God rest ye merry, everyone

Nothing underscores the spirit of the winter holidays more than the promise of more nuclear weapons and the specifics of where to build that wall between the U.S. and Mexico. But as we dive headlong into the holidays in a sleigh pulled by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing (sorry, Mr. Shakespeare), I just want to thank all of those who have read my blogs, sometimes commented on them, sometimes shared them, and always joined their political misery with mine these past twelve months, and more especially the past forty-odd days.

Maybe I don’t need the hyphen in forty-odd. It works with or without.

Oh yeah, now Christmas.

For most of my life I thought the carol God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen  was about merry gentlemen whom God for some reason wanted to rest. Then a few years back I learned that “God Rest Ye Merry” is itself a wish where “rest” means (or used to mean) keep or maintain, maybe as in “the prosecution rests.” So God rest ye merry, all those who have tagged along through the muck and mire and overriding gloom of my blog.

As for the others.

Well, God rest ye merry, Donald Trump—may this be the only year you and your daughter are forced to slum in that old mansion in D.C. You’ll be happier in the Tower—of London preferably, but any one will do.

God rest ye merry, Kellyanne Conway who, more than anyone else, has shanghaied us where we are today. With the unscrupulousness of a myrmidon you led your man to the top, and as much as I admire your skills and detest your results, I also know that had you been Mrs. Clinton’s campaign manager, the majority of Americans would have less to bemoan this December. Yes, the majority, by three million.

God rest ye merry, cable news networks whose viewership has diminished since they got it all wrong. Now of course they’ve discovered fact-checking and holding feet to the fire, and though I don’t blame those media as much as I blame the American people for actually choosing (and not even at gunpoint!) an admitted assaulter of women and tax evader. May your 2017 be a lot less merry.

God rest ye merry, newspapers. You didn’t have it wrong, and the better ones among you pounded Trump for months on lies and exaggerations and misstatements—and then after November 8 watched your subscriptions multiply as people began to learn the truth—that TV networks want you to watch so that they can sell you something. Newspapers want you to read so you’ll learn something.

God rest ye merry, Steve Bannon for “exposing” the left-wing plot to fire Roger Ailes and the “half a holocaust’s” worth of babies Planned Parenthood killed, for the trashy reference to Gabby Giffords as a human shield for gun control advocates, for asserting that Huma Abedin had inarguable connections to terrorism, and that women who did not want to be harassed on line should log off. Someday we’ll discuss those circles of hell, Mr. Bannon, and ascertain which one fits best for you, but until then rest ye Merry, Steve: we’ll find your circle.

Finally, God rest ye merry, all of “ye.” And if you’re still waking up in the morning furious and disgusted (is there anyone who isn’t?) do your best to celebrate with those like-minded people I mentioned in a previous blog. They’re out there offering and receiving strength, commiseration, and kindness. They’re supporting charities, supplying food banks, and providing clothing for the poor and needy. It’s the kind activity someone like Donald Trump could never understand—and that’s what makes it even better.

Maybe as the days grow imperceptibly longer and we use them imperceptibly better, 2017 will be imperceptibly brighter.

At any rate, Habari gani?, Happy Hanukkah,and Merry Christmas.

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Chuck Radda

I'm a former high school English teacher, currently a literacy volunteer and novelist. I invite your responses right here or to chuckradda@gmail.com. You can also follow me on Facebook and on Twitter—where I tweet annually at @chuckrad45.

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