By GORDON GLANTZ
GORDONVILLE — It’s that time of the year again.
Time for New Year’s resolutions.
With five-plus decades on the planet, I have been through them all – losing weight, gaining muscle, not losing my mind (as much) during Eagles games, gaining perspective, etc.
This year, I’m shooting for something a little bit different.
Instead, I’m going to see how the other half lives. I’m going to give it a go as a conservative.
No worries, fellow liberals, I’ll be back in time to vote against their president (not ours) in November.
New Year’s resolutions only last as long as the first whiff of a real Philly cheese steak (not what is passed off as such out here in the suburbs).
But, in the intervening months – or weeks, days or minutes – let’s see how it goes.
It is certainly a simpler lifestyle having this view, one where I can just line up all the talking points in a row and dutifully march in line behind them.
Example: Anything nasty their president (not ours) has done up until this point, before becoming president and since, can easily be explained away.
He was chosen by God.
Who can argue with that, right?
It implies he is not only absolved of all sins – past, present and future – but that all decisions are blessed by the almighty.
Sure, there is no tangible evidence to back this up. Usually, people who claim to be messengers from God are tossed into asylums, not the Oval Office.
And if any lefty wants to get into details about what he has done wrong, the new me can just say it’s all fake news and/or a witch hunt that’s all orchestrated by the same mainstream media that helped invent his campaign in the first place.
What about all the mounting evidence of incompetence, and incoherence, let alone evidence for impeachment?
Deflect and distract.
Fight any forms of nuanced thinking.
That’s their job, not mine.
Don’t tread on me? Hell yeah, I’ll even buy that flag and plant it in my turf.
I’m the true patriot here.
Show empathy toward others, I’ll promptly call you a snowflake (while crawling toward my own safe space for being called a “deplorable” or if you recently wished me “happy holidays” instead of a “Merry Christmas”).
If they persist with their elitist check mates, I’ll lob a “What about Obama?” hand grenade.
When they ask for specifics, I’ll just double down and say “all of them.”
And then, when all else fails, there is the old standby: Benghazi, with a side dish of Benghazi and a desert of even more Benghazi.
Top it off with a “lock her up.”
See how easy this is?
See how much fun?
The next mass shooting? I’ll just shrug it off, callously, and say it could not have been stopped – even if there is evidence that it easily could have been with a routine background check, or waiting period, on the assailant.
Greta Thunberg? Ha. Too small to make a difference. Plus, isn’t she autistic or something like that there?
Plus, she’s Swedish, not American.
Plus, there is the old standby of waiting on a deep freeze and cracking wise about Al Gore (even though a cold snap in our little corner of the world is not reflective of all that is happening elsewhere).
Knowing that everybody plays the fool – sometimes – I can just say all the science isn’t in, or go to the slight moderation that there is no proof that the scourge is man-made. After all, there is always a crackpot contrarian at some third-rate unaccredited college still saying that the earth is flat or that there is not proof that tobacco causes lung cancer, right?
If those dogs won’t hunt, I’ll channel the mind of the average conservative who knows, full-well, that climate change is real.
“Doesn’t matter to me,” I’ll say. “By the time the planet is unlivable, I won’t know the difference because I’ll be dead.”
And that’s it, right there, in a nutshell.
I could go into being pro-life while being fine putting babies in cages.
I can just say they are “illegal” (when they are the children of parents seeking asylum in a country where the path to citizenship for brown people is vastly different than it was for white people during the industrial revolution).
Beginning in 2020, for as long as I can take it, I am going to be the synonym of being conservative, despite Bible quotes to the contrary.
I’m going to be selfish.
If all is good for me in my stock portfolio, all is good in the ivory tower.
Can I pull it off?
No, sigh, I can’t.
Upon further review, forget it.
As easy as life would be to trade being kind and sensitive for being blissful and blind, I don’t want to live that way for even a millisecond.
I’m good the way I am.
This column ran in The Time Herald on Jan. 1, 2020