AuthorFarsad, Negin
PositionFeeling positive about the government and the coming midterm elections

I was recently having coffee at my usual spot, chatting with regulars, when the subject turned to Biden. You know, Joe Biden, President of the United States.

For the last two years, we have been hard-wired to say his name with a soupcon of disappointment, coupled with a minor eye roll that could be confused with indigestion. But, on this day, Biden was riding high on a few weeks of good news: The Inflation Reduction Act, an environmental bill masquerading as a Joe Manchin bill, was now law. The CHIPS Act, a potentially awesome jobs bill that was being overshadowed by the boring word "microchips," also became law. There's even a new law covering health care for veterans exposed to burn pits.

And then, the piece de resistance! The announcement of up to $20,000 of student debt relief for millions of borrowers. Never mind the fact that he had COVID-19 during most of this time. For Biden, Paxlovid jump-started Congress?!

As we drank our coffees and named win after win after win, one of my buddies stopped everything, got real scared ... and quietly said something that rhymes with "I feel schmoptimistic about the schmidterms." Of course, he daren't say the actual words.

We all got very quiet about this level of positivity and started immediately knocking on wood. I'm Iranian, and I've been knocking on wood since the cradle. But the rest of them, well, they were all just NERVOUS. You can't say anything positive! Not in this climate! We're supposed to be scared witless. We're supposed to be negative! We're supposed to let that negativity drive us to the polls!

Having a good feeling about THE MIDTERMS? Having nice things to say about THE PRESIDENT? What is this, 1962? Who does that?!

But this kind of accidental display of positivity kept happening to me. I was at the New York Comedy Club (I'm a comedian) when the very funny Ashley Austin Morris made a reference to Biden and student debt relief, and the audience of 150 people spontaneously cheered. WHAT? Yes. They cheered. Loudly. They had a nice feeling about this thing their President had done.

We've learned to never credit the Democratic Party with anything. We've learned to be bleak. Of course, with decisions like the overturning of Roe v. Wade, being bleak isn't hard.

But there also is some good news. Because, around the same time, the voters of Kansas overwhelmingly voted to protect the right to choose. And then there was even that one swing district special election in upstate New York that...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT