Congrats, everybody who’ll be bitching in diners to NYT reporters in six months or eight months or a year about how everything sucks for you.
Congrats, because you voted for it.
You voted to gut your public school’s budget, because teachers have too many benefits and only work nine months out of the year anyway. Okay.
You voted to increase taxes on student loans, because if people can’t afford college they shouldn’t go, or should get jobs, or should study something useful like engineering and not dumb philosophy and basketweaving. Okay.
You voted to help kill Obamacare, because it was too expensive or bad or dumb, and you think being on your own, uninsurable and uninsured, is better. Okay.
You voted to repeal state and local property tax deductions. You voted to grant personhood rights beginning at conception. You voted to let churches openly politick. Okay.
In six months or eight months or a year, here’s what your world will look like.
Your public school will still be a shithole, your teachers will be on strike, your town’s test scores will be cratering.
Your property taxes — the taxes you bitch about like it’s your job — will skyrocket, and you can’t deduct them unless you’re living in a half-million-dollar crib in a prime community.
You won’t be able to sell your house, though, because the schools will suck, and school scores and property tax rates are all that matter in real estate.
Your pastor or priest will be telling you who he or she likes in the next election. If you want to remain a member in good standing, here’s who you’ll like, too.
The last insurance company serving your community will pull out because there aren’t enough customers. That’s okay, you can go on Medicare! Except you can’t, because that program had to be gutted to make up for the shortfalls caused by the tax cuts.
That’s what you voted for.
You voted against the very benefits that made your life possible, that kept your family in their homes and jobs and lives, that sent you to school each day and put food on your table. You voted against the social contract that says we all need help sometime, and we all deserve second chances, and we all should take care of one another.
You did it out of ignorance or spite, out of selfishness or fear, out of racism or stupidity or greed or just plain meanness, but you did it to yourselves.
You know why we don’t rebuild our cities with our steel and our fuel and our workers? You know why our schools aren’t the best in the nation, shining beacons of education? You know why we don’t go to the moon anymore, why we don’t take care of each other, why we don’t succeed? You know why America isn’t fucking great anymore?
Because the Republican congressmen and senators you voted for, over and over, out of ignorance and spite and selfishness and fear and racism and stupidity and greed and just plain meanness don’t want to make it great. They want to profit. And they know you either don’t know that, or don’t care.
So when you look around the wreckage, as you try to figure out what happened to the society you once lived in, make sure one of your lingering glances is toward a mirror.