This session

I attended the birthday of a my friend who turned 75 last weekend. I was seated at a table of several people I did not know, all about his age who knew my friend from his various activities like ecstatic dance, dream interpretation and activist letter writing. I listened to them discuss at length the presidential candidates, their frustrations with calling their reps, their general burnout on engaging with the political system. They had all been at it for years, one man since getting his draft number for the Vietnam War. I related my own experience engaging with our democracy, which has been more involved on the state level this session. Since January, I’ve volunteered with a policy action group that goes to the capitol each week to visit reps. Every Sunday we get together and discuss which bills to support and oppose. It’s been an educational process for me, I understand the process of lawmaking now and feel comfortable in the halls of legislature talking to staffers about issues I care about. But it’s far from exciting. It’s a grind. It’s a mildly fascinating machine that renders all issues so important as to be unimportant, the way we obliquely know that without our involvement the whole thing crumbles. It’s politics, as they say. And we don’t get to outlive it.

Sarah Wambold