State.  Wear a mask, wash your hands.

Like breathing air? Same. Green new deal, like, yesterday. Fracking stops, it’s over for big oil and vroom culture.

Eat the rich. Multi-billionaires shouldn’t exist.

Neither should factory farming, animal testing, and corporate monopoly over PLANTS.

Labor rights and protections for undocumented agricultural workers.

No excuses for fast fashion. Materialism and consumerism are antonymous with happiness, and that’s not news.

Get on with the program: stay informed by drawing from legitimate sources. Social media ain’t it.

Opinions are NOT facts. Easy mistake, but try to avoid making it again.

Cut down the military budget, the last time I checked we are not at war? 

Additional American value to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness: empathy.

We’ve decided that daylight savings, the electoral college, and the two-party system are bullshit, and we are getting rid of them.

Voting rights for Puerto Rico.

Introducing: referendums, every vote counts, and political parties that reflect the diverse nuances and needs of the American people.

Decolonized history only, please. Thanks!

Public transport.  And trains! We love trains. Choo-choo! 

And for gosh sake’s. Close those bathroom stall gaps. 

    I went to protest a Trump rally in the village the other day.  In the VILLAGE!  The audacity... the humongous trucks... the tacky merch and the lack of masks... I saw actual children wearing MAGA hats and yelling "all lives matter"... But I had to go.  

    Of course we all have better things to do! Do you really think that I enjoyed standing at a street corner on a hot Sunday morning surrounded by hate and hostility, while people flipped me off and revved their engines?!  No.  It's not fun to obsessively check the news and social media every few minutes to see cities boarded up and read about fears that the election results would cause a full blown civil war? 

    I most certainly don’t dig this dystopian sense of being suspended in the air, and not being able to move because everything hangs in the balance of a system I have so little control over. I’m fatigued by months of tension, stress, and uncertainty, and I’m over-exerted from coping day to day for the past four years. At this point it seems like we are simultaneously over the entire thing, and still have so much work to do... Everyone is a mess, reeling from a specter of emotions and pushed to their limits, trying to navigate through the circumstances. 
    Everything is hilariously absurd but also starkly serious! And we all deal with it any way we can. 

    I’d rather be in Hawaii or visiting my folks in Bulgaria.  I wish I could send my kids to the mountain with the grandparents, smoke a joint, make love to my husband, take an hour-long bath and power nap, then walk around my beautiful village, and finish off with a dinner and a movie at home with my cats. There are literally a million other things I want to and could be doing, but tough luck. This is it.

    I didn’t ask for it.  I didn't ask for Black people to be killed by cops, or for women to be forced to have babies they don’t want. I didn’t agree to immigrants to be unlawfully separated from their children and put in camps. I didn’t support the rise of a blatant and shameless tyranny that openly instigates violence and calls on extremists militants to do its bidding. 

    I didn’t approve of an inadequate and politicized non-response to the global health crisis that caused hundreds of thousands Americans to die alone. I didn’t use religion to justify bigotry and homophobia, and I don’t ignore science when I make choices about the future of my children and our natural world. 

    I didn’t collude with corrupt foreign governments for my personal or corporate gain. I don’t lobby for the interests of weapon makers, or make deals with organizations who use the Constitution to further their agenda, while children are being murdered in their schools and practice active shooter drills as frequently as fire drills. 

    I don’t tell whom people should or shouldn’t love, sleep with, date, marry, or which bathroom to use. I don’t do anything to marginalize anyone who’s working poor, unhoused, differently-abled; I didn’t grab anyone by their genitalia, or call people names. 

    This and so much more that is wrong, unjust and unfair, and I didn’t contribute to any of it. 

    But it doesn’t matter, does it. I am capable enough to look around and face reality, and step outside of myself. I am responsible for doing my part even if I wasn’t the reason for this situation. 

    I came here ten years ago and I spent this time learning to drive, building a family and a home, learning to be a part of the society, and to contribute to my community. I didn’t know how bad it actually was, but once I understood the situation, I did everything in my power to improve it. 
    I became a citizen, voted, protested, paid taxes, used my voice and taught my kids to be better and stronger than this. 
    I don’t hate anyone, don’t look down on anyone. I have all the empathy for those who struggle, regardless of the misconceptions they harbor, or their opinions and political views. And I have the good will to utilize my privilege and my resources to be of service to a cause that will level the playing field for those who have been overlooked, wronged, and oppressed. 
    I could just as easily hide in my comfortable bubble and do nothing. It would save me a lot of trouble, and the world will keep on spinning without me. 
    I don’t know how much of a difference anything I say or do will make, and I don’t have the illusion that I’m in any way better than anyone else

This simply is not about me! 

    The only thing I can truly control here are not the consequences of my contribution, the influence of my words, or the scope of my power. It is the fact that I do have a choice, and I don’t feel like squandering it. I choose to act, and only time will tell how effective I will be one way or another.

    This entire country needs therapy

    I’m not even kidding you. America is mentally unwell. 

    Half of the states need to undergo thorough psychiatric evaluation to determine what’s causing their pathological empathy deficiency, and their inability for rational and critical thinking

    And the other half needs professional medical help to heal from their past trauma, caused by the accumulative effects of persisting and pervasive systemic injustice and inequality, and to cope with with their current issues: grief for loved ones, loss of livelihood and uncertainty about the future, Covid anxiety and lockdown fatigue, seasonal depression on top of doomsday scrolling leading to the election, frustration with distance learning, and the overall sense of being overwhelmed by *gestures broadly at everything*.

    As far as the very fact that half of America voted red despite all the evidence that this is detrimental and harmful, I’m neither surprised nor bothered.

    In the past four years we witnessed the right turn (mutate?) from fairly familiar and classic Republican to something out of a horror movie: an open and brazen dictatorship which used cult of personality, disinformation, and intimidation tactics to appeal to people who support and practice white supremacy, corruption, and violence. 

    It’s not just the rich and conservative people anymore—the boomers and the keepers of the obsolete, hollow post-war American Dream. It’s not just the patriots who voted for Bush, or the believers in the 2nd amendment. 
    It’s not just the big corporations, the working class of the South, and the poverty-stricken people from the Bible and Rust belts who feel left out and forgotten. 

    When it comes to politics, our circumstances determine our mindset. It was never unusual for a large number of Americans to clutch to a skewed sense of tradition given that the very foundations of this country were built by slave labor, and our democracy is rooted in the principle of privilege and consumerism. 

But now these political ideas are infected with something sinister and morbid. 

    Now, "conservative" is also religious extremism and fringe militia groups.
    It’s the climate and science deniers... It’s the conspiracy theorists and the xenophobic alt/far right. It’s the antiquated segregation-days racism, and the hysteria caused by fear of ill-understood socialism. 
    It’s the rise of misogynistic attitudes and toxic masculinity. It’s white fragility, and ignorance normalized by promoting the entitled idea that having an opinion is more important than the actual logic/significance of the opinion itself. 
    It’s the championing of intolerance and exclusivity as a moral value. It’s the misuse and abuse of power to deny opportunities, and strip away hard-earned human rights. 

    Now, voting red is voting for deliberate spreading and repetition of erroneous information for purposes of conveniently furthering the agendas of the powerful, even though it is against the interests of their own constituents. 
    It’s petty, undignified behavior for the sake of cheap entertainment, and it’s arguing for sport—name calling and finger pointing, mockery and insults that serve as a distraction. 

    It’s being okay with confrontation and polarization, and worse: it’s using social tension to drive the divide even deeper and to incite further conflict

    It’s the impediment of civilized progress, and restricting liberty by distorting the very definition of the term “freedom”. 

    It’s letting people die and not doing anything about it. 

Our contemporary right is criminally negligent and deliberately adverse and destructive. 

    It is nothing short of a sociopathic disorder: it’s narcissistic and self-centered, tone deaf and antisocial, and it lacks conscience
    And if, miraculously, the right is proven mentally fit, the only remaining explanation for its behavior is simply that it’s evil. 

    The world is not black and white, and people are not just good or evil; they are so many other, complicated things in between. But this ideology is pure evil. 
    Whenever I try to make sense of it, my hair hurts. It’s non-sequitur, absurd, impossible to validate or justify without leaving me feeling dirty and spoiled... 
    There will always be Republicans, conservatives, and yes, racists too, and all sorts of people with outrageously wild ideas/ideals. 

    But our current administration goes far beyond any comprehension of basic right and wrong; it feeds and nurtures a brand of extreme, malignant views and beliefs that are destroying our society

    After all is said and done, Trump’s politics are, in no uncertain terms, proving fatal. 

    Ever since the beginning of time, and even more so since 2016, America has been murdering its own people... Yes, I am aware how overly-simplistic and hyperbolic this sounds, but what do you call slavery, Jim Crow, segregation, and the treatment of Indigenous People?  And today, 233 thousand are dead in the pandemic. 
    Thousands of BIPOC killed by the very institution they have elected, and are paying taxes to for protection—on the streets, in their own homes as they sleep. 
    Millions of working poor, struggling to make ends meet, and the streets of the wealthiest and most cosmopolitan US cities are lined with the tents of the homeless. 
    Millions withering away in a prison system that’s better funded than the public school system.
    Difficult to access and navigate health care system, and the impossible to bear or shake burden of college debt.
    In a nation founded by immigrants and refugees, children are snatched away and put in cages because their parents dared to seek a better future here. Etc. etc. 

    Insanity and evil is when those responsible for our well-being not only act like they are okay with this, but also refuse to change direction

    And no, Trump didn’t create this either. 
    He is using the division and tension already created by past events and policies. He is not a smart man, but he’s clever enough to grab the opportunity by the genitalia and utilize the mood. 
    We knew this back in ‘16. Trump and his cohort are transparent and they don’t really hide it. It worked for them, and that’s on us. 

Trump's atrocities are well recorded. His intentions are clear and his incompetence is public knowledge.  And yet, he became the Leader of the Free World.   
    (Supposedly) it is not Christian to proudly parade as a twice divorced womanizer and philanderer, but he baited them by opposing gay marriage. Trump was allegedly a democrat once, but the Republicans were the only party stupid enough to actually endorse him. He is a failed businessman who comes from privilege and family wealth, but the “common man” identifies with him because he was also a reality show personality and his lack of education is populist. And large corporations support him because, money—Trump does not subscribe to the inconvenient truth about climate change. 

    The perfect storm of unfortunate events aligned so well for him, and he had his go at it. We are all worse for it as a result. The hypocrisy of building a wall while being married to an immigrant.  The irony of boasting anti-socialist ideas but colluding with Russia. His fictitious patriotism badly disguised as patriotism in stark contrast to his overly friendly meetings with foreign tyrants.... 
    It’s all there, documented and written, in plain sight. He didn’t invent racism or corruption, and he didn’t create our American nightmare.  It was in the making long before him.

    But he did make it so much uglier. It will take us decades of hard work before we start seeing any improvement... 

    This is our chance for a do-over. 

    The left underestimated the whole thing and missed so many opportunities to stop insanity and evil in its tracks. 

    We tsk-tsk-ed and shook our heads in disbelief, ignored it because it made us uncomfortable, and idled in our privileged bubbles for too long. 
    I repeat myself but looking down on the right because we think them dumb isn’t activism. 

    Our condescending reluctance to engage and be more vocal didn’t prevent any of the tragedies we witnessed in the past 4 years. Our sanctimonious attitude pissed the right off even more. It made them indignant, and it led to shouting matches and belligerent behavior that cost lives. 

    The right was emboldened by our refusal to take them seriously, and they showed us what they are capable of. They doubled up on their efforts to successfully spread hate and injustice as a reaction, and we ended up having to do damage control instead of working for real progress. 

    We have to counter all this ugliness now, on top of the pressing issues our society already has. 

    This new, extreme and dangerous right wing engaged us in a futile discourse about things we normally shouldn’t even question; there was so much gaslighting that we started questioning our own sanity instead. 

    We got caught defending ideas and legislations we believed to be universally accepted and true—today, the very integrity and soundness of the concept of democracy is in peril, and many of us can’t handle this. 

    For BIPOC, this isn’t a new challenge. 
    The injustice they face daily has given them a different perspective about whose interests are favored in this country. 
    But for the majority of white liberals it was a shock to step out from their echo chambers and gaze upon the real face of America, so strikingly illustrated by the anomalies of the far right. 
    They suspected that there’s something rotten in Denmark, but it didn’t affect them directly and they were okay with it. They didn’t realize the full extent of the issues of so many of their Black counterparts. And when a cartoon of a man got elected in 2016, they lost their minds. 

    Suddenly, they had to convince their weird uncles that racist jokes aren’t funny, and then cut them off because the uncles argued that calling them racist is an insult. They couldn’t recognize the America they thought they knew, because now their own rights and freedoms were at stake

    So here we are. We call each other “snowflakes” and “rednecks”. Some throw tantrums for having to wear a mask while others are “listening and learning”. 

    We are split right down the middle and this election is close by a hair. And everyone is so exhausted, frustrated, and overwhelmed that they are paralyzed. 

    It’s a new level of confusion, the kind that historically leads to the deepest collapses and conflicts. 

    It’s happened before, and it’s up to everyone how it will turn out tonight. 
    The good news is that a little over half of America is NOT entirely insane or evilThe bad news: we need to stop acting surprised, getting outraged, and ask "what the heck happened?!" when it comes to the other half of America, and get to work. 

    I’ll always be on the side of the less fortunate and those who were wronged. I’ll always stand for equality and justice. I’ll always be about love and against hate. 

    But I refuse to go crazy this time.

    I don’t want no part in the Election Madness. I don't intend to freak out or cry, get drunk, or lose sleep over it.  I lived through one national political and economic catastrophe back in Bulgaria, and that was plenty. 
    I’m out. Good luck and I’ll see you on the other side! 


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