Yes, a boxing referee may have helped the first presidential debate. The insults weren’t just entertainment. The personalities represented a more intense reality; that a young nation, is still desperately trying to forge an identity.
Either President Donald Trump or Joe Biden will sill stand the winner, not only of the United States, but as the symbol of a new America. They won’t be the last of the candidates to spar with as much at stake, but they will be the most important. We are in a second wave of inner political tumult in American history since our founding. The Civil War was the culmination of the first bout between the industrialists and the agrarians. Reconstruction being the catalyst for the Ku Klux Klan and other similar organizations. One hundred years after the Civil War, or, The War of The Rebellion, another counterculture movement was ending. The 1960s saw the defeat of the Agrarians, again, with the Second Reconstruction, and all of its Civil Rights Movement inspired legislation disappointing the traditional portion of the country again. It would establish Ronald Reagan’s Conservative version of politics, ironically birthed in the early 1970s while he governed California. Conservatism, now defined, was the antithesis of the Liberal faction of Americans, established through college campuses, urban areas and maneuvering through Black churches.
Fifty years later, little had changed, except the faces of the nation. Immigration, the effects of segregation (still mirroring the statistics of the 1960s) and poverty, reached a tipping point during the terms of President Barack Obama. By 2016, Donald Trump emerged, stunning much of the world with his stunning upset. For the first time since Ronald Reagan, Conservative American, had won. They would be determined to reverse whatever had gone against their grain.
Red, White, Blue and Neutral. These are the four corners of the United States of America. It is a fight, unlike one we’ve seen for generations. As much as some would like to avoid the tense public or private confrontations, it is here. In the red corner sits Republicans, blue Democrats, in the neutral corner are independents, and the white corner represents those that uninterested in the political landscape. Regardless, of your corner, the intensity of the moment, has dragged all corners into the center of the ring. If you’re silent, you, have unwillingly taken a side, loud, then your allegiance is known, and you will be treated accordingly.
Beliefs are strong in a time underlined by a pandemic. Religion today is politics in action. Whatever the religious thoughts and foundations, they will be manifested in one of those colored corners. The color code is easily identifiable. The cities are blue, the rural area and towns are red, with suburbs checkered, depending on the region. The report of the President testing positive for COVID-19, only intensified the moment, with the country either praying or cursing the announcement.
There really is no clean, objective way to read the reality of the situation. We are a young nation, bent on going one way or another. Tickets for this ‘main event’ are available is certain states, with the finale coming on November 3rd. Progressive ideology has always been the winner, while tradition seems to emerge after a while. Which is why each corner is doing whatever it takes – one last time. Because no matter where you stand, where you live, who you are, if you get a ticket or not, we’re in the middle of the political arena, and we’ve never seen an event like this.