Wednesday, November 18, 2015



I don't know which dismays me more:  Last Friday night's events in Paris, or the thoroughly disgusting very public reaction of right-wing America.

I mourn with those in Paris who have lost loved ones. 

But, I think I mourn more profoundly for the loss of the country that, despite all her problems and upheavals, I once deeply loved.

Because, in the first few decades of my lifetime, though she was hampered by a checkered past, the United States of America honestly seemed to be on the path toward becoming some facsimile of what the founders hoped she could be.

Lurching out of the xenophobic, frankly racist and fear-riddled first half of the twentieth century, the next decades brought some real social progress: civil rights for blacks, equal rights for women, the peace movement...  I grew up during those decades.  That was the country I knew and loved: the one that was moving forward, eye on the prize.  We imagined a utopia, and we aimed ourselves toward it.  If the progress was only infinitesimal, it was progress. 

The thought that all that could go away...that every inch of progress we made could and would be battered and hamstrung; bombed, bad-mouthed and pistol-whipped into retreat...never entered my mind. 

I look at this country: at the absolute trash vying for the privilege of running for the highest office in the land;  at the us vs them, no compromise, "with us or against us" state of our federal government;  at the vile things everyday people will say and post and tweet, to and about anybody or anything;  at the atmosphere of hatred and greed and aggression and uncontrollable consumerism that has invaded every aspect of our lives...

And my heart...just...wails.

I honestly feel as if I have fallen through the looking glass.  I have no idea where I am.  This can NOT be America.

We didn't just lose our moral compass.  We threw it in the sewer and pissed on it.

I'm sure there will be those who will say, "If you don't like it, why don't you just leave?"

Actually,  I never had the opportunity to choose to leave my country. 

It left me first.


  1. I agree completely. It is disgusting, discouraging and impossible to fathom. We are seeing the absolute worst in people.... the fear, racism, protectionism, provincialism, and complete overreaction to the world's events. What is wrong with us? I am beginning to understand how the holocaust came about.

  2. This is a great post, and I share your despair. If I were younger, I would leave. Dunno where I'd go; I think probably Europe, although of course Europe is not without problems of it's own, but at least I'd be away from the endless guns and anger and violence that seems to be found everywhere in America today. But my children and grandchildren are here, and I'm 66, so I think I'm here for the duration.