after spending well over an hour last night cleaning the pool, i topped up my plastic glass of wine and floated for a bit in the cicada-filled darkness of my suburban white privilege. i reflected on how facebook (or twitter) activism is the one way of feeling less powerless in the face of all the ugliness, but how useless it ultimately is because it merely hollers into the echo chamber of like-mindedness, changing nothing. then again, if not that, then what? what do i do? where do i march? the dallas shooting last night showed an ugly alternative to inaction - apparently the angry white man in this case was angry at white people and especially white cops. hey, i get it, but his choice of response was... well, what can you say about discharging semi-automatic firearms into a gathering of people? (oh, i know! you can call it the fucking second amendment in action!)
this morning i listened to NPR in the car and the conversation, as always after these almost daily occurrences down here, turned to the age old question: "what do we do about this?" within seconds i found myself flailing madly at the radio, swearing, and utterly appalled - and the NPR is as "my people" as it gets in the US media! "what do we do about this?" SERIOUSLY?!?!
i found myself imagining a country in which people are encouraged to consume candy in vast quantities. it's a badge of honour to walk around with a lollipop or caramels or taffy; bags of candy are everywhere, readily available and much beloved. but, lo and behold, there is (and has been for some time) a massive epidemic of tooth decay! people wring their hands, offer prayers, hold vigils, blame those who don't floss, but never once for a second consider removing the candy from the equation because the status quo is a sacred thing. this, for a canadian, is what the situation looks like. i sit on the sidelines and wonder how it is possible that this is even a question any more.
what do we do about this? seriously, america? i dunno, perhaps if you demanded to buy your soul back from the NRA; perhaps if you took your head out of your ass long enough to notice the rest of the world; perhaps if you stopped venerating the founding fathers as if they were prescient political gods whose creation, the constitution, was a document of biblical immutability; perhaps if you examined the second amendment within its historical context; and maybe, just maybe, if you stopped hollering about your exceptionalism and how great you are and paid attention to the bigger picture, then maybe you could become the kick-ass place you have the potential to be.
until that happens, i'm so done with you. this fling is over. and if you don't cease and desist your violent ways, i may yet take out a restraining order against you. don't call me.
and then i see something like this and i literally weep because most of you are good people who don't want this shit at all, and i don't know who to be angry at anymore.