as long as good men fail to act


I came to realize a couple days ago that I am working through the 5 stages of grief.  I have been grieving for the death of a country that … perhaps… never existed at all.  I really thought that this was a nation of greater ideals than the last year has proven to be the case.

The idiocy of 60 some million people voting for a man who had demonstrated in numerous ways that he was despicable was bad enough.  I don’t know how much more he could have done to demonstrate how completely inappropriate he was as a leader of the U.S. than he had already done during his first 70 years on this planet.

But what has amazed and saddened, and grieved me the more has been the willingness of other men and women to stand by and applaud him all in the name of gaining more power for themselves.  Any illusions I might have had about the noble words on paper that are to be found on the Constitution, or the Declaration of Independence, or many of the well reasoned and eloquent speeches given by previous presidents and congress people have been dashed.  The U.S. was a good idea. But in the working out of it we seem to have killed it.  Congress doesn’t work.  The man in the White House is an embarrassment to the nation.  And the population is normalizing obscene behavior as acceptable.  If that’s not something to grieve over, I don’t know what is.

It’s a simple message that these young men have to share and they will ultimately overcome — I have no doubt.

I have recently cut back my presence on Facebook. There’s not much sense in feeding the fury of a few. There is so much garbage out there, and so many people complaining about what is happening without taking any action. The world doesn’t need more complainers. It needs more people willing to stand up and act.

White supremacists are an abomination — let’s be clear. Racial hatred and bigotry and discrimination have been around a long, long, long time.  U.S. society has tolerated hatred and bigotry, we have harbored it in our veneration of Civil War imagery and ideals. We glorify violence in our entertainment and our media. As a culture we are to blame for not putting the KKK, and white supremacy, and all the other hate mongers out of our society. They have no place in this world — they never had a place in this world. Their existence has always been tolerated by those who knew better but were hesitant to act, and hesitant to take a stand. 

I fear that by men and women in power failing to take action they are in fact cocking the gun of future violence. We forget that historically when ideals truly become abominable it is predictable that masses of people will arise and tear down the emblems of tyranny and hatred. We saw statues of Lenin and Stalin torn down. We saw the wall in Berlin torn down. During the Arab Spring the same things happened. When people are truly offended by their oppressors there is no stopping them. Those who hope to cling to their privilege have something to fear — they can see the end of their privilege and that ought to chill them to the bone. But they will not win.

Clearly, we in this country are still struggling to develop that degree of disgust; that level of disapproval;  the waters of fury are building and one day will overflow like a flood. But it’s a day that is coming and those who think they can reverse the course of history to what we were in the 1960’s are mistaken. Those who think they can preserve their status as privileged, have a sad day of reckoning ahead of them. Sad for them, but others will rejoice that finally their yoke has been overthrown.

You cannot turn back the tide of time. The world is witnessing and judging whether the U.S. really stands for the things it talks about or whether our 2 centuries of bragging about our values and ideals are real, or just a lot of hot air. In part this is about the man in the White House — but it is about so much more… so much more…

We face so many dire situations in the world; and we are wasting so much time on partisan bickering all because we have elected to the highest position in the land someone who is unfit for any office.  While millions are displaced, millions more starve, we throw verbal stones across the North Korean border flirting with Nuclear catastrophe.  Species are disappearing from the planet and we twiddle our thumbs. Millions live in poverty and we pretend it isn’t happening.  In this country we imprison the poor and we pardon the rich.  We shoot men of color for doing very little and when White Supremacists march down the street behaving worse not a shot is fired.  Violence by the police would be easier to understand if it was consistent, but the fact that it is not ought to be speaking volumes to those of us who wear no uniform — but it seems to fall on deaf ears.

These are troubling times.

But we aren’t going to improve them so long as good men fail to act.

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4 thoughts on “as long as good men fail to act

  1. “The world doesn’t need more complainers. It needs more people willing to stand up and act.”

    To write, describe the meaning, and for ledgers far beyond the physical act produces the medium. In some, this is mediocre due to the time consuming efforts to read and produce a writing formed. The foundation of knowledge abridged develops the method extending that mutual appreciation with the self. Thank you for your insights.

    Descartes confidence established to function in the “real world” (Part III):
    1. Obey laws & customs of country, regulating my conduct consenting to most judicious
    2. Firm and resolute in my actions as I was able
    3. Self rather fortune, change desires rather ordering the world, and nothing is absolute

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  2. We have only ourselves to blame for the current political landscape. Years of consumerism, chasing the dollar, allowing people in office to do anything they wanted. Bill Clinton’s actions alone should have tarnished his reputation so badly he should have never had any public life after his presidency.
    Are his actions any less disgusting than our current president? So many are up in arms about this current president, they have such short memories.
    Millions of Baby boomers and their oldest son’s and daughters have watched their jobs and standard of living deteriorate while the cultural elite have made someone like Bill Clinton a Rock star.
    Prejudice while it can be learned is also basically a part of human behavior, and it’s fueled by Religion.

    I am just as much to blame. I doubt that I ever voted until I reached the age of 40. During this time the current political leaders were honing their skills of deception, and theft.
    We let it get this way, and people were so hungry for any change they drank whoever would supply the Kool aid.

    Donald Trump asked a group of African Americans if they thought he could do any worse than Barrack Obama did for them. I guess that sums it all up.
    One of the worst results of Trump’s presidency is the deteriorating of journalistic credibility. The publications I relied on for Journalistic integrity have let their hatred of Trump unleash their deep seated political leanings color facts and contact.

    Shame on you Washington Post, New York Times, and many others!

    Sorry to carry on, but to many people have taken their eye off the ball.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dave,

      I mostly agree.

      Not only should Clinton’s actions have tarnished his reputation, that the Democratic party thought Hillary would be immune to the carry-over from Bill astounds me. Hubris is a very human trait and I think that people in power tend to fall into it’s grip more easily/quickly than others.

      We have been playing the low road in American politics for a few decades now. The more recent events which have put corporate money into the political formula has only exacerbated the situation and I have no idea if any kind of high road is even possible nowadays. One keeps hoping that at some point, some people of character and honor will step up and say, “thus far and no further.” But power is a funny thing and no one with it ever seems to want to give it up.

      Clearly there was, and probably still is, a part of this country that wants real change. Getting to a form of real change that will benefit the citizens of this country instead of the 1% isn’t going to be easy as long as the 1% can influence legislators by simply buying them off. The average politician spends upwards of 5 hours a day fundraising. When the system has gotten to that point any pretense of legislators having TIME to devote to governance is absurd.

      Dave, the media are always out for blood. You must have forgotten the hateful and bigoted stories that were run about Obama. Sure, you are seeing a hatred for Trump in the last year or more, just as you saw a hatred for Obama for 8+ years. The media exist to sell advertising and nothing sells advertising as well as gossip and hate mongering.

      That said, and allowing for the fact that ALL politicians lie — we have not seen — as a nation — a leader who has such a loose grip on verity perhaps ever. And expecting a man to “fix” a broken nation who hasn’t been able to stay out of bankruptcy court and who’s method of making money has been to sue people into submission doesn’t seem very far-sighted. Donald hasn’t done anything in his life that I can see that has been far-sighted. And he doesn’t build for the future — he’s in the naming rights business letting others take the construction risks most of the time.

      He’s a man who cannot keep from shooting himself in the foot when he opens his mouth (or unleashes his twitter finger). Why? Because he is self-absorbed. He doesn’t care about the country. He cares about himself.

      >

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Allow this Canadian to weigh in – America is not a democracy, democracy reflects the will of all people regardless of faith, lack thereof, sexual orientation, gender and race.Americans cling to illusions of democratic excellence, perpetuate myths of the American dream and proclaim America greatest nation in the world because its all they know.By virtue of superior weaponry, indiscriminate indigenous genocide, slavery, infinite natural resources and staggering magnitude of unclaimed real estate for the taking – the American dream was born of exploitation, indentured immigrants, share croppers, Chinese railroad workers and company stores. The American dream is a carrot, constitutional freedom an arbitrary concept, civil rights a nagging abomination.

    America isn’t a great nation, greatness scoffs at chest thumping protestations of superiority, The U.S. constitution doesn’t make America great, it guarantees hypothetical freedoms oblivious to civil rights.

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