What the Hell Happened, Joe?

I dug this up from a year ago. Given today’s announcement of President Joe Biden’s run for a second term, I thought this commentary would be appropriate. I’ll have more to say about his decision soon enough.

Image by BarBus from Pixabay

The news doesn’t look good from down here, Joe. Can I call you Joe? The polls look bad. We were so optimistic eleven months ago. Now, they say you’ve lost contact with reality. That you said that inflation is just a nuisance, and it will be soon under control. That the courts are just messin’ with you about vaccine mandates and that it will just be a matter of time before they all come to their senses. All these people screaming about vaccine mandates are just looney tunes, and we shouldn’t worry about them. And what the hell happened with Build Back Better (who came up with that name?). The moderates and the progressives are making fools of you at our expense. What the hell happened, Joe?

Then, I’m reading about Kamala, you know your vice-president. She is either the most incompetent or just the most ignored Vice-President in the nation’s history (okay, so I’m exaggerating). You made a big deal about the first person of color, and then it looks like you threw her under the bus. WTH is happening there?

Every day, I click open a news website, and it just seems like there’s nothing but bad news coming out of Washington and New York and Florida and Texas and pretty much most of the Midwest, South, and the West. All I hear and read about is how you don’t have a consistent message. Honestly, I just want to listen to a message, any positive message. I don’t want to hear about 3 trillion or 1.5 trillion. I want to know about the specific programs and policies that are going to help everyday Americans. About how you’ve united your political party so you can get something done before you get thrown to the GOP wolves who are already circling your body, and you’re not even dead. Yet. They’re sitting back doing nothing but throwing hand grenades with the assistance of that maniac in Florida and Fox News and every GOP member of Congress, and you seem to not realize the seriousness of the next two elections, 2022 and 2024.

Image by Please Don’t sell My Artwork AS IS from Pixabay

Americans may not know their ass from their elbow about science and COVID and economic policy and inflation and that the GOP stands for Totalitarianism. Still, they know when someone ain’t shooting straight with them. They want reassurance that someone really cares about them and the issues that affect them. And the list is long: jobs with good pay and benefits, affordable housing, the price of gas (holy crap, what’s up with that), and making sure that we’re going to have Christmas gifts and food for the holidays. People are just trying to get their pre—COVID life back even if they are still doing their darndest to extend it by not getting vaccinated, hanging out without masks, and ignoring simple protocols. It doesn’t matter because, in the end, they will blame you because, well, they must blame someone in the White House. They say they want Leadership, Sanity, Calmness. Something that we didn’t get for four years from the maniac who was there before you.

Look, Joe, I can’t even imagine what life is like for you, and I’ve known you long enough to see that you do have a good heart, but a good heart is just not good enough these days. This country is splitting up. Breaking apart in all kinds of ways. We need some healing. We’re just trying to heal as a nation without getting jammed in the heart by the crazies out there. We need your help to unite us while at the same time protecting us and our democracy from millions of nut jobs out there.

I keep wondering what the hell happened to this country, and then I realize that as long as I’ve been alive, all seventy-three years, there have been nut cases out there, both right and left, who just can’t help themselves. That it’s always about them and screw the other person. My Way or the Highway kind of BS. I know from personal experience how easy it is to fall into that hole. We love to talk about how we are in this together and waving the flag and sacrifice and America the beautiful, but I know they don’t mean it. What they really mean is what’s good for them, and everyone else can eat dirt. Or is it cake?

Americans. If the GOP wins this year, you and we are screwed. I will never understand how a political party that has pledged allegiance to an idiot can win against a person who can think like a human being and dish out so much humanity. I just can never understand them. That political party is not the friend of People of Color, the working class, young people, or older Americans. They only want to screw us so they can help the rich. No debate about it.

Image by Tibor Janosi Mozes from Pixabay

But the Democrats have their own problems. Some of them are also out of touch and think that figuring out a way to allow most Americans to succeed with some help from our government is making them into a dependent group. I’m talking about you, Senator Manchin and Sinema. Look, I’m not looking for a handout. I’m just looking for some breathing room. An economic policy that doesn’t benefit just the rich. Talk about a dependent group. Dependent on a tax system that maintains them. Come on, we weren’t born yesterday.

Here’s my advice, Joe, talk to us every day. Go on national television and use your bully pulpit. Talk to the middle straight about what you’re doing to solve our problems. Press Conferences, Oval office speeches, one-on-one interviews, visit family homes, town halls in Des Moines and Bakersfield, not on CNN. Come on out and see us like you did on the campaign trail. Talk to us straight. We’re ready to listen. And bring Kamala along with you.

Author: Antonio Pedro Ruiz

Antonio Ruiz is an ex-junkie-alcoholic, former seminarian, one-time radio host-producer, past community organizer, continuing to be a media advocate, retired television reporter, ex-commission executive director, once a street vendor of jewelry and gloves, waitron (waiter to you), a former bartender who drank too much on the job, an ex-motorcycle courier who learned to ride a bike just for the job, ex-airport shuttle driver, former Entertainment news director-producer, the best time of my life, one-time live TV events red carpet producer-executive producer, ex-small business consultant, ex-youth media and journalism mentor, and now a college student who also has been married three times (thirds the charm), and just couldn't help living with two other women because well, that's part of my story.

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