Sweet Home Alabama

Last Tuesday, Alabama voters sent a message to the world: “If we are forced to choose for U.S. Senator between an upstanding former Democratic prosecutor and a racist, sexist, anti-Semitic, homophobic Republican pedophile, with thousands of volunteers and millions of dollars flooding the state on behalf of the Democrat, we will choose the Democrat by a handful of votes.” The voters have spoken, loud and clear.

Welcome to America, where stalking young women will get you kicked off a corporate board of directors or almost elected U.S. Senator from Alabama. If you squinted hard enough Tuesday night you could still see the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham detonating, protesters being hit with water cannons and attacked by dogs in Selma, and Governor George Wallace standing in the schoolhouse door at the University of Alabama. At one harrowing point as the returns came in, the TV screen read as follows: Moore 50%, Jones 49%, Other 2 %. When the vote adds up to 101%, you know you’re in Alabama.

But in this political climate, in this world period, you have to be happy with whatever you can get. We won. By a pubic hair. But we won. Roy Moore couldn’t quite get over the hump. The gift of a little bit of sanity in the U.S. with seven nights of Hanukkah still left. The rank and file beat the rank and the ‘phile’. This is what happens when all the folks you molested attain voting age.

Sounds wonderful: Senator Doug Jones! I take back every foul thing I ever said about the great state of Alabama. Looks like they’ll host the 2032 Summer Olympics, win the competition for Amazon’s new headquarters, and launch a billion dollar urban gardening initiative. I wish I was gay so I could have my wedding down there. I’m working on the cake inscription right now. At the very least I’m headed to the Sugar Bowl to make out with a dude at the tailgate party. I’m going to take my life savings, buy a rundown but quaint building in Huntsville, put a transgender crisis center in the front, a yoga studio in the back, and run diversity sensitivity training classes on the second floor.

As for Judge Roy Moore, it’s back to the drawing board. Or the mall. Sure he’s calling for a recount. So am I. Was it really just eight sets of allegations against Roy Moore? You have to feel for him just a little bit, though. I for one finally understand why Roy Moore is against women and people of color having the right to vote. Yes, he’ll get on his high horse and stay there for a few more weeks. But in the end he’ll be delivering a concession speech from table 3 of the downtown Montgomery Chuck E. Cheese.

Our great nation can breathe a sigh of relief. The Judge had a nice run there for a while waxing nostalgic about the era before the 13th Amendment, but we should sleep well knowing he’ll probably never win Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin. 

As for the disenfranchised, disappointed, and disillusioned voters of Alabama, take heart. Ruth Bader Ginsburg can’t hold on forever. And even if this is basically it for Judge Roy Moore, cheer up, Cotton State. As you know, there is nothing in this world that can’t be cured by a bottle of moonshine and a bag of meth.

Rich Herschlag is well into his third decade as an author, consulting engineer, husband and father and is very tired.

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