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The season of complaining

Matthew Gillham

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Fear not—as our whines of Spring Break’s abrupt conclusion start to fall on deaf ears, it looks like most of us have secured a right to complaints that’ll last even longer than each semester’s disgruntled broadcasts of how busy you are (no way!).

I mean, I think I did. Two weeks removed from the Alabama primary, and I’ve very nearly locked up that borderline constitutional right for the next four years. Because what’s the presidency if not someone to complain about, to groan over, to become the scapegoat to all of our problems because some other moron voted for them? Granted, I could mess this all up in November, but if all goes well, I’ll be guaranteed four years of “don’t look at me, I didn’t vote for them!” And for that, Kasich, I thank you—an Ohio victory isn’t giving me much reason to hope.

And I know I’m not alone—college students across Alabama and throughout the country are finding reason to celebrate in their voting choices.

You Bernie fans, you know what I’m talking about. You’ve found a candidate you can support wholeheartedly, while at the same time secretly acknowledging his chances at president are dwindling and little more than my chances of getting anyone who doesn’t already know me to read this article. Plus, if Bernie became the establishment, who would you have to blame? But you all know this already—well played.

And Rubio and Bush supporters, you were right there with us too—but have been left disappointed to find you’ll have to take another gamble on aligning with a new hopeless candidate to strip yourselves of four years of responsibility. And lucky for you, there’s plenty of room in our camp without approaching the danger of a *gasp* nomination.

Cruz might be polling within striking distance of Trump, but let’s face it—the longer his campaign goes on, the likelihood increases that he’ll actually have to take a stance on something other than guns. And the more opinions he drops as primaries leave the South for the Northeast, the more his poll numbers will begin to align with the opinions of virtually the entire U.S. Senate. Voila, welcome to the club, Cruz fans.

But think of all the awkward political conversations you’ve now exempted yourself from. Uncle Jimmy starts rambling again about the country of old and the sorry leadership qualities of a president who actually cares about immigrants, and if you’re a Clinton voter you might be the responsible party staring down the barrel of a loaded Uncle. But for the rest of us, we’ll stand at ease, knowing we’ve successfully avoided any responsibility and all of Uncle Jimmy’s toothless frowns.

Not all of us are so lucky though. Trump voters have to be shaking in their boots these days. Any educated Trump voter (legend has it, they exist) has to fear the day that immigrants are barred from the country and their life isn’t any less miserable because of it. But the other, let’s say, 100 percent of Trump supporters will, Lord-willing, never see that shocking, startling day of judgment anyway.

Hillary supporters, you might be the exception here. After all, you’ve endured years of defending the Commander-in-Chief—heck, defending Clintons through mischief and trial is all you’ve known. But the few years of flirting with the blame game in Bush’s second term have long since ended, and any remaining finger-pointing at GW has been replaced with a swift defense of Obama and all the economy’s pitfalls that have nothing to do with the president anyway.

So as your screams at the TV throughout March Madness season (damn you, MTSU!) and your annual Facebook post about how your bracket has inevitably busted begin to fade, take heart in knowing you’re moving closer to, and not out of, the best four years of your life, where you’re guaranteed all the complaining and blaming your soul could ever desire. Thanks, Obama.

Matthew Gillham is a senior majoring in economics. His column runs biweekly.

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The season of complaining