Tuesday, September 09, 2008

The Vampires Among Us

It’s a funny thing. The political season has just officially started and I’ve been reading a non-fiction book about vampires.
The book is titled Piercing the Darkness and it’s by a clinical psychologist turned reporter named Katherine Ramsland. She started this book because of the disappearance of another reporter and because of her fascination with vampires, a fascination that many of us have. So many of us, these days, love vampires… and with the advent of the Twilight books, many more of the straight laced among us are identifying with vamps as well.
I’ve always wondered why so many of us, myself included, are so in love with this creature of the night, this evil, maniacal, manipulator in the dark. A creature that… while he or she is telling you that they love you… while they’re giving you the best sex that you could ever imagine in your kinkiest fantasies… they are, literally, draining your life’s blood… killing you slowly… while you are begging for more.
Some of you may be saying… No, that’s not true. I don’t love vampires, I don’t read vamp fiction, I hate horror movies, and people who dress up as vampires or wear black all the time are just creepy weird.
Can I quote from Ramsland’s Book?

“As a culture, we participate in collective bad faith. We shun or denounce kids who dress as vampires even as we covertly encourage large-scale social vampirism. We often protect, and often institutionalize, the very thing that we claim to decry, and while we say that vampirism is evil, we support corporations and politicians that plunder us. Take whatever you need, is the unspoken philosophy, value people only insofar as they are useful. Protect yourself and survive, no mater what it takes. Others are merely numbers.
“Middle class success literally depends on vamping off others, but we conceal this secret behind a façade of order, respectability, and family values. We strip the environment, cut corners on health to promote profit, and harbor internal prejudices that dehumanize whole groups. We strive for domination, tolerate political scams, and remain indifferent to the strip mining of our well-being by those who have the power to impoverish us. We secretly cherish those in power and submit to their domination.
“Participants in the more overt vampire culture articulate what we wish to keep silent. They are a sharp-edged figure to our diffuse background; we see them more clearly than we see ourselves, so we label them and shove them into the category of “deviant” to try to separate them from the herd like wounded cattle. They are Other, not part of us. But like it or not, we’re their context. As long as we sanction forms of vampirism in our business practices, politics, and institutions, but pretend through our ideals that we don’t, we will have a youth culture willing to act out the vampire role, fueled by the turmoil of our own contradictions.”
Ramsland, Katherine. Piercing the Darkness: Undercover with Vampires in America Today. New York: HarperPrism, 1998, Page 249

And so, ask yourself this… while you’re watching the presidential debates… which of the two vamps are you going to have as your sire? Who has me most enthralled? And then, vote for the other guy. I’m not going to tell you who that is, because I’m voting none of the above. In my opinion, both candidates will bleed us dry and make us come back, begging for more.
You know what I’m going to do… I’m wearing my fangs as often as I can between now and the elections, just to remind people of who it is we have to choose from. Both of those guys will tell you anything you want to hear in order to make you their thrall. They will offer you the world all while they’re sucking you dry, and when they’re through with you, they’ll toss you aside like the hollow shadow that you are.
I was going to throw the endorsement of this blog site behind a candidate from the Vampire, Witch, & Pagan Party who goes by the name of Jonathan the Impaler. But after reading a bit about him on his blog and other sources… I’ve decided that he’s just a joke, and I can’t endorse a joke.
So none of the above has my vote… who’s with me?

Now, I need a new book to read. Something light and airy would be good.
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