“What a sad era when it is easier
to smash an atom than a prejudice.”
― Albert Einstein
The sorrow I feel in my very being is so profound I find myself unable to do much other than sit and crochet. It helps to keep me from crying when I crochet but not much more than that. I’ve been thinking about how could I possibly write a blog post that would be meaningful in the light of the voice of our President who spews hate and bigotry.
“Those who will not reason, are bigots,
those who cannot, are fools,
and those who dare not, are slaves.”
― George Gordon Byron
Since I have no desire to be a slave and abhor the possibility that my ancestors owned people and called them slaves I was really struggling with it all. A friend of my daughter Lorien who became a friend of mine wrote really stirring words this morning.
“In this country American means white.
Everybody else has to hyphenate.”
― Toni Morrison
So, with her permission, I’m sharing the words of Theresa Santiago Adams in the hopes that you will be moved as I was to consider this point of view and that indeed ideas can become effective weapons for good if we use them.
“Books and ideas are the most effective weapons
against intolerance and ignorance.”
― Lyndon B. Johnson
“I have been uncharacteristically silent the last few days since the tradgedy in Virginia. I think because I have been trying to wrap my brain around what happened. And why. And how.
For the last 8 months I have been telling myself that this is not the country I love. Not the country I grew up in. But it is, isn’t it? Racism has always been here. Hate has always been here. So why do I feel so betrayed by and out of place in my own country?
And I realized, I do not feel betrayed by the Nazi’s. I am disgusted by them. Horrified by their actions. But they have always been true to who they are. No, I feel betrayed by my own kind. By the so called Progressives. Why? Because this, all of this is our fault.
It is our fault because we were so focused on Hillary or Bernie that we failed to come together for the greater good. We failed to see what was right in front of us. During the campaign, 45 told us who he is. He shouted it proudly. He displayed his ignorance and bigotry and racism like peacock feathers. So proud of the hate and violence he incited. And still we dismissed it as a joke. Dismissed him as a joke.
Millions of voters stayed home. A great many of them in protest because the person they wanted did not win the ticket. So while they/we all saw and heard what was happening, we failed to stop it. All it would have taken was a vote. Your vote. I say “your” because I voted for Her. Was she my first choice? Not necessarily. But she won the nomination. And it was my responsibility as a citizen of this country to vote for the person who was NOT a racist, facist, white supremacist piece of shit.
The fact that so many of my fellow citizens did not take that responsibility seriously is why I feel betrayed. We cannot blame the Republicans. They came together. We did not.
So while many posts call out the Rep’s saying “you own this”. It’s actually us, the Liberals, the Progressives that own this.
Many of you behaved like selfish, spoiled, stuck up children and when you didn’t get your way, you pouted. Don’t get me wrong, the Rep party is full of racist, misogynistic, Nazi fucks. But they have never hidden who they are or what they believe. We as Liberals wanted to be “nice” and not call names or rock the boat. Go high when they go low. Look what they got us.
So I hope that all of the events of the last 8 months, the Nazi rallys, the hate crimes, the cop shootings of black men, the terrorist acts, the attempted dimanteling of our democratic system; I hope all of it has been a wake up call to you. And the next time you have the opportunity to do something about it, you will get up off your ass, pull on your big boy/girl pants, suck it up and do what is right for the greater good. Because if you don’t, you cannot call yourself an American.
I will grant you that some of these events would have happened regardless of who won the election. But they would have been few. And they would have been condemned. Instead, they have been held up as the standard to which 45 aspires. Hate and violence in his name. With his approval and encouragement.
Every time something like the Virginia murder, yes murder, happens, it chips away a little more of my soul. I find it harder to see the good in people. And with every hate filled tweet, Nazi rally, hate crime or act of cowardice and injustice, it puts one more nail in the coffin of my time here in the US. Never in a million years did I think I would leave the borders of my beloved country for more than a few days or weeks at a time. Now, I’m making plans to retire and spend the second half of my life in another country. Because I can’t bear the weight of what’s happening. I can’t watch my country get dimanteled and devoured. My time here is nearing an end. And it makes me weep.”
“All our silences in the face of racist assault
are acts of complicity.”
― bell hooks,
Thank you Theresa Santiago Adams for your amazing words. I hope every reader has a feeling of the need to stand up for what is right for our country so none of us has to leave in order to not be devoured by the hatred and bigotry.
“Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry,
but by demonstrating that
all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die,
it can introduce the idea that if we
try and understand each other,
we may even become friends.”
― Maya Angelou,