I saw the beast of history for the first time last night. It was slinking through our electric city of San Francisco, marking the doors of hipsters and intellectuals with ram’s blood.
They didn’t know it; by morning many of them were back to talking about ideals that had to come true, even if it takes a hundred years: gay marriage, a multiple party system. No, my darling angel-haired idealists, those days are over. Your parents and grandparents fought for pluralism and civil rights. Your own children will inevitably be able to marry their gay lovers. But this is not the time. What passed in front of us was ever so much more complicated. ...
What happened last night was that the last feather of hope floated away. The last soft imagination that we had just enough consensus in this country to fix the forces that are pulling us apart, gone. Common sense isn’t going to triumph over sentimentality and melodrama. Neither security nor intelligence nor welfare are going to be fixed; all will be handed over to the security billionaires of San Diego and the economists in the pay of DC.
Copyright 2004 Knight Ridder. All rights reserved. Any copying, redistribution or retransmission of any of the contents of this service without the express written consent of Knight Ridder is expressly prohibited.