There’s been little talk of politics and/or current events here at Daily Cup because I’m weary. I still read the news every day. I see the headlines and I have an opinion, but I’m weary.
John Edwards is on trial. I don’t care. That cad went off my radar after Elizabeth died.
Egypt disqualifies yet another presidential candidate. Is this what the activists fought so hard for in their Arab Spring? Oy.
The Secret Service Colombian prostitution scandal? Shame on the agents involved, but I don’t want to know the details. Please don’t provide them.
Social Security and Medicare are looking dicey come 2035? Well, that’s just depressing (but not inevitable – read Rick Ungar’s article).
Newt Gingrich is dropping out of the presidential race. I forgot he was still in it.
The Supreme Court’s opinion on Arizona’s immigration law, SB1070? Okay, I might pay close attention to that one. It’s an interesting case.
Madeleine McCann, the 4-year-old British girl who disappeared from a Portugal hotel room five years ago, might be living with her abductor. I can’t go there. I can’t.
The Wal-Mart Mexican bribery allegations? I don’t shop at Wal-Mart for all kinds of reasons. This is just one more.
People Magazine has decided that Beyoncé is the world’s most beautiful woman. Good for her. I was never in the running.
George Zimmerman? There’s a man I wish had never become a household name. I’m sure Trayvon Martin’s family would agree.
Metta World Peace was suspended for seven games after deliberately elbowing Oklahoma City’s James Harden, causing a concussion. Just stop. His name is Ron Artest, okay? And Chad Ochocinco is Chad Johnson. (I won’t go into Cassius Clay or Lew Alcindor, but the name change thing bugs me.)
I have a friend who no longer watches the news nor reads the paper. She listens to the radio, so she’s not completely unaware of what’s ‘trending’. (I hate that word, trending.) Mostly, she’s tired of how it all depresses her. It’s too easy to become overwhelmed with our utter inability to do anything about anything. I get that. It’s why I’m weary. We’ve got our own problems here in California, in Los Angeles, in Studio City, in the Neil household.
Some issues only get resolved because of their immediacy. Others are broken down, piece by piece, and handled on a micro scale because the macro is too much. In fact, is there any other way problems are solved? The other night, I attended the fundraising gala for our daughters’ school. I was sitting front and center, solely because my husband is the Board Chair, and watched as one couple at our table repeatedly ‘bid up’ various live auction items (ultimately, ‘winning’ several). It’s their way, because they are able and generous, of first, helping with immediate issues – the school needs money for improvements, both academic and physical – and second, contributing to one of the most important concerns facing this country – that of a child’s education. It struck me how futile it is to foam at the mouth over many big-ticket news stories I’m apt to do nothing about and how much more useful most of us could be simply filling the proverbial pot-hole in front of our house.
When a friend asked if I’d like to help with Dec My Room LA, an organization that decorates hospital rooms for children requiring long stays for medical care, my answer was “Why wouldn’t why?” It’s a no-brainer. When it comes to kids, whatever we can do to help, we should. There’s a blood drive up at school in a few weeks and my CMV negative blood goes to preemies. I can give. I can coach soccer. And as a writer, I can question why California is focusing on a bullet train instead of furthering attempts to fix our schools. I can encourage Angelenos to ask of our prospective mayoral candidates what ideas they have about taking apart the Los Angeles Unified School District and doing what’s best for the kids. That’s what I can do.
About mad cow disease, I can only wring my hands and become a vegan for a week (total lie). Twenty years after Rodney King, I can recall where I was and how stupid the riots were, but not much more. Let’s be honest – most news is dinner conversation and little else. That’s okay for most of us as long as we’re not ignoring the issues we can affect, even if it’s only putting in a request for those obnoxious speed bumps so that cars aren’t mowing down somebody’s child in the neighborhood.
On that note (sort of): now that Romney is the presumed candidate, let’s start asking him and President Obama more questions about the state of education in this country. Greater state and local responsibility must be in order. What can the Department of Education do to help?
Complete non sequitur: did you see “Veep” on HBO? Julia Louis-Dreyfus as the Vice President of the United States. Hilarious. Sundays at 10pm.
Life, Parenting, Politics