Sometimes I feel like I am in one of those novels like FARENHEIT 451, where I am one of those proud citizens of one of the world’s best states–suddenly having to confront the evidences that it is not. Comes the waking, the gradually realizing that in fact it is one of the ugliest, most abusive, least honorable of states… That its promises are lies, its ideals are hiding terrible truths, that its justifications are disingenuous, and ultimately that its actual effect on the rest of the world and its own citizens is pernicious. That it’s greatest potentials are held back unrealized, unrealizable, by the sludge in which it stands.
All that is happening now in the bright light of day has always gone on, and all the good things–opportunities, wealth in sufficiency, benefits of technology– have been only for a select few. Being one of those few, I didn’t see it so clearly before, always thought that the suggestions of it as aberrations from the norm. I believed that what was true for me was true for most.
The current social and moral crisis is not Trump’s doing, he is the product of it: The champion of the absolute worst of what America is. Trump is simply the mirror of America’s own, long darkness that has gone so long shoved back into closets and cellars, has for so long been laughed off or ignored in the light of better things… That has finally floated to the surface and demanded attention.
The sludge we stand in is the composite of our weaknesses unaddressed, our debts unpaid, our problems minimized and ignored. But, as stories will have it, Truth will out! What is real will always, eventually, outlast and outmaneuver the glamours, the distractions, the glib contrivances we use to evade the unpleasant and inconvenient. “Reality is that which, when you ignore it, doesn’t go away.”
These kinds of stories seem always to resolve in either annihilation of the individual and national soul, or in revolution. It depends on the courage of the participants and the unwillingness to be devoured by a machine.
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