It is undeniable that we live in a country of devastatingly cruel endings, not of happy ones. They lurk around the corner, peer in through our windows, seep into our homes, and reach across the globe. Our elected representatives deliver them on an almost daily basis.
Failure to acknowledge our national shame will ultimately corrupt all of us. A nation of people that reflexively defends the indefensible from its past becomes sociopathic.
There are rhetorical perils to basing an essay or story on a song that one loves dearly. First, you’re never going to reflect the brilliance or compassion or beauty or whatever it is that touches you. The best you can hope for is sharing a story of your own that the song has some resonance…
If we don’t publicly and loudly acknowledge that the Obama administration was a hollow, symbolic victory followed by eight years of neoliberal clusterfuckery that did almost nothing for the poor, the working class, the middle class and minorities – yes, minorities – then we are likely to keep fighting the zombie Centrists that are Joe Biden, Kamala Harris and Pete Fucking Buttigieg for far too long.
Don’t forget these things, ever. Like all other significant aspects of our country’s history, they are part of your heritage. Not shying away from them is essential. We have to learn from them.
If we accomplish one thing swiftly due to the leftward swing in public opinion after Charlottesville and Trump’s immoral “many sides” comments, shouldn’t we take advantage of the wind at our backs?
I enthusiastically encourage others to peruse, edit and add to this list. I merely wanted to put some names and events out there so that we could see just how many great Americans deserve to be remembered for their acts of courage and love, and for their humanity against overwhelming odds.
America, let me tell you, you are the bastard child of white European colonialism, technical advantages and the violent rape and murder of two other cultures, one red, one black.
If you really, really want to put an end to racism in the United States, in your city, in your neighborhood, let’s all admit that there is a practical way to go about it. It isn’t a disconcerting mystery. It’s not something we need to agonize over for years. We can do it now.
In fact, if you look at the entire Republican/Neoliberal Democrat policy platforms, you will find that they are almost entirely about diminishing the humanity of and reducing the economic and civic power of workers below the CEO and Ownership level.
You have to think, “Somebody might yell at me, insult me, or far worse.”