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 I am sickened by what I've seen and read over the last ten days. What have we spent most of our lives working toward, if not equality in this country, for the last two hundred and fifty years? We were founded as a nation to eliminate the class system prevalent in Europe, to promote freedom of and from religion, under the premise that ALL men are created equal.
 It took almost one hundred years after this declaration to eliminate slavery, another hundred to write that equality between races into our Constitution, and now, fifty years after that, we are watching the ugliness of discrimination once again rear up its rotten and appalling head virtually live in our living rooms. I am horrified, outraged, and nauseated by the events we've been subjected to by the repressive and aggressive police tactics and their military mindset of us vs. them; the disinformation  and propaganda campaign by many in the media of brandishing a young person as not deserving of life; and a good-ol-boy network of town, county and state government who are operating under the  philosophy that they've used for decades of pretending to care about these issues to conceal their despicable racism.
   We are better than this. A melting pot by design, we were formed to become one out of many; a veritable amalgamation that has created some of the greatest thinkers, inventors, writers, artists, humanitarians, etc., that the world has ever known.
   We've striven to be Number One throughout the world, and lately, lately we've fallen far short. The last few decades have created something completely different than what our Founding Fathers envisioned when they signed that piece of paper calling for our ancestors freedom from the tyranny and repression of a foreign government. We've been lied to, bullied, and coerced into believing that this is how it should be, that there will always be this division, that it's us vs. them.
   We've had the lie of the "welfare queen" fed to us so long that one in three Americans believe that this phantom actually exists, and we make excuses for those who want to be so cruel as to starve and denigrate the poor to even more extreme circumstances. We allow our government to harass and penalize the less fortunate while they give more and more money to people who don't need it and will never be able to spend the wealth they already have. We have learned to care for those thousands of miles away and to ignore those in our own neighborhoods.
   As our  major media has been taken over and controlled by the few who are of the one percent, we've been told to fear anyone of a different color, a different political outlook, a different lifestyle, and a different income bracket. We're made afraid by not only what the media shows us, but also what they censor. The propaganda machine spews a daily dose of fear and hatred to the masses who've been repeatedly told not to think for themselves because it causes problems for the status quo. We've been programmed to think only of ourselves and those close to us, to harbor doubt and dread of anyone outside our own circle.
   Our intimate lives are routinely watched, recorded, and housed in databanks to be perused by those who want to control the masses. We allowed our rights to privacy to be written away in a moment of fear and now find ourselves naked before those who seek to destroy all that is good in us.
   We are better than this. We are better than tear gas and rubber bullets, better than the propaganda, better than the insensitive words and the lack of compassion. Our lives and our country mean more than a militarized police force, more than political division, more than us vs. them. What we stand for is not what I see when I turn on my television.

We are better than this.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (5+ / 0-)

    Life... is like a grapefruit. It's orange and squishy, and has a few pips in it, and some folks have half a one for breakfast. -Douglas Adams

    by mahytabel on Tue Aug 19, 2014 at 07:48:53 PM PDT

  •  Are we? (3+ / 0-)

    "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

    by raptavio on Tue Aug 19, 2014 at 07:53:20 PM PDT

    •  I can't live in denial (3+ / 0-)

      and pretend that we are.

      I'm going back and looking up news articles reading quotes about what various scared and resentful white people said during the LA Riots.

      A lot of the cringeworthy bits are almost exactly the same.

      I can't blame propaganda or media control or divisive politics.

      I think a lot of people who went from overtly racist to being covertly racist, because the civil rights gains made being overtly racist no longer okay, have put a kind of patina of wishful thinking on America's progress.

      Racism behind a smile and saying all the right things in mixed company isn't America proudly embracing the notion of a melting pot.

      This is the age of the Dogwhistle busting up against forces that are brazenly trying to bring being overtly bigoted back into the mainstream. Couching it in terms of being tolerant. Like you aren't being truly intolerant if being tolerant is not also being tolerant and accepting of bigots.  

      I'm betting if things that were said after the Rodney King verdict was released and the streets erupted were mixed up with things that were said a few days ago about Ferguson, with no attribution, it would be hard to say "this was then and this was Ferguson on Friday".

      RW talk radio talking points like "race hustler" and "grievance industry". Animals. "The Blacks" want free stuff. Let them burn their whole neighborhood down if they want to.

      I can't mistake demographic changes making America more diverse numerically with white America being more open-minded and willing to embrace minority majority.

      I think Ferguson is something that has to be ripping a lot of self-deceptive scales from a lot of eyes about the myths about how much we have advanced and evolved as a nation.

         

      "Real journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations." -George Orwell

      by LeftHandedMan on Tue Aug 19, 2014 at 08:18:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yeah, it's kinda hard to pretend we're better than (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OooSillyMe

      what we are.

      Too much striving to be Number One, not enough effort to just be decent.

      "Trust me... I've been right before." ~ Tea party patriot

      by Calvino Partigiani on Tue Aug 19, 2014 at 08:38:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  We SHOULD be better than this (5+ / 0-)

    I think that's what you are saying. We've got to drop the pretension "that this is the greatest country in the history of mankind" That arrogance leads to all manner of mistakes and a distorted national identity.

  •  We should be but it is pretty obvious that we (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calvino Partigiani

    aren't........and that should frighten us all........

  •  Yes, I believe we should be, but (0+ / 0-)

     I also believe we are better. If you talk to individuals, from both sides of the political spectrum, one on one they say how shocked and appalled they are by all of this. It is only when they surround themselves with others that they change their tune and begin to sing that racist song we know so well.
      I'm old enough to vividly remember the last few years of the 60's and the early 70's. I remember the horrifying spectacle of police using fire hoses to control crowds of marchers, the beatings with police batons, the blatant racists screaming their obscenities, all of it playing out on my parents television after dinner every night for years. In my life I've seen far too many instances of police brutality, the hatred of anyone different, the fear that they might have to give up their loathing and disgust for anything unlike themselves.
        Over the last few decades, as the right wing attempted to dehumanize the majority of us, to create a country of automatons that tow the party line, I've seen many stand up and tell them NO.
    I had hoped there were more of us, the human, the compassionate, the empathetic, that would stand up to this and shout NO! More that would see this for what it is, the downgrading of human life to a simple equation of us vs. them.

    I had hoped the majority, for we ARE the majority, would finally put its collective foot down and say ENOUGH! We won't stand for this anymore! And I still hope that this playing out on our televisions every night after dinner, like it did fifty years ago (I am haunted by the similarities between then and now), will again make the younger generation willing to create change.

    We cannot, as a nation, as human beings, continue down this path of killing off our young men and women, our brightest lights for a better future, all in the name of ignorance and bigotry.

    Life... is like a grapefruit. It's orange and squishy, and has a few pips in it, and some folks have half a one for breakfast. -Douglas Adams

    by mahytabel on Wed Aug 20, 2014 at 10:08:32 AM PDT

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