Steve starts his day by slipping out of bed and flicking on his iPod docking station. His favorite “radio” personality delves deeper into the supposed scandal surrounding the harvesting of AP phone records and the audacity of the Republican war machine to stir up trouble in an attempt to undermine the current administration. Dimly, he decides he wouldn’t mind if his phone records were obtained — after all, he has nothing to hide.
As Steve gets into his car, he switches the radio to a local station that praises Obama’s use of drones in the war against terror, describing them as an exemplary tactic against potential domestic threats to our national security. Steve silently cheers this new tactic despite his heavy involvement in anti-war protests only just five years ago.
When he reaches his favorite local watering hole — a Starbucks just down the street — he finds a suitable chair in the corner and sets up his Macbook Pro. After ordering his grande iced half-caf triple mocha latte macchiato and returning it (too much mocha, not enough latte), he sits down and reads the headlines, sipping his drink. Immediately he feels rage build inside him when he sees that Eric Holder is under fire for possible perjury again. As if the Attorney General of the United States would be guilty of such ridiculous claims. Steve is equally enraged to see protests springing up over a new policy allowing undocumented citizens equal access to secondary education by giving them in-state tuition. Of course, while Steve frets over the injustice levied against Mexicans in America, he conveniently forgets that Holder’s “Fast & Furious” program led to the deaths of hundreds of Mexicans in Mexico. But, being an incidental victim of narrow-sighted out-of-sight-out-of-mind philosophy, Steve casually returns to his macchiato.
Before he heads out to work, Steve writes a blog post about the necessities of fighting corporatism at every turn, using the same voice and word choice he used when writing in support of Occupy Wall Street. Naturally, he ignores the Apple logo on his laptop as he clicks that “Publish” button and sends his ignorant thoughts out into the blogosphere.
When he gets to his job, a minimum wage position at a local bookstore selling material ranging from the occult to the tenets of Islam to the dangers of Darwinian capitalism, he argues with a customer, Michael, about the nature of the IRS and taxes. Michael is looking for information on the history of the IRS in his upcoming research paper about government corruption, but Steve sees this as a prime opportunity to educate this low-information voter on the importance of civic duty — although he neglects to mention that he tried to put off signing up for Selective Service until the age of 20 and even posits that the IRS targeting tactics are a good thing, necessary for the progress of the country. Nor does he mention that his salary is low enough to allow him to claim “Exempt” on his federal taxes.
Michael was told by some colleagues that this local bookstore may have a different view on current issues, and he quickly learns that “different” simply isn’t so different any more. He leaves, frustrated, without making a purchase. Meanwhile, Steve feels a heightened sense of importance as he watches Michael leave, content to know that he’s made the world just a bit brighter yet unaware that he’ll later have to explain to his boss why profits are at an all-time low. But that won’t matter to Steve — he knows that the dissemination of truth is of a higher importance than something as trivial as profits.
After work, Steve turns the radio back on and hears a disgusting report that the Boy Scouts are patronizing gays again. That evening, he attends several rallies downtown to promote gay awareness, one of which is strictly focused on gay women’s rights — admittedly, he’s also hoping for an “in” with some of the straight women, but they seem entirely uninterested in his clear commitment to the advancement of their cause. They don’t even look twice when he shouts, “Girl power!”, which he thought for sure would garner some attention.
Steve returns home and ignores the news report detailing further complications with the Benghazi “scandal”. Instead, his mind wanders to the poor souls who are denied the right to love on a daily basis.
As you’re no doubt aware, Steve is the very embodiment of hypocrisy, wallowing in his self-righteousness and condemning those who are merely different than him while espousing “tolerance” and “solidarity”. He is the very emissary of his savior, Barack Obama, who on a daily basis antagonizes those who would earn their living honorably and reasonably while sending his dogs of war — the IRS — to harass the very men and women of this country who still believe the American dream is possible through hard work rather than handouts.
Steve is merely one in an entire series of generations who believes the government is the answer despite the constant barrage of evidence to the contrary. Unwittingly, Steve has become the enemy — not of the state which he so cherishes, but of the people he so scorns. His refusal to accept his responsibility of the nation’s downfall does not trivialize his involvement.
I share this with you not because I despise Steve; rather, I pity him. He is an enemy society hasn’t quite encountered since the Greeks were overtaken by more practical societies. Our only hope of defeating Steve is not through logic, reason, or even coercion. It is through the retaking of our education system that ensure his ilk no longer has the power to have a strong voice in society again.
Of course, such a lofty goal may take years to accomplish — but if the less honorable and less reasonable of our society like Steve and Obama have proven anything, it’s that it can be done.