p style=”text-align:justify”>The first two lines of the opening stanza of my favorite poem read, “If you can keep your head when all about you, Are losing theirs and blaming it on you…” –Rudyard Kipling.
One of the gifts of literature and poetry is confirming that you are not alone or insane. When learned people reach a point of feeling repelled and repulsed, they survive by sharing their feelings. Most people remember the Selma to Montgomery marches for its’ violence against peaceful protestors attempting to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge. I remember it because, on the third try, Dr. King triumphantly made it to the seat of Alabama’s discrimination, the state capital in Montgomery. The words of his speech are especially significant and apropos for the racist who occupies the White House today. For Trump supporters who have convinced themselves that racism, xenophobia, hate, and fear does not drive his policies, I suggest you read the words of Dr. King:
If it may be said of the slavery era that the white man took the world and gave the Negro Jesus, then it may be said of the Reconstruction era that the southern aristocracy took the world and gave the poor white man Jim Crow. (Yes, sir) He gave him Jim Crow. (Uh-huh) And when his wrinkled stomach cried out for the food that his empty pockets could not provide, (Yes, sir) he ate Jim Crow, a psychological bird that told him that no matter how bad off he was, at least he was a white man, better than the black man. (Right sir) And he ate Jim Crow. (Uh-huh) And when his undernourished children cried out for the necessities that his low wages could not provide, he showed them the Jim Crow signs on the buses and in the stores, on the streets and in the public buildings. (Yes, sir) And his children, too, learned to feed upon Jim Crow, (Speak) their last outpost of psychological oblivion. (Yes, sir)
If I may be so presumptuous as to add a new line to the wise words of Dr. King, they would be; Beware of the man who shouts, “build the wall.” President Trump has proven over and over again his unwillingness to govern all the people. “What have you got to lose?” That question was asked again and again in front of overwhelmingly white rally audiences to mock fairness, never was it asked in front of a predominantly black audience that could have given an honest answer. Just as study after study has revealed that so-called “economic anxiety” was really a hood, hiding the faces of those who want to make America White Again, as is locking up and separating families of brown and black immigrants, racial animus looks for an excuse.
The common link, beside the obvious, within all these shameful parts of American history, is that when each of these groups began to excel, new laws, increased violence, and racial hatred escalated. Donald Trump is just an extension of history and every one of his supporters is complicit. There is not a Supreme Court Judge or tax decrease that justifies injustice, winks at immorality, or forgives its results.
Vote in 2020 for Change.