I am very happy to have the elections over. Although I am not especially enthused about the outcome – that really isn’t what I want to vent about here. Instead I want to lament about the entire notion of politics, because as a writer focused on health promotion I believe that the entire political machine is sick and spreading depression and ill-will at every turn.
With the exception of the health and food columns in my local New Haven Register (Dr. David Katz & Claire Criscuolo‘s columns are always enlightening), I avoid the paper like the plague. There are just so many negative stories – murder, corruption, greed. It literally makes me sick to my stomach. Perhaps I am just overly sensitive and naive, but I frequently cry when reading the paper, and I just don’t have place for that in my life.
Yet, for the past few months, even my avoidance of the newspaper has not been enough to get away from the political rhetoric. My mail has been flooded with hate filled postcards and fliers. And, while I’m watching feel-good TV shows like Glee and Modern Family, the attack ads are able to impart their negativity. Throughout the election period there has been nonstop mud-slinging about the different candidates. That such negativity is being reported is less of my issue than the fact that it exists in the first place. In short, the people we have to choose from to govern us are known crooks and criminals – not the cream of the crop in intellect or morals, but rather the few individuals in society who can raise enough capital to buy their place on a ticket. In Connecticut millions were spent on campaigns. It’s a disgusting waste no matter what political affiliation you belong to. When the biggest issues on peoples minds pertain to our sinking economy it is a total slap in the face to see these obscenely wealthy politicians throw their money around.
So, this morning I awoke feeling a sense of relief. Not because I am happy with the outcome of the elections, but simply because the blatant, hate spewing of campaigning has come to an end. I will embrace this brief period of peace as the calm before the storm. Those newly elected could very well start mucking with what has already been working for the economy and health care reform. But, I am hopeful that they will listen to the people they spent so much money to sway and make the right decisions. Because in the end, all this negativity and worry about our country’s future does no good for anyone’s health. Only through positivity can we cure the plague of politics.