I want what I want when I want it and HOW I want it.
Well, sorry. That’s not how it happens.
This weekend I binged the first three episodes of the wildly imaginative and riveting new Amazon series, Hunters. In it, Al Pacino plays a wealthy NYC Holocaust survivor who leads a secret ragtag band of avengers out to exterminate a small organized army of Nazis and pro Hitler youth bent on creating a Fourth Reich.
Think X-Men meets Inglorious Bastards told through the eyes of a Gen X’er in the late 1970s.
Mixing fact and fiction, as dramatists are wont to do, Hunters is a crazy ride through a cross-section of imagined superhero type adventures (Note: Sans supernatural powers) and serious, sometimes gruesome reinventions of Holocaust atrocities. The latter are quite difficult to look at and yet impossible to look away from.
As a somewhat diminutive Jewish boy from NYC who also felt powerless in my younger days, especially when it came to Nazis and bullies, I found myself LOVING every moment of Hunters, especially for the dramatic and sweet comic revenge the series offered.
Still, this hasn’t stopped its inevitable condemnation from a large and loud group of detractors.
Those include any number of Jewish groups who’ve chastised the series and its creators for inventing Nazi cruelties in a reimagined Grand Guignol type setting. The same type of setting many of them also applauded in the above-mentioned, and Oscar-winning, Tarantino film.
Other virulent critics and social media observers were a lot more Guignol in their characterization, dismissing the entire affair as Jewsploitation.
One organization, dedicated to preserving the site of the Auschwitz camps as a memorial and preemptive warning for future generations, even called it dangerous foolishness.
Never mind the series’ 31-year old creator and show runner, David Weil, is the grandson of a Holocaust survivor and used his grandmother’s stories as a jumping off point for many of the ideas in the program.
Now taste is taste and certainly no one is obligated to love, like or even tolerate something if it is not to their sensibilities.
On the same token, one can safely assume that none of us, critics or boosters alike, are fans of the Holocaust or disagree that the return to power of Nazis and a new Fourth Reich would be a heinous, dangerous thing.
In other words, we are all in 100% in agreement on the overriding need of getting the word out on that specific dramatic message. It’s simply the means by which we get there that we disagree on.
Another way to put it is that when it comes to the most important stuff, we are all on the SAME team, if not page.
You might see where I’m going here. But in case you don’t, here goes:
I believe the United States is right now on the verge of our own modern day Holocaust: of democracy, our core values, our safety and our liberties.
I believe the determining factor on which way it goes will be whether we reelect Donald J. Trump to the presidency later this year.
I believe the overwhelming majority of Democrats, and more Republicans than many of us imagine, agree on this. Certainly the majority of registered voters in the country agree. As they did in the last election.
Yet here’s what I’ve witnessed among my own intimate group of fellow friends, associates and Americans, many of them Democrats, in the last few weeks:
– The condemnation of comedian John Mulaney by numerous like-minded Dems for daring to say he’d like to play Pete Buttigieg if they ever made a film about the candidate’s life. (Note: FYI, Mulaney has not even endorsed Buttigieg).
– A massive social media backlash against show biz icon Bette Midler for tweeting that Mike Bloomberg is our best choice to dethrone Trump. (Note: Several fans screamed that they’re done with her forever even though Midler has been a vociferous and almost daily anti-Trump voice on Twitter for over a year).
– Very personal rantings from a bunch of close male friends against Elizabeth Warren because she dared to confront Mike Bloomberg very directly about his past treatment of women during the last two presidential debates and, as the logic goes, ruined his chance of election.
– The vow to SIT OUT the election entirely and NOT VOTE from a powerful small group of wealthy Dem donors I know if Bernie Sanders winds up being our party nominee.
– The vow to NEVER VOTE for any moderate Democratic nominee – especially Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg and, yeah, Bloomberg – from any number of younger Dems that I know.
– The thorough CONFUSION of many of the people closest to me on which Democratic candidate to vote for in the primary due to the fear that if the if they choose the person they TRULY SUPPORT they are wasting their vote because that person CAN’T WIN or WONT BE THE NOMINEE and they will thus unwittingly help nominate another candidate they loathe, dislike or generally would be quite reluctant to vote for.
Talk about SELF-SEWING American discord according to Russia’s plan.
Not to be scolding, but, well, now is the time for us all to grow the f-ck up.
What this means is: vote for whomever you REALLY want in the primary. ANYONE. And then unite behind the major party candidate your party nominates in order to rid our country of the Nazi in OUR House.
This might seem like hyperbole but in my mind it’s not.
This might seem like a difficult choice to make but if you don’t overcomplicate it, it isn’t.
See, on the big issues of Reichs and Nazi-like behavior, the objectives that unite as are pretty simple and a lot stronger than any which divide us.
Or should be.