In the early years of marriage, the store bought taco kit became a weekly staple. Old El Paso was the go-to, until Taco Bell came out with a kit that included a pack of Tropical Punch Kool-Aid:
Like a kid wanting a box of cereal for the toy inside, 20-something me bought these kits specifically for the Kool-Aid. I could have just bought the Kool-Aid for like 25 cents back then, but it seemed better this way. I’d mix it up merrily as Mrs. Richardson rolled her eyes.
It should come with a warning. It stained every pitcher we had. Somehow the red dye would permeate the plastic. If you got any on the carpet, you were done.
It cost us the security deposit on our Buies Creek apartment.
The partisan litmus test got out of control in 2022. For months, we’ve had every single candidate trying to out-red or out-blue the other.
Every day we get flyers from Val Applewhite featuring a picture of Donald Trump that tells us Kirk deViere is “not a real Democrat.” He is.
Every day I hear a radio ad claiming Bo Hines is “not a real Republican.” He is.
It’s absurd, and it’s not going to solve a single problem facing our country. But it gives us a quick sugar rush and makes us feel good, so we keep buying it.
The price we pay is an erosion of faith in our institutions and distrust in our fellow man. Good ideas and the compromise needed to implement them are stifled. There’s no room. Instead, millions are spent on ads convincing you to fight the other side with politically-pure partisan warriors.
In the end, we can’t all be right, all the time, but we keep drinking the Kool-Aid.
Then it stains who we are.