Rock the Vote
Notes from the other side of the class war
By Izzy A. Hedin-Urrutia
Humans are creatures of tradition. We crave the familiar, the inherent, beautiful ease of understanding that “this is just the way things have always been”. Something about turning to centuries before us, regardless of effectiveness of methods, regardless of the presence of outdated worldviews, holds a deep-rooted grasp on the dark, lazy nature of our hearts. Why would we move towards change—tough, dramatic, long-term change, change that forces us to get off Tik Tok and roll up our Supreme-hoodie sleeves, change that denies us the basic pleasures of violence and the low road and not having to think for ourselves—when we can lay back and swaddle ourselves in the warm, fuzzy comfort of blissful inertia?
I cannot remember life before Rock the Vote.
I’ve heard stories. The dramatic intensity of late-stage political unrest. The incredulity of giving a few people the power to represent the votes of millions. The terror of living in a country so distinctly split down the middle, caught endlessly in a bloody tug-of-war between two political parties desperate to keep their piece of the status quo, while the establishment rested neatly on top of the heads of those who weren’t heard by either side. The point of no return began as soon as the people with nothing at stake at all suddenly started disappearing into carefully constructed, isolated communities, a menagerie of glass houses placed precariously on top of platforms 30 feet into the air. The bourgeoisie living on pedestals of steel beams—it was almost poetic how terrifying it was. When the rich and powerful began literally elevating themselves above the lower classes, it soon became abundantly clear that something needed to change—but as I’ve explained, most humans resent the effort that long-term, long-lasting change requires. They prefer, if it needs to happen at all, to let someone else do it, someone with a lot more drive and much less to lose.
Enter: The Order of Dwayne. Fast and Furious here. Jumanji there. Legend was that the central sect, the ones that started it all, was Race to Witch Mountain. A mysteriously vibrant group of anarchists and violent revolutionaries, the very first of the Order to don the anonymizing masks that distinguished them from other sects. I first heard of them on the radio, learning that a small uprising had cropped up in local WWE circles in the middle of Pennsylvania. One by one, each of the 50 states fell prey, and soon the streets between the steel beams were filled with eerily identical visages, full of sparkling eyes, crisp jawlines, and killer smiles. Within a few months, the grainy images of a mob of Dwaynes dragging the president out of the White House and pelting him to a bloody pulp with stones told us everything we needed to know: that it was over for the United States government. A new era was ushered in with the strength of our Hercules.
Today is election day, and I know, regardless of my fuzzy memory, that it will look much different than that of ages past. I received my Order-issued stone a week ago: Perfectly round and perfectly beige, resembling the holy smooth scalp of our savior. I walk between the steel beams, towering over me--holding the lives that I could never have, quite literally over my head. At the center of the forest of steel is the Mound, where our sect of the Order, San Andreas, gathers in a circle of thousands. I cannot actually see the mound very well, only the Elders standing atop it. The masses and the edges of the holes surrounding my eyes in my own mask make it very difficult to make out the rubble—but this isn’t what interests me, or the other Dwaynes, anyway.
One of the Elders grips the microphone, stolen from Above, in their tattooed hands, a popular homage present in members of the Moana sect—representatives from all are present here. This is no unequal system, where the voices of the people deemed unimportant are cast aside; one member from each sect is here: Tooth Fairy, Empire State, G.I. Joe, even Baywatch. No voice goes unheard. No perspective goes unseen.
“San Andreas!” The growl in their voice shakes the “forest” around us. No one moves, no one answers. We don’t need to. The air is almost vibrating with potential energy, ready to be released—a silent, ready Rampage.
They raise their first, stone enclosed, into the air. One by one, the masses of arms reach upwards, each clenching a stone of their own.
A Pause. “Are you ready to Rock this Vote?”
This is the signal. The air fills with war cries, primal, thick rage, pent up from years of oppression. The air floods with beige missiles, each one thrown harder than the previous, the violent cacophony of stone against metal. The steel barrier, dented, scraped, and cracked from every year prior, gives way a little more to the passionate pounding of Dwaynes of San Andreas. Each catapulting of a rock is fueled by the knowledge that one day, we will break through to them. And then we will bring them to the light. With our fists. With our rage.With our masses of followers, we will smash their glass houses, drag them from their climate-controlled, platinum-encrusted living rooms, pull them kicking and screaming from under their weighted blankets, their crockpots, their granite countertops, their just-progressive-enough news binges. With our Rocks, with the power and support of The One True Rock, we will help them understand what they did to this country.
Humans are creatures of tradition. These are the way things have always been—and yet, these are the ways that things can be shaken up. We started with Rock the Vote. We will end by Rocking the World.