I have been encouraged by my therapist to write more. In our sessions, I often mention this journal because I think, despite many rambling unedited passages, I come to some lovely little turns of phrase that sum up difficult feelings. Today’s session revolved around the concept of authority, and how I’ve always understood its necessity and butt heads with those who don’t. Not dictatorship, not authoritarianism, just authority.
Eventually, the buck must stop. Where you lay that burden, you must also invest your trust. Representative democracy in America has become a site of lax accountability with maximum power, as authority no longer requires trust, but the same looks-driven awe that we grant our entertainers. Perhaps it is only nostalgia, but I seem to remember a time when people became handsome or beautiful by way of their talent, and were not suddenly granted a status of talented merely for being beautiful. Models and actors were dumb until otherwise noted, not seen as members of some cultural elite who knew better than our leaders.
I am glad that Obama is handsome and hip, because I believe he had great things in mind for the country many of which came true. I am halfway onboard with his drone policy, but only halfway. It seems more humane, and we cannot fall victim to the fallacy of slippery slope when it comes to privacy and totalitarianism. He is a good leader, and with whatever places I might criticize, I grant that he took on the burden of leadership as bests he could, unlike say Bush, who was not a leader, but won his presidency — if we accept that there were no voter conspiracies — based on a sort of snuggly harmlessness in the face of a world which then seemed to be on the mend.
Authority is not granted me despite my track record NOR my obvious genetic tendencies toward leadership. I am tall, hale, and strong. I am tactful, clear-eyed, and efficient. So, where the disconnect? Must I be a tyrant to be heard?
Thus, the pen. After all, no one can hold any authority over my writing, and I may be able to express myself best in this environment, whatever self-doubt may linger. I am already a shut-in, so bonus points there. I have a degree in the subject. I have been called a natural storyteller. I even hold awards, however far out of date, for my writing.
I have been making a sincere attempt to write more for my own mental health, and my ability to exert self-discipline has grown in recent years. Writing it may have to be.