by Mike Meyer
Americans now live in a miasma of fear and hatred. While its origins go back years, this noxious cloud was thin enough to be ignored until the arrival of Donald Trump on the national scene as something other than a joke.
Those origins were clearly linked to self hatred and the loss of a future. Our future was always a balloon of hope that buoyed America over ugliness and hard times. Things were wrong and not being made right but there was, still, our buoyant hope that kept us above despair.
The slow and fitful struggle with racism that limns all of American history and sufuses it with darkness was being erased, we thought, until Reagan made it ok again for whites to hate. It was too good a tool for power and the future be damned.
The darkness grew but the future was still there for most. No one wanted to think about the violent brutality of the race riots and city ghetto wars. Funny how that simply ended with victory declared by the suburban, white people who didn’t live there. Bringing it to mind again would question the victory so it couldn’t be remembered. Anything else but that.
Obama re-inflated the balloon of hope but nothing else changed. He pretended that it was really ok and made the economy work the way it should but it was the wrong design. It could only make the situation worse and make the people who had rediscovered the value of hate in order to steal the our money the big winners. He tried to make it work but could only make it grow in its distorted and vicious capitalist form. Only the rich can have what they need. But do we need them?
Trump destroyed the hope and slaughtered the future and the air turned foul and ugly. People began to wear masks to hide their emotions. Hatred and ignorance were the only things that could be shouted. Hope was crushed and utterly destroyed. Children abused and imprisoned, ugliness raised for all to admire. We are an ugly and hateful people who have mistaken dominance for power and we are proud of it. Yes we are. But only some.
The rest of us, the majority who tried but somehow lost, have come to realize how much is gone and how little hope is left. Hope for America was not limitless and we, somehow, used it up. Always you realize the value of conservation when the last of it is gone. We should have kept a little of that as seed. Too bad. Trump shouts for his goons. Is that all we have?
But now it’s worse. The autumn of ’18 when we learned there are only ten years left to make the changes to keep the life we have for the whole planet. That all of our families had spent many generations developing. The good life that was supposed to trickle down or, better, raise us up. But that’s mine, not yours, Trump says. Lock ’em up!
The irony of claiming freedom as a goal to lose it to a fool. Now we are the fools. We must give much more of our freedom up to keep some future freedom for ourselves and our children. We don’t even know how much there will be. And that applies to all of us everywhere on this rock of a world. How the hell are we going to do that?
First we need to get rid of the fool who tricked the frightened and greedy. And then teach some honesty to those that believed they could have by stealing it from others with no thought for anyone but themselves. Those people are our neighbors and cousins so it’s our job to take their dangerous toys away. And teach them that we all need to share now or we are all going to really lose.
Funny how our childhood just ended. It’s not by choice. But it’s up to us to change for all.