When I started this blog, I saw it as a chance to weigh on a wide variety of topics and ideas, including ideas that I fully admit I don’t have the credentials to talk about at all. I’m a playwright with wifi. I’m not a journalist, nor am I a policy expert.
But. While I’m also not an economist, I spent two years trying to learn enough about economics to write a play about two important economists; I’m not a scholar of Mormonism, but have dipped my toe into the field; I’m an historian, but in theatre history. I’m a reasonably well-read generalist, with a pack rat mind, and the most varied possible reading habits. I’m a pretty experienced movie and theatre critic. I’m a baseball and basketball nut. And so I thought my blog would be like, well me. Eclectic and curious. All over the map. I strive for open-mindedness, and although I am a liberal, I respect conservatives and conservatism, and try at least to get it right. I want to be reasonable. I like conversation. And I’m always willing to admit it when I’m wrong about something. And I enjoyed blogging. I looked forward to it. And some people were kind enough to say that they enjoyed reading it.
Then two things happened. The first is, my health took a nasty turn, and I had to endure several months of hit-and-miss medical issues. I won’t bore you with the details, and I am doing much better now, but I found that I often just didn’t have the energy to do something as creative, even, as blogging.
But the second is–and I’m ashamed to admit this–but Donald Trump’s Presidency just wore me down. The lying, the buffoonish approach to policy, the savage destruction of governing norms, the blatantly incapable people in his cabinet, the crudeness, the coarseness, the open racism, the Islamaphobia–I just reached the point where I didn’t want to write about it. I could, of course, have simply abandoned politics as a subject. But that felt like an abdication of citizenship. There have been Presidents in the past that I simply disagreed with. But this is something different, something new, something unprecedented. The Trump Presidency represents, if anything, an ongoing crisis, a continuing assault on the most cherished American values.
And it doesn’t matter. I have voted for Republicans for public office on occasion, when I thought they were more capable than their opponents. I live in Provo; most of my friends are Republicans. I have generally thought of Republican politicians as fundamentally decent, honorable, patriotic people with whom I differed on matters of policy.
Not any more. Not now. The craven willingness of national Republicans to enable the worst instincts of the worst human being to serve as President in our nation’s history is probably the most disheartening part of our current political environment.
It wore me down. If I just wrote movie reviews or wry commentary on Mormon culture, I’d be ignoring an all-encompassing national emergency. So I took the cowards’ way out. I stopped writing at all.
No more. I will resume a full blogging schedule starting tomorrow. And yes, I will review movies, and comment on Mormon culture, and reflect on sports, and chat about theatre, and tell you about the new book I just read. But I will also address national issues of import.
I’m sorry I went away. If you’ve given up on me, I don’t blame me. But I’m back, and will try to re-earn your trust.