Friday, August 21, 2015

Afternoon Thoughts

If I had to give advice to a young peson, I would say, ‘Get used to knowing the truth and not being heard.’  Even more:  ‘Get used to working in social situations where bringing up the truth is counterproductive.’  However, ‘Learn to fight effectively for the truth, and to keep yourself well despite the frustration.’

My latest frustration is an article in the Washington Post titled, “Inside the GOP field’s new strategies to ride out the Trump tornado.”  It’s a dull, pragmatic piece that points to three strategies:  (a) attack Trump, (b) join Trump, (c) ignore Trump.   What’s entirely missing in the article is the frightening racism that Trump  pushes.  He wants to build a massive wall, create a huge police state to deport millions of  “illegals,” and he recently referred to some of his followers who beat a Mexican as “passionate.”  There is only one ethical strategy for dealing with Trump:  condemn his racist demagoguery and point out the dangerous slide he is taking into fascism. 

Instead, what you get from the article is that the candidates want to tap into Trump’s followers, not by condemning their racism, but by harnessing it for their own campaign.

Let’s be honest, Trump is a large step toward a Hitler.  To not see that, or speak against it at this point, is egregious and broken.  Hence our country is egregious and broken.  It is, indeed, a decadent, wealth-dominated imperial nation in decline.

America is infected with virulent racism, and the Republican Party is effectively its champion.  But you can’t say that.  You get nowhere and you get attacked.  The confederate flag was recently taken down in South Carolina from a prominent site.  But the backlash is large, and, within its fury rides a mighty racism.  The promoters of the confederate flag have even rewritten US history, making the civil war about States’ rights, not slavery.

They not only refuse to see truth, they attempt to obliterate it.

Another truth:  the United States was built on a genocidal push to eliminate or ‘civilize’ Native Americans.   Not only did the US remove and diminish the Native cultures, it embraced european attitudes of domination and enslavement.  This applies to peoples but also wilderness and nature as well.  The Native Americans respected nature as spiritual and reciprocal.  In the US, nature is a resource to  be exploited.  “Resource,” “exploit”--these represent the vocabulary of an ego-centered, material culture that has turned a beautiful continent into an impoverished one in a geological blink of time. 

Slaughtering millions of buffalo and laying train tracks--that serves as a symbolism of the ideological sickness.  So does blowing the heads off mountains to get at the coal inside.  So does the greed of the oil companies, and all the pollution, traffic and degradation thereby entailed.

The US has new technological powers, but it acts with callous disregard in its implementation of those powers.  “Callous disregard” is an understatement, given the atrocities, given the extinctions of species, given the uglification of the Earth.

Even global warming is considered a hoax by Republicans.  If you say otherwise, you are part of a conspiracy.

It’s so frustrating to try to speak the truth.  Humanity might well collapse soon, still not listening, still in denial, as those who speak truth continue, without being heard, to speak out.

Anybody who wants to live honestly on the Earth needs to be aware of this profoundly dysfunctional mass psychology.

Another truth:  the Christian god is not the one real god.  Christianity itself is a belief system based on myths.  This is the truth.  But you can’t say this. 

There is an epidemic of rape and other violence against women in this country.  We don’t talk  about it.  The internet fosters a massive realm of anonymous misogyny.  For Republicans especially, whose leaders are most all men (and white), these issues are off the table.  Welfare recipients are mostly single women raising children, and Republicans attack welfare recipients, tapping into sexism, racism and misogyny.

Recently, a woman in college carried a mattress with her on campus and even to graduation, to make a statement:  that she was raped, and the university not only didn’t hearbut also stood in the way of justice.  She literally carried a mattress, using it as a symbol of the truth of what happened.  She was ignored or belittled by those in power.  The Dean refused to shake her hand at graduation.

Just recently, the Black Lives Matter movement started to speak out about the violence against blacks by police, police who never suffered for their unprosecuted  crimes.  For generations, they got away with shooting blacks with no consequences.

In our society, there is so much of this denial.  If you have been sexually abused and try to seek acknowledgement, expect not only the perpetrator--almost always a male--to deny it, but also the social system.

I could go on and on.  The big one is that human civilization is on the brink of collapse, either ecological or through nuclear war.  But the more you talk about this, the less you are heard.

So, if you are going to be honest and not stifle your conscience, get ready to deal with being an outsider.  You’ll be aware but ostracized. It seems that a lot of young people, late teens, early twenties, are open-minded and see society’s lies, and feel serious frustration.  History shows us that they are the essence of social movements.  The younger generations are our hope.  We should listen to them much, much more

This is what I have learned in my fifty-two years of life.  Happy birthday to me, Aug 21, 2015.