Tuesday, June 19, 2018

This IS Our Country

Just two short days after celebrating our dads and the great jobs that they do, I was surfing the inter webs, getting bombarded with images and audio of the family separation monstrosity that is taking place in border cities. I have come across several SHOUTS of: 
"WTF, this is NOT our country." 
"How can ANYONE think that this is ok?" 
"OMG, these babies."
"What kind of monsters would do something like this?"

Uh, the United States would. Duh. Last month I was watching Anderson Cooper on CNN. Anderson Cooper- yum AND he is super QUICK to call out the outright lies the citizens are being told. And I am thankful. Anyway- I was watching Anderson Cooper and the New York Times columnist Charles Blow was on a panel. What he said that night has stayed with me. When asked about whatever stupid scandal was going on, Mr. Blow simply said "Stop being astonished." Man, if that ain't a message. 

I have wanted to post about the family separation policy of the current administration for a week or so, but I waited until TODAY to post this. Why, you ask? Today is Juneteenth. On this date in 1865, a full 30 months after the effective date of the Emancipation Proclamation, the abolition of slavery was announced in the state of Texas. Two and a half years late. Stop being astonished. 

Since the inception of this country people have been brought to this land against their will. The founders of this country came here with NOTHING and stole land and resources from the indigenous people. Stop being astonished. 

Slave owners routinely raped their slaves, spawning offspring that were light enough to work in the house, but not white enough to be allowed to play with their half siblings. Stop being astonished. 

Families were ROUTINELY obliterated at slave auctions, with babies being ripped from the caring arms of their mothers; husbands being taken away from their wives; siblings left crying while they head to plantations in opposite directions. Stop being astonished. 

Slavery. The Trail of Tears. The Internment Camps for Japanese American citizens. The Muslim Ban. The poor response for Hurricane Katrina. The absolutely useless response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. Stop.Being.Astonished.

What we are seeing right now has happened before. This administration is participating in tried and true tactics. This approach has been proven effective. The scheme is: once the family dynamic is broken, taking what you want is easy. We all know the ploy. So now, what are you going to do? The time of being astonished is over. The highest levels of our government are committing human rights atrocities... while we sit back in our air conditioned homes talking about "OMG, I cannot believe that they are putting babies in cages." But they are. This IS who we are-- this is who we have been from the very start of our country. Now we have to decide if this is who we will remain.



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