There’s a lot of anxiety in the air. Many people are biting their nails over next week’s presidential election. Just as many are freaked out because George Lucas sold his Star Wars franchise to Disney.
Disney taking over Star Wars? Among true sci-fi fans, it’s cause for major depression. As for the election, half the population will be proclaiming the end of the world this time next week.
Yet the American and Galactic Republics will go on, no matter what we believe.
All jesting aside, I don’t know many people who seriously care if future Star Wars movies suck or not. My kids are both crazy SW fans and never miss an episode of “The Clone Wars.” On hearing that George Lucas sold the franchise to Disney and that Disney plans more Star Wars movies, Sean’s reaction was fairly balanced: “Fine. As long as they don’t make it all princess-y.”
The presidential election is a far more serious matter. I can’t believe how so many of my perfectly sane friends have gone insane over Obama vs. Romney. Facebook is ready to collapse under the weight of all the conspiracy theories people on the left and right are posting.
Friends are angrily calling each other names when one posts something in support of the candidate they oppose. The right keeps crying about a socialist-Islamic takeover of America if Obama is re-elected. The left keeps wailing over the loss of the safety net, the poor and disadvantaged allowed to fall into the fires of Hell. These feelings are captured in Facebook memes people accept as instant truth without investigating the accuracy of what’s said.
The more centrist among us know neither vision of the future is accurate. The truth is, life will pretty much go on no matter who wins.
The sun will still come up in the morning. People will still have the same blessings and woes they had the day before. The world will continue to spin on its axis.
I’m not trying to belittle anyone. I’m just drawing from personal experience. For me, the fate of the world once seemed to hang on the next election. In 1994, when I was a lot more liberal than I am today, I felt devastated and depressed when the GOP swept both chambers of Congress. Two years before that, when Bill Clinton was elected president, I thought all would be right with the world. A lot of people had the same emotional jolt four years ago when Obama was elected.
But in more recent years, I’ve found that my personal happiness has nothing to do with which way the political winds blow. My happiness or sadness is based completely on my own actions. If I live each day as the man I want to be, I’m happy. If I succumb to my weaknesses, I’m sad.
I’ll end this with a lyric from the Avett Brothers that to me says it all:
When nothing is owed, deserved or expected
And you’re life doesn’t change by the man that’s elected
If your loved by someone you’re never rejected.
Decide what to be and go be it.