Monday, November 03, 2008

True Signs of a Nation Healed

On the eve of Election Day, trust Steve Almond to see the bigger picture. In "Republicans I Have Loved" -- subtitled "They were moral. I was flexible." -- he remembers those golden days before absolute political clarity -- i.e., before Bush v. Gore -- when liberals and conservatives could unite, however briefly, to find love together.

I remember it well. It was a time when political differences seemed smaller, disagreements less iron-clad, recriminations less politically hurtful. Only your future together was doomed by your failure to see eye-to-eye (rather than chest-to-chest or thigh-to-thigh), not the future of the country itself. Gas cost 89 cents a gallon, credit was cheap and plentiful, and college dropouts could net dot-com jobs that paid for apartments in SoHo or SoMa. Truly, it was a paradise. Not least because of the interfaith intercourse.

We will know that Barack Obama has finally put the animating evil of bitter partisanship to rest when once again, young people of all political persuasions and cultural backgrounds can unite for trysts that are forbidden only by God's law and their own better judgment, not irreversible and implacable disagreements about the fundamental source of evil in our political universe.

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