Whenever the United States finds itself in a national election season, it also finds itself in an almost inescapably discombobulated shitshow. If given the chance to be renamed, the title “Discombobulated Shitshow 2016” could far too ironically describe the current state of repetitive political coverage our nation has found itself satiated upon.
The American public seeks out drama, seeks out tragedy, and seeks out stagnation. It attacks the two main political parties, pits them against one another without any feasible resolution, and then stands aghast at the atrocities that follow. Each side maintains their innocence and hypocritically accuses the other of the resulting stalemate that the government currently operates within. With the Democratic and Republican Parties arising as the two modern-day rhetorics with which the vast majority of American citizens align, the seemingly constant — and equally unneeded — clashing between the two parties continues to plague our nation with inefficiency. Both political parties condemn the other while simultaneously avoiding doing anything to improve the condition of the nation whatsoever. Politicians make groundless claims and yell unbearable gobbledygook at and about one another in order to gain attention and maintain notoriety, and the nation relishes in every second of the circus without truly understanding the consequences.
The media only augments the illogical behavior by attaching and spreading harmfully fictitious and otherwise irrelevant news throughout the nation. Like a disease, the falsities brought along by the media speedily transform the potential atmosphere of civil and beneficial debate upon national issues into a circus. As we have seen, and will continue to see until November, little is being done to combat this troublesome nature. Contrarily, attacks have become so idiotic that one has to question the legitimacy of even renowned news outlets.
Networks have been covering the election season for so long now that they have run out of new material by which to entice the American public. As Donald Trump feebly attempts to adopt a less concerning demeanor and speech pattern and Hillary Clinton attempts in an equally feeble manner to prove to the general public she is an average and relatable American citizen, attacks have shifted from legitimate critiques of policy and conduct to each candidate’s human existence.
A candidate from one’s opposing party sneezes incorrectly and they become a terrorist, coughs a little too loudly and is accused of being a reptilian creature — I encourage all readers to pursue that particular conspiracy — or maintains a wispy, cotton candy-esque perm and is viciously attacked as a result.
In the recent case of Hillary Clinton, she became overheated on a balmy New York afternoon and retreated to her daughter’s nearby condo to refresh. While the setting of the occasion — a service honoring the victims the September 11th attacks — was less than preferential to be seen exiting prematurely, Clinton nonetheless made no relevantly newsworthy departure.
In the news coverage of her exit, however, she was not only accused of being physically unfit to perform as a presidential candidate, but mentally inferior, psychologically unstable, and even carrying out a body-double conspiracy. Perhaps even more dismaying, the seriousness exuded from those reporting the incident as “news” forced many Americans to once again defend egregiously their either supporting or damning views of the entire Democratic Party.
Perhaps it is because Clinton is the first woman in her position, but that is not the entire foundation. Had Donald Trump been involved in a similar situation, undoubtedly an equal number of Americans would have been “outraged” and reacted similarly.
If one is surprised that any one of the many more relatable candidates did not receive either major party’s endorsement, one ought not look any further than the coverage of Clinton’s recent spat with pneumonia. Our nation has placed the literal caricatures of a political robot and a 1920s mobster rat atop the platforms of each party solely because of our hypocrisy.
Lest we forget, President Roosevelt piloted our nation through its finest and most difficult hour — World War II — while significantly debilitated from the effects of polio. Polio was incurable and promised a death sentence to the president, but he pressed forward, and united the nation using the power of humanity itself. President Kennedy, our youngest and seemingly healthiest president was diagnosed with Addison’s Disease and a thyroid disorder known as hypothyroidism prior to his election. Ronald Reagan, famed conservative president and communicator, had multiple cancer-related surgeries while in office, even briefly relinquishing his presidential power to then-Vice President George H. W. Bush due to the severity of one of the surgeries.
We marvel at the humanity seen in certain aspects of our presidential candidates’ personas. In fact, we choose our candidates strongly based upon their ability to connect with us common-folk. Yet simultaneously, we mock and assail them for exhibiting the very same humanity for which we previously begged. Clinton and Trump’s statuses as members of the upper societal echelon do not change their statuses as humans; it does not grant them special powers or the ability to avoid all sickness. We cannot pick and choose certain aspects of humanity within our presidential candidates. We must accept them in their entire and vulnerable natures. For as much as we wish they were perfect godlike beings, that simply is not the case.