An open letter to my Senator (Sinema)
Dear Senator Sinema:
Where is this middle, this aisle you are reaching across? Is it still there? When was it last seen? You and Middling Manchin assure us it’s there, shimmering like the mirage of compassionate conservatism in the Sonoran desert. Your constituents want to believe you but we just don’t see it, and we are quickly losing any faith we had in your vision. We’ve been blinded and burned before. The Trump, whose policies you too frequently and freakishly supported, told us things were there that were not, that lies were true. So truthfully, we’re confused.
Where did our Kyrsten Sinema go? Did you leave her in that legendary abandoned gas station? Where is the smart, caustic young dynamo willing to stand up to stupidity? Are you attempting to represent everything by committing to nothing, trying to out-Clinton the Clintons? That ended rather badly. Please pause your present performance and admit it; Boring Biden is on to something. You and the Senate have a chance to get something significant and good done before Climate change changes everything for the worst. Permanently.
You of all people should recognize the dead-end of reasoning with right wing-nuts. You’ve lived in a state defined by those limitations. Have they helped you? One does not “reach out” to people who mean to do you physical harm. You were in the Senate when it was invaded. Did you reach across the aisle then? For what; an apology, ammunition, a red jacket to camouflage the blue? How many of your Republican colleagues reached back across, stood up to the invaders, inspired by the traitors in (y)our midst? You want to be a “moderate”? Moderate your pals in the Republican Party!
After missing the crucial vote on proceeding with an investigation into that mob invasion, you allowed that you absented yourself for “personal reasons.” Your constituents can list quite a few “personal reasons” why your failure to act against rogue reactionaries directly impacts negatively on their own safety and quality of life. Remember when you listened to your supporters? Since you ascended to the Senate, we constituents hear nothing from you. It seems we are to shut up and listen because you know best. Narcissism mixed with arrogant naivete is dangerous, to you and to us.
When I first encountered you at Arizona State University in the early 2000’s, I was a new Arizonan and academic, and your outspokenness and commitment to progressive ideas felt tonic. Now you aspire to be a rancid blend of Susan Collins and John McCain, borrowing from the worst of each. Your contempt, formerly directed towards AZ Republicans, is now aimed exclusively at your Democratic colleagues and constituents. As you come into full fraudulence, aligning yourself for a post-Senate corporate position or think-tank, you camouflage your meetings with Big Pharma as “medical appointments” eyes on a prize far from Arizona. In the tradition of politicians, you used poor people, hopeful people, whom you claimed to understand.
While the IPCC report makes terrifyingly clear that our climate shall be “moderate” no more, we are assured by so-called political moderates that their legislation builds and reinforces resilient bridges and roadways. But the catastrophe caused by the very vehicles traveling on those very roads and bridges careens as before, crashing-out climate. We continue carbonizing, buttressing the bridges without a look at the river raging beneath. Pace, T.S, Eliot, the Anthropocene ends, not with a bang, but a press release, a fund-raiser, and a Senator from a dangerously warming state miming a reach “across the aisle,” washed away while she looks in the mirror.
Your mere constituent,