I went with an old familiar from David Bowie and Queen today. Queen’s Freddie Mercury is gone, along with David Bowie, unnecessary reminders about our final destinations.
They made their marks, though. Thanks to technology, solace can be had by listening to their performances again and again.
As today is election day in the USA (prompting some mental hearing of Alice Cooper and their song, “Elected”), but “Under Pressure” (released in 1981) seems more of a fit. Sadly, that’s because Trump and his followers, abetted by the GOP, are working hard to create obstacles for this civic duty. Once upon a day, the United States had low turnout but the elections themselves were flawlessly executed. A lot of that changed with the hanging chads debacle in Florida in 2000. At least, such is where it seems to start in my mind, as the SCOTUS was called upon to interpret state laws, halt the recount, and declare a winner. Since then, campaigning and elections have become more contentious in the USA.
The nature of Trump’s campaigning and the attributes of his base have added to the pressure. Trump wants votes to not be counted, squalling like an infant over cheating that doesn’t exist, threatening to challenge results in court beforehand, obviously attempting to intimidate voters. Gun and ammo sales are up. The FBI is warning of the threat of violence from armed Trump supporters.
More pressure yet comes from COVID-19. Again, politics are in play. Republican led states are leading as COVID-19 cases climb. As cases climb, hospitals fill, but our healthcare system under greater and greater pressure.
That pressure comes atop the economic pressure instilled by necessary measures to flatter the curve. Experts consistently warned that a sizeable chunk of the US population is working poor, without emergency savings, living from paycheck to paycheck. All that was swept under the rug. Now, coronavirus has curtailed the service and consumer economy, and people are under pressure to have enough money to pay the rent and buy food.
Yeah, it’s a mess. All of that is just a tiny fraction of the mess we’re in – so many things weren’t mentioned because I didn’t want to go too ranty before my coffee – but it all adds to the pressure that we face in the United States, part of the pressure we’re facing in the world, making the Queen/David Bowie song “Under Pressure” my choice for today’s theme music.
Now I need to go see a machine about some coffee. Cheers