American elected officials are ideally supposed to listen to their constituents’ voices and reflect their public’s political desires. In any rudimentary government class, a citizen is taught to directly contact their representatives and congresspeople to share their positions on legislation; it is one’s first amendment rights, of course, and the best way to bolster democracy is to exercise those rights by sending letters, emails and phone calls.
Of course, once a person has actually contacted their senators or representatives, the response — if there is one — is often dull and impersonal, usually stating something vague about their own beliefs and how dedicated they are to their constituents.
Once reality sets in, people tend to realize their voice does not actually matter that much to an old man incumbent, and they’re left demoralized in a fracturing political system. Ultimately, the best way to make sure an elected official hears the public’s gripes is through the reliable methodology of psychic damage.
Here are our top five tips and tricks to getting your voice loud and clear.
1. Phone calls — but menacingly boring
Usually, if you call the office of a politician, you may receive a lowly secretary or an automatic voice message. Don’t leave the typical message where you list out your bullshit stance on some stupid bill coming up, but instead just rave about your sister’s upcoming wedding and the horribly crafted dinner menu. Plums? Beets? Tell that senator how you feel about the disjunction of these two foods.
2. Become a gay-coded villain
There’s nothing more congresspeople hate more than a devilishly flamboyant antagonist. Creep around their office and say ominous things, comment on the bad omen of the incoming storm clouds or make a vague prophetic statement on the darkness to come with an evil jingling laugh. Rouse two jovial simpletons to become your lackeys; you will dance and sing in an irresistible music number as they clap brainlessly about. Allow yourself to maniacally giggle. This world is your oyster now, but please don’t be heteronormative about it.
3. A copy of a photo of their son Jedidiah on his favorite sled
“I love this photo of Jed,” you will write with red sharpie. You weren’t supposed to know about Jedidiah — no one was. He was locked away to the attic years ago after he became interested in video game streaming.
4. Mail a box of tampons (NOTE: only works with male and/or conservative female representatives)
Remind them of their worst nightmare: the human vagina.
5. Fuck their wife
You’ve seen her photographed next to him. The flashes of cameras capture her uncomfortable countenance, mouth taut and eyes lowered. Her hand tentatively dangles near his — an open invitation, a hopeful one — but it is ignored in favor of him perfecting his winning smile for his audience. Frankly, showing this poor, haggard woman a night of passionate, all-consuming lovemaking would be the most selfless act on this list.
It can start simple. Throw her a compliment about the jewels lazily draped upon her delicate neck, and mention the way it brings out the sparkle of her eyes (it is a diminished sheen, you remember, but when you tell her this, you will see something flicker in her, something that awakens). Ask her about her hobbies. Nod and listen.
She can’t remember the last time anyone paid so much interest in her, she jokes, but you know the vulnerability underneath her tone.
You invite her over. She compliments your tasteful décor of medieval weaponry and says something lighthearted about how she could tell you would enjoy the scimitar, but there is an underlying nervousness. She hasn’t had someone make her dinner in a long time — are those dinosaur chicken nuggets? (They’re the vegetarian kind, but you’ll let it slide.)
After dinner, she hands you her dish, and your fingers brush against hers, playful and explorative. She gasps from the touch. Let her have the support she never got from him.
Tomorrow, her peaceful sleeping form will lie next to you, but it will be time to move on; after all, this country is full of ignored wives of congressman, and you’re just one person.