Sunday, February 12, 2017

Everything's Political In Its Own Way

As we become increasingly polarized in the United States, even small acts like watching television have become political.

 The popular TV satirical show Saturday Night Live, on for over 40 years, now ratchets up its satires of the new Administration in our country.

Now, even the Super Bowl, which once was a championship football game eagerly awaited by fans, who partied and watched the game and commercials (and non-fans who partied and watched the commercials) has become political.

Here is a comprehensive list and links to some of these (and other) Super Bowl commercials.

If you don't have the time, here are a couple by themselves:

A commercial originally aired in 2014 by Coca-Cola was rerun, to much controversy.


Then, there was a commercial so controversial that the TV network showing the Super Bowl required an edited version.  The full version (above) is available on You Tube and runs a bit over five minutes.  Over 10 million views, and if you want to see the Internet in action, just read the reviews (or, perhaps, don't.)

February 12 used to be celebrated as the birthday of our 16th President, Abraham Lincoln. We haven't forgotten that Lincoln was President during a time when the United States was at war with itself.  Over 700,000 dead later, the states that seceded lost the war, and, today, we are a nation of 50 states.

Days after the war ended, Lincoln was assassinated by someone who sympathized with the rebels.

What we call the Civil War, others The War Between the States, and still others (still) the War of Northern Aggression is in our DNA.

The United States is at a crossroads.  More than ever, those who supported the man who is now our President and those who did not are at odds with each other.  So much so, that families and friendships have been torn apart.  People debate at work.  I find myself resenting those who voted a certain way, and I'm not the only one.  On both sides.


Our country has been in terrible situations before.  Perhaps, from history, we can learn some lessons before we tear ourselves apart.

I am therefore going to restart my Civil War Sunday feature, which ran from 2011 to 2015 (the 150th anniversary of that war) with two new Civil War Sundays.  The first one, next Sunday, will be on Frederick Douglass (because, apparently, some in our country think he is still alive.  Another Mandela Effect situation?)  I may continue this into March, with some selected reruns.

I can promise no less on Lincoln's birthday.

16 comments:

  1. We have so much to learn from history, if we'd only stop to do that.

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  2. Frederick Douglass alive? Really? Way back in my ancient history when I was a union president in the City of Detroit, I was grousing about how I did not want the contract negotiations with the incoming Mayor (Coleman Young) to get political. The City negotiator informed me that 'everything in life is political'. Sadly, he may be right.

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    1. In all fairness to the President, he may have phrased a comment about Frederick Douglass in a way that he didn't mean. This came from The Washington Post: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2017/02/02/trump-implied-frederick-douglass-was-alive-the-abolitionists-family-offered-a-history-lesson/?utm_term=.09867a4f9541

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  3. Hi,
    I am with you. I votedd for Clinton. My husband voted his party, the Republican party. I don't talk politics with him any more although he'd like too-- there are enough people on social media to chat politics with.
    Janice

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    1. That has to be hard, having a spouse on the "other side of the aisle" during these times. Ironically, when we first met (over 45 years ago), my husband-to-be and I were on different ends of the political spectrum. He, eventually (after Ronald Reagan was elected), came over to my side - and even surpassed me in some ways.

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  4. Hi Alana,
    I saw the second, the Lumber, commercial. Heartwrenching! #ImStillWithHer.
    Janice

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    1. It was. I had tears in my eyes, although there are some contradictions in the narrative. Trump did say there would be a beautiful door in the wall, but I doubt he would have meant it to open for the mother and young daughter pictured in the video, just because the daughter wove an American flag from scraps she found along the journey.

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  5. The number of politically fueled ads seems to be rising! Isn't it wonderful we live in a country which still allows free speech.

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  6. Emotions are really running high. I decline to debate it with almost anybody because it is just too controversial.

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    1. It's a good policy, Yogi. Fortunately, photographing the sky hasn't become political - yet.

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  7. What I found interesting in the talk around the Super Bowl (which I did not see any part of as I don't care for football) was how the commercials were seen as so political even though they weren't. Somehow, the views espoused have now come under attack.

    I worry. I'd like to give the other side the benefit of the doubt, but it scares me that they don't see how dangerous the rhetoric is.

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  8. Love your Civil War stories. I'm glad you are bringing them back.

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  9. Everything has become about Trump... Everywhere in social media and otherwise. Looking forward to read more about their series.

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  10. I am married to an American who thinks Trump is good for America, while I despise the man and the people who surround him. I followed the election and was in Miami on election night, when I saw that he was going to win I had to run to the loo. If it affected me like that and I am not American I can well imagine how it has affected those who were with her! I have made a pledge that I will not be visiting the USA until that nincompoop and his cohorts are out of office. America scares me!

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  11. Alana, Your words are classic and I could not have said it better: "The United States is at a crossroads. More than ever, those who supported the man who is now our President and those who did not are at odds with each other. So much so, that families and friendships have been torn apart. People debate at work. I find myself resenting those who voted a certain way, and I'm not the only one. On both sides." I am still trying to wrap my mind around the fact that this man is our President. Garrison Keillor has also said it better than I can in an article he titled "Trump has me searching for a new religion". Worth checking out if you have time! https://tinyurl.com/hbyyw7z

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