my fellow americans.
this is a post especially for my american pals. first of all, i miss you. i’m homesick. kiss the ground there for me. second, i hope you all had a great labor day weekend and that covid cases across the states don’t shoot through the roof.
now….i am fully aware that a post this “partisan” may lose me some patrons. i hope not, but i’m okay with it. it’s time to get specifically political, eh.
greetings from the library in havelock north, aotearoa new zealand.
i have used their one-time log in and am hidden away in the corner writing this while ash tries to find some decent zombie books in the children’s section. he is irritated that there are not more zombie books, in general. what is it with zombies? why? is it that death is horrifying, but zombies are dead, but not dead, and so children cling to them because they suck the horror out of death?
i have been trying to understand. maybe i will never understand.
speaking of the zombie apocalypse, let’s talk about the election for a moment.
on a personal note: i have had five conversations with five different american friends – almost all with small children – in the past three days.
one has left new york and moved to canada for the year, working on the assumption that she will stay there in turmp gets into office.
one is living in new york but thinking about moving to portugal if trump gets in.
one couple is considering a move to norway.
another is planning a move to canada from new england.
one is thinking of moving to berlin.
they are all struggling with the conflict between their desire to stay and help, and not abandon ship, and their desires to keep their children safe.
why am i saying this?
because it all feels so real.
because it is real.
it’s not something i discuss often, but i was a german studies major at university. that was my bachelor’s degree from wesleyan, in 1998.
i read a lot of books about weimar, the rise of the third reich, the holocaust, the aftermath and the DDR. i know my history. i know what things were like in germany in the 1920s, then early 30s.
i know what people thought was impossible; that it would never happen.
i know that at a certain point, many people – jews, intellectuals, artists, people appalled by the nazi rise to power – starting fleeing berlin for – among other places – america.
i’m just gonna leave that there.
we’ve come full fucking circle.
(by the way, berlin, i have decided that after a long think, my show in berlin was the best of the tour. so if you’re reading this feeling weird, at least….there’s that. my best show of tour was at the admiralspalast. thanks for that.)
so, on that note.
i wanted to take a moment to talk to you all about VOTING.
i just requested my absentee ballot, and i’ll be casting my vote from about as far away from america as it gets. (photo care of xanthea o’connor, and the chickens were FEELING it).
i was shocked to see on my instagram post of this picture that there were american living overseas that LITERALLY DID NOT KNOW THAT YOU COULD DO THIS. they didn’t know about absentee ballots. if my fucking instgram was every good for anything, it was that – i educated this ONE person about voting, and now they’re gonna vote.
assume nothing, people.
there is a man in the white house who does not want you to vote, and ii know a lot of you must (ahem) have strong feelings about politics at the moment.
i have said, many times, over the years: “I DO NOT CARE YOU YOU VOTE FOR. JUST VOTE!!!”
i am not going to say that this time. not for this election. no.
please, in this presidential election: vote for joe biden and kamala harris.
i know joe biden and kamala harris are not perfect.
i know that the two-party system is fucking broken.
i know that we need to burn it all down.
i know that biden is an establishment candidate, and i know that kamala’s track record isn’t spotless.
i know. i know.
i know that bernie sanders or elizabeth warren would have been preffered by many of you. i know that the green party would probably be better for the future of our planet children, and i know that many of you cannot get enthused about a candidate who is an old white man so close to the center.
i am getting on my bended eyeballs and asking you to vote for biden and harris despite all that.
i am begging you, because we cannot, cannot have another four years of trump running democracy into the ground.
i am also begging you to organize, in any way you possibly can, even with COVID going on.
i am beggin you to, along with me, not make the mistake i, and many of us, made back in 2016, walzting with relative complacency towards the election, thinking that clinton had it in the bag.
i am begging you – begging you – to reach out across time and space in any and all ways and get ready to join an army of people in america who do not want to see another four years of trump degrading the fabric of democracy.
i am also asking you.
i am begging and asking.
i am hoping.
there is a great article in the new york times here about absentee ballot voting…go see here.
and there’s a link on the forum about it here: https://forum.theshadowbox.net/t/americans-voting-overseas-absentee-ballot-stuff/5137/3
about spreading the WORD ABOUT VOTING, i have thoughts…..
if you don’t know quite what to do or where to send people, start now by simply emailing your friends, posting to social media, and otherwise clamoring from the rooftops THIS LINK:
i have worked with headcount for over ten years at my shows (and dolls shows) and i can vouch for them.
they have registered thousands of people to vote in the lobbies of my concerts.
they are just AWESOME.
and…they have worked very hard to make a website that is very, very user-friendly…for old-timers AND first-time voters.
on their site, you can check your voter status, find out where to vote, and more.
it’s a great site for EVERYBODY, including 18 year olds who might be confused or intimidated about the voting process. it helps you vote by mail.
it’s just a great site run by great people. get behind them.
it’s a great catch-all link to blast out to your friends and family.
they’re also on social media (on twitter and insta: @headcountorg).
if nothing else, give them a follow and help retweet and amplify their posts.
one more thing i want to recommend…..
everybody gets their daily news somewhere….the TV, facebook, the new york times podcast, the guardian, whatever.
i have been following this journalist lately who does a daily news round-up, and it has been one of my favorite new discoveries.
nightly, instead of scrolling through the endless painful headlines of the NY times app, i just read the daily news round-up from heather cox richardson, aka “letters from an american”.
she’s an excellent thinker, writer, and commentator, and she is crowdfunded.
i am one of her patrons/supporters.
here’s here update from the 6th, and it was so good, i wanted to cut and paste the whole post here on my page.
you can subscribe to her directly here, she used substack.
that’s all for now, my fellow americans.
SHUT UP AND SING
p.s. here are some photos of ash on the beach yesterday. this darth vader costume was a birthday present from dada, all the way from scotland…i let him open it early. his birthday is september 16th, and we’re planning an epic party. he misses his dad. yesterday was also father’s day in new zealand. it would have been easier on both of us if his school hadn’t armed him with candy and chocolate to bring home to to his father. why do they do that?