On rage and helpfulness. Or, of course women are furious.

by renegademama

A few days ago, I sat at my desk reading two articles that outlined in detail Harvey Weinstein’s harassment, assault, and intimidation of women.

As I read about the way he threatened and assaulted women – placing them in the position of giving him what he wanted or facing his wrath – which could (or would) essentially ruin their careers, I began thinking of my own run-ins with men who believed their physical or positional power allowed them to sexually threaten, touch, or intimidate me.

I thought all the way back to the neighbor boys in grade school who pulled some shit when my mother wasn’t home, and the bra-snapping in junior high, and the older cousin who stuck his hand down my shirt while I was sleeping. It was a family sleepover. I woke to his hand on my right breast and him looking at me, silently, like, “What?” Stunned, I didn’t say a word. He removed it eventually.

I hated myself for not yelling. I was ashamed and humiliated. I assumed I had done something terribly wrong to make him think he could do that to me. I never mentioned it.

I thought about the boss in the restaurant where I worked as a busser at age 16, the boss who told me there was “one way I wouldn’t lose my job,” pressing his erect dick against my thigh as I stood pinned against the kitchen wall. I wrote about that here.

I thought about the boss I had in college who told me one day that he thought “it would be a really good idea if we had sex,” and I realized he may fire me if I didn’t fuck him. I didn’t. I began looking immediately for a new job.

I thought about the man who stuck his hand up my skirt as I sat at a bar stool. I thought about the two men who tried to rape me on two occasions, and my narrow escapes, and I thought about the strangers who took my hand and placed it on their penises more times than I can count.

I thought about all that, and how we elected a man who bragged about this exact type of assault and I got fucking angry.

I shared this post on my Facebook page and wrote these words: “#HarveyWeinstein, fuck you, and our pussy-grabbing president, and everyone defending the sexism of either of you. May you walk into the fire of a million women sick of your shit.”

I didn’t think about it. I just posted it, in anger. And then, I began receiving the standard disgusting comments one expects when one states such things publicly, but a couple of comments indicated that my anger was “not helpful.” And that got me thinking.

First of all, I’m nobody’s fucking life coach.

If I ever indicated that I’m here to guide spiritual development, well, I didn’t, because that would be delusional. I am a fucked-up, often immature, mercurial human being waking up each day and hoping for the best. If I were some sort of mystic, I’d be somewhere leading silent retreats with a stoic face, as opposed to here, at my desk, eating a cowboy cookie and wondering if you’re going to like my blog post.

I can say I do my best every day, but the fact is my “best” is occasionally (often? regularly? weekly?) rather pathetic.

I’m human at best. A complete asshole at worst. And every day feels like a battle between my higher and lower selves.

And yes, my higher self knows screaming FUCK YOU and FUCK YOU and FUCK YOU from the rooftops is not particularly “helpful.” Nobody’s going to go home and say, “Wow, Janelle screaming FUCK TRUMP SUPPORTERS sure did enlighten me! I see it all differently now!”

And yet, I’m not entirely convinced our anger on this front – the sexual assault/rape culture front — isn’t necessary and vital.

Because women have been told since childhood to shut the hell up about these small and large assaults because “that’s the way boys are.” It’s just “locker room talk,” you know.

We’ve been taught since birth to be grateful because it could have been worse.

We’ve been taught to be quiet because you don’t want to be one of those women, the ones who walk around accusing men of every little infraction. Consequently, women minimize and overlook and tell ourselves “It wasn’t that big of a deal.”

Later, at night, we shudder to remember. And later still, with our friends, we realize every single goddamn woman we know has been assaulted or molested or harassed at least once.

We’re taught to ask ourselves what we could have done to cause it. We’re taught that our bodies were made and built for male consumption – don’t get too fat. Don’t get too thin. Don’t show too much skin. Don’t use your breasts for breastfeeding. Don’t complain. Don’t attack. Don’t be too sensitive.

We’ve been taught to cover ourselves to avoid getting raped, to carry pepper spray and not get too drunk and look around at night while walking and avoid certain places – and we’ve been taught that this is mature, sound womanhood.

We’ve been taught how to WOMAN safely.

We’ve lived and breathed this information and LIVED and BREATHED it again – this way of being –  every fucking day since we knew we were “women,” and it’s all been done with an air of normalcy, an air of “nothing to see here, folks, just another woman trying to stay safe from men who want to assault her.”

SO FUCK YEAH WE ARE ANGRY.

Wouldn’t you be?

Fuck yeah we get to scream for a bit. Fuck yeah we get to come out and yell that we are done living like this and it isn’t “normal” (or shouldn’t be), and we will fight and burn this shit down and maybe our fury right now is our fuel — some fire in our step, some flames to our voices, because we are tired of being attacked and silenced.  

Attacked and blamed.

Attacked and told how to not get attacked again.

Attacked and told how to keep our daughters safe from attack.

Sometimes rage is the first liberating emotion. Sometimes we have to recognize we are furious before we can move on to other emotions.

Sometimes rage leads us for the first time to our voices.

I believe this anger needs to bubble up and out of us in one steaming explosion of united rage, so we can come together in the pain and love that moves past anger and into a planet that’s safe for our daughters.

Nobody asked me if I wanted my body violated. Nobody asked me if I wanted bosses who suggested sex as my obligation to them. Nobody asked me if I wanted to play along with this, and I did, and it got me nothing but a pussy-grabbing piece of shit president.

And the nation made clear it doesn’t want to hear our voices.

So yes. If we have to scream, we will scream. And if it’s in rage, it’s in rage.

How about this?

We will be helpful when you stop violating our bodies in person and legislation.

Until then, rage on, sisters, because I know it’s rooted in love. Love of ourselves, our daughters and granddaughters and sons and grandsons. Sometimes love is fierce as hell – a fighting, relentless, burning thing – and the nation has made it clear it won’t hear our whispers.

So fuck whispering.

We’ve tried that. It’s time for something else. We get to be furious. We get to fight. And we get to win.

 

I wrote this note and stuck it on my wall after the conversations about my lack of helpfulness.

 

16 Comments | Posted in politics, Uncategorized | October 17, 2017

Do you ever wonder why the hell we trust people?

by renegademama

Just sometimes, ya know? Like when somebody you absolutely knew was trustworthy – somebody you considered family, somebody you invited into all areas of your life, somebody you would have sworn felt the same about you – turns out to be a goddamn liar without any particular capacity for, oh, you know, integrity?

It’s impossible to write this post without being annoyingly vague, but that is the burden we must bear, for this isn’t a story I can detail. I can, however, tell you this: A person my entire family loved like a fucking brother – a non-blood relative each of my kids called “uncle” – betrayed the shit out of us, lied about it, kept lying about it, lied some more about just in case there were some lies left untold, and then, just when we were about to open conversation with him in the hope of some reconciliation, re-engaged unapologetically in the same shit that ended our friendship in the first place.

But the details are unimportant.

The point is, and the thing Mac and I have been asking ourselves since this happened a couple of months ago, after all the tears and rage and confusion – is how difficult it is to not simply shut down the entire friend division of life.

After a loss and betrayal like this, the feeling of “How could I be so wrong about a person?” is overwhelming, and I question my ability to assess character, morality, integrity.

And in the pain and confusion, there’s a side of Mac and me that never wants to open up to anybody again, never wants a new friend, never wants to let anyone come over on motherfucking Christmas.

As in, friendship closed for business until further notice.

 

Because truly, how can you love somebody so much and have them throw ya away for nothing?

For real, how can we be so goddamn wrong about people? 

That’s the thing, you know? That feeling of having been hoodwinked, played, taken for the ultimate heart ride. But this time, we included our children. This motherfucker caused serious emotional pain for our children.

And I had to navigate that, answer their questions about why he doesn’t come around anymore, and how much they miss him, and I had to come up with something to say beyond: “Some people are fucking assholes.”

Because that wouldn’t have been entirely true anyway, though I wanted to say it in the heat of my sadness. I wanted to rail and scream and tell them we were simply wrong about this person and fuck him and the boat he rode in on.

But that ain’t true, and I know it. And they need to know it.

Instead, I told them, “Well, he made some decisions that make it impossible for us to be friends, but we loved him, and he loved us, and we had some great times together, but sometimes love isn’t enough.”

Sometimes love isn’t enough. Sometimes it isn’t enough to counteract the brokenness and imperfections of a person, their inability to show honesty or decency or maturity, and you have to let both parts stand. Sometimes you have to accept a person is just too fucked up to trust.

Even though you want to.

I know, I know. “We don’t harm people we love.”

And to that I say, Lolllllllllll. That’s a good one. Either we do harm people we love, or no human on the planet knows how to love, because come the fuck on. Seems to me we harm the people we love often.

I’ve been harmed by AND harmed every single person I love most on this earth.

Seems to me we have love and we have all this other shit inside of us too, parts that do harm, and the people around us feel both.

But with most people, the people we keep in our lives, the support and love and devotion and service is way bigger than the harm, so we can tolerate a person’s humanity, their brokenness.

There’s a difference between imperfect and FUCKING TOXIC AS FUCK.

We gotta let the toxic ones go.

 

But then we’re left with all the love we shared and nowhere to put it. We’re left with memories of the pain and the friendship, and the confusion of where the fuck it all went wrong.

Part of me wants to shut off, shut down, shove everyone away. Mac and I took turns saying, “I’m never trusting anyone again.” We were joking, sort of. We were being dramatic, sort of. And yet, I see people who do exactly that. I see people hurt by the inevitable betrayal of humans, by the imperfections of those around them, and turning themselves into impenetrable fortresses.

I get it. We have to survive somehow. And honestly, in moments, it’s rather appealing.

But this isn’t a threat to my continued survival, and as such, it’s something that simply hurts, a lot, and makes me question what I thought I knew of people. Makes me wonder what I could have learned, and should learn, and will learn. I look for my part in all this: Where were the signs? What could I have done better? It’s all we can do, I guess. Try to gain some wisdom while also recognizing that sometimes there is nothing we can do, nothing to foresee, and people are just goddamn WEIRD.

I know in my heart that “never loving a new person again” is not the solution. I know that openness to deep friendship is not the solution. But goddamnit, I would have staked my life on this fool.

Bah.

I suppose I find myself making the ultimate choice again, to let the fucked up nature of humans exist alongside their exquisite beauty, and holding so damn close the friends who’ve stuck around, the family by my side—to remind me not only of the fleeting nature of connection, but the sacredness of the threads that remain.

I have never felt more grateful for the friends in my life who exist like rocks, have withstood the test of years. If nothing else, I see that, and it’s blinding in its brilliance.

So here’s to more ridiculous loving.

Mac gave me this card a few months ago, and it feels so right.

***

Join me in January

for the first workshop in my series, and then write with me ALL YEAR. 

Write Anyway” is for the person who:

  • has a nagging question or persistent feeling of “You should write this,” but isn’t;
  • can’t decide what to write about;
  • constantly hears the “you suck why are you even trying?” voice when she sits down to write;
  • is too afraid to write what they’re really feeling/thinking/experiencing;
  • is agonizing over what people will think;
  • is obsessing over perfection; and/or
  • getting bent out of shape for 3 days over assholes on the internet criticizing in ways that hurt (and somehow they always hit where it hurts). Insulting intelligence. Name-calling. Making fun. Crafting Reddit threads against you.

An honest account of “chore time” in the shitshow of my domicile

by renegademama

Somebody on Facebook recently asked me what chores are like in my house, so I thought I’d tell you about it in entirely honest, unequivocal terms.

In short, it fucking sucks.

Perhaps it’s a result of bad parenting, and surely in response to this post, all sorts of helpful humans will suggest infallible tactics to WHIP MY ASSHOLE KIDS INTO SHAPE, or, better yet, get my sorry ass functioning on the level of the enlightened, but I don’t fucking care. The truth is what it is, for whatever reason, and chores around my house go like this:

The second the teenager starts working, her mood becomes that of downtrodden elderly person sick of the way life has mistreated her all these years.

She generally walks around doing her work while shouting at her siblings for failing to do theirs and asking my husband and me if we would please “start parenting our children.”

I usually look at her and wonder if perhaps a better option would be to burn the fucking house down.

I TOO AM ATTEMPTING TO PARENT HERE, TEENAGER, BUT HAVE YOU SEEN WHAT I AM WORKING WITH?

Incidentally, she’s my favorite kid whilst doing chores because although she is annoying as fuck, she is, in fact, DOING SOMETHING, which is generally more than I can say for my son, who’s twelve, and has to be asked 5 to 27 times to complete a single task.

Every time it’s chore time, he suddenly has to go to the bathroom, for a long time, or he begins doing a task, such as the dishes, only to get distracted almost immediately by a funnel, which he will fill with water and bubbles until Mac or I walk by and remind him of the importance of progress in such situations.

He gets back on task but then sees a jar with a lid, which is apparently fucking fascinating, or hears Phineas & Ferb echoing out of the iPad held on the lap of his seven-year-old sister, who has been asked three times to turn the iPad off and clean her room.

Twelve year old somehow forgets all reality and saunters over to observe the sound, which now has my husband almost roaring because we’re on reminder number 6 to DO THE DISHES.

I take seven-year-old by the hand and escort her into the room, where I glance at the one-foot piles of clothes everywhere and ask, again, why all the clothes have to be removed from the drawers in order to find a single outfit.

“I was looking for my dinosaur shirt” is somehow her categorical answer.

Well, also there’s, “I don’t know.”

So infinitely helpful, these kids.

I scan the room with 12,000 stuffed animals never played with but somehow of great sentimental importance and the overturned magnetic tiles bin, the dress up clothes, the Legos—and I’m overwhelmed with such a sense of existential malaise I usually just stand there with mouth open wondering if this is really my life.

After staring into the ontological void, I often walk out of the room hoping for the best, knowing there’s a good chance the kid will shove all the shit under the bed. I’m conflicted about the whole bed-shoving thing. On the one hand, it’s a useless, lazy activity simply moving the mess from one location to another.

On the other hand, it moves the mess from one location to a less visible one, which in my state of deep malaise, kinda feels like a win.

To understand my standards in moments like that, please take regular standards and remove them entirely.

If I don’t leave, I usually start working, somehow always donating 20% of what I see to the goodwill pile – BUT HOW DOES THE SHIT JUST KEEP MATERIALIZING OUT OF NOWHERE? – while shouting to Mac how “we need to make the kids pick up their room every day after school!” and he adamantly agrees despite the fact that we have never once accomplished this task with any regularity.

Alternatively, I will call him into the bedroom to say things like, “Do you see this shit?”

And “SOMETHING IS WRONG WITH OUR FUCKING KIDS.” Or I blame their habits on him.

I find that goes well.

We will then usually say something about garbage bags and how all items on the floor will end up in them unless shit starts changing today.

Vague threats and empty rhetoric are my most essential parenting tools.

Meanwhile, the three-year-old is running around with a large sword from the dude in Moana, whacking his siblings until they engage with him and Mac and I shout “Get back to work!”

The dog sits farting in the living room.

To contain him (the toddler, not the dog) sometimes we’ll turn on the TV, but then the sweet siren sound of the electronic babysitter radiates throughout the house, attracting the semi-addicted 7-year-old and 12-year-old until all three are huddled in living room and the teenager is once again accusing me of “not parenting.”

This generally continues for two to four hours until each kid (sans toddler because he’s useless) has managed through some miracle of baby Jesus, Mary, and Buddha, to complete the fucking chores on their chore list.

As miserable as chore time is, the idea of not having them do chores is about eighty times worse because who the fuck wants to raise entitled assholes who won’t do chores? I DO NOT.

And yes, I know, Super Capable Mother who will comment on this very post letting me know how I need to be consistent, firm, and reasonable and my kids will follow in line perfectly, I REALIZE MY DEFICIENCIES ARE THE PROBLEM HERE AND NO I HAVE NO POINT OTHER THAN TO SAY CHORE TIME SUCKS ASS.

The most infuriating part of chore time is that at the end of it, each and every kid minus the toddler because all he cares about is removing toys from shelves we just organized starts saying things like, “Wow, our house sure is nice when it’s clean like this!”

And I’m like “Yeah, it really is isn’t it? Maybe we could do this WITHOUT THE WRATH OF SATAN.”

But they look at me like I’m speaking some other language.

Sometimes, when feeling entrepreneurial, I will print out some chore charts and through a hundred forms of self-delusion, convince myself that my devotion to them will last more than three days.

Oh, and how long does the nice clean hopeful beauty house last?

One to one and a half hours.

So yes. There you go. That is how it goes down in my house. Every damn time, even though we’ve had kids for nearly 16 years and there are four of them.

Bring on the internet helpers! I’m all ears!

That is a lie. I am not listening.

If I listened, wouldn’t I be in better parental shape by now? 

In other news, here’s my toddler’s contribution to chore time:

thanks, Arlo.

***

I may suck at chores, but I don’t suck at teaching writing. 

COME WRITE WITH ME GODDAMNIT

in the 

January 2018 “Write Anyway” Session

 

I found this a year after I named my workshop “write anyway,” which basically means I am Junot Diaz.

 

37 Comments | Posted in bitching about the kids I chose to have. | September 20, 2017

So the kids are back in school

by renegademama

I really want to write a coherent and spellbinding blog post on some sort of topic – you know, how I usually do (ha.ha.ha) – but I’m finding myself somewhat without a brain.

It happens occasionally. It’s like my brain detaches from my body for a bit and I find myself going through the motions of my life with a bit of numbness. Kind of a lack of opinions, if you can imagine such a thing.

Also, perhaps the dumpster fire of our country is playing a tiny role in my apathy. It’s like I spend so much of my day wondering HOW THE FUCK people can say things like “Trump isn’t racist and supporting him is a step toward equality for all.”

I think my brain has had to detach from my body to avoid exploding. Like it’s all get me the hell outta here until things improve.

So then I try to not read the Twitter and Facebook but that goes terribly because I’m addicted.

What.

Anyway, my oldest kid started high school. This feels so profoundly wrong on so many levels. First of all, where the fuck did the last 15 years go, and why did nobody tell me it goes this fast?

OH RIGHT THEY’VE BEEN TELLING ME THAT FOREVER and it annoyed me.

Three years. I get three more years until she moves out. We’re trying to bribe her to stay. We told her we’d buy her a car if she stays at home and goes to community college. Any day now I’m going to figure out how to afford to buy her a car.

When I was pregnant with her at 22, I used to imagine the day she graduated from high school. I used to imagine her as a teenager, and I’d think it was so far off it probably wasn’t real. It felt so distant it was irrelevant.  

And now here we are.

And Rocket is in his last year of grammar school. Next year he starts middle school. Then he’s going to be a teenager too, and you know what? I have some opinions on that (OH THERE I AM): Hormones highjack our kids and turn them into intermittently intolerable nutjobs.

And that hurts. A lot. I watch it happening. I know it’s right and healthy and good.

Also, are hormones my excuse? As far as the intermittently intolerable nutjob thing goes?

But seriously, there’s a heaviness that comes, an adult-ness, and it creeps in and takes over and I know it’s about detachment and growing, and I know text-bantering with my teenager and relating to her on a more “friend” level is actually FUN, and watching her become herself is downright miraculous, but also, it fucking hurts watching them go.

You know?

And Rocket is almost there. I feel it. I see it. I want to scream “Nooooooo” until maturity changes its mind and I get to keep my little boy. Bah.

George started second grade, which was one of my favorite years in school, and I can handle that.

Arlo is three. He’s either the cutest thing I’ve ever seen in my life or a naked tyrant screaming on the kitchen floor because his frivolous wants are not being met.

Come to think of it, the three-year-old and teenagers have a lot in common.

Maybe I’m just feeling the weight of time moving on, as we head into a new school year, but also I think I’m pretty fucking tired of driving kids around in circles all damn day. Like “school year” means a lot of mundane routine, back IN IT, the SHIT. I’m always about half interested in these tasks, the way life becomes so FAST and BUSY and INTENSE. I suppose if I were a better, more devoted mother I would get really excited about sitting in “car line” and remembering folders and lunches and other such complexity.

Plus, the talking. The talking in the car. The car talking. The four kids car talking.

This morning I told my friend “I spend a good portion of my life pretending to give a shit what my kids are saying.” I DON’T MEAN THAT. Okay I kind of mean that.

Because by hour two of endless kid chatter, my detached brain is like PERHAPS THERE WAS GOING TO BE MORE THAN THIS ALSO WHY CAN’T YOU TAKE THE BUS AND HOW LOUD DO I HAVE TO TURN UP THIS MUSIC BEFORE YOU GIVE UP SPEAKING?

I don’t do that. Of course I sit in riveted fascination, hanging on their every word, because it all goes so quickly, you know?

 I’ll just let you decide what’s happening.

Anyway, they’re cute though, and I’m glad they’re here, and I’m here, and you’re here.

Much love to all of you affected by the floods in Texas. Thinking of you. Tell me how you are.

And happy fucking school year guys! We’re so good at this!

Arlo thought he was going to school too. Hence the lunchbox. I didn’t break it to him that he was in pajamas.

19 Comments | Posted in I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT I'M DOING HERE. | August 30, 2017

Dear white women: This is definitely us.

by renegademama

NOTE: I wrote this post the day after Trump was elected, but never published it, because my grandmother was murdered later that same day, and obviously this blog was nowhere in my mind. I am publishing it today, in the wake of the Nazi Charlottesville terrorism, because the actual hashtag #ThisIsNotUs was trending on Twitter yesterday. And it feels like we will never learn. 

I wrote this to white women because I am a white woman, and most of my readers are women, but of course it’s relevant to all white people. And everything written here applies to me, too. We are all complicit and all responsible.  


Dear fellow white women:

We have got to stop saying we are better than this. We have got to stop saying this is not our country. We have got to stop saying “this is not us.”

This is us. This is our country. And we are not better than this. In fact, people of color have been telling us this for, oh, forever, and we are only “shocked” because we have not been listening.

62% of non-college educated white women voters cast their ballots for a KKK-endorsed reality TV star who bragged about sexually assaulting women.

53% of white women voters overall went for a KKK-endorsed reality TV star who wants to ban Muslims from entering the country, close down mosques, deport Mexicans, and remove our right to a safe abortion.

This means that white women – our aunts, sisters, grandmas, cousins, friends and neighbors – are largely more invested in white supremacy than agency over their own bodies.

Meanwhile, we make happy Pantsuit Facebook groups and gleefully exclaim, “busted glass ceiling!” Well, almost.

WE CANNOT FUCKING DO THIS.

If we think we get to look away from the disaster we’ve built – that we asked for, that we lovingly coddled and massaged into being – largely by telling ourselves “this is not us,” we are worse than ever anticipated.

If we insist on believing that white supremacy is a distant problem rather than the core of our national rhetoric, we are worse than ever anticipated.

If we cling to American Exceptionalism in the face of undeniable evidence to the contrary, we are worse than ever anticipated.

And if we insist that a small minority of white people went to the polls and created this mess—that merely a fringe population is outright fucking racist—we are worse than ever anticipated.

We may not turn away. We may not blame Bernie Bros, email “scandals,” third-party voters, media, or the electoral college.

It’s all whiteness anyway.

We may not deflect blame.

OVER HALF OF US WHO VOTED SHOWED UP FOR DONALD FUCKING TRUMP.

I know. I know. You’re a “good one.” I’m a “good one.” Everyone in the Pantsuit crew is a good one. And yet.

53%

This is definitely us.

And of course it hurts. It hurts because it’s truer than anything we’ve ever experienced. It is the moment we are faced with ourselves and cannot look away. It is the moment the stripped, hard truth is placed in our hands.

Trump is whiteness personified. He is masochistic white male mediocrity embodied. HE IS OUTRIGHT CLEAR FUCKING RACISM.

And we voted for him.

And yet still what I see is a bunch of sad people running around the internet weeping, This isn’t my country! This isn’t me!

We think we are excellent liberals. We want to be fair and true and just. But women. 53% showed up for Captain I Hate Brown People.

You know what percentage of black women voters voted for Trump?

6%.

SIX FUCKING PERCENT.

 

They say the truth will set you free, but first it will really piss you off. The reason it pisses us off is not simply because we are wrong, but because the truth – the great truth – sets aflame everything we thought we knew about ourselves. It uses us up and spits us out into a pile of something we never imagined could exist in us, let alone thrive at the core of our being.

Do we believe people of color now?

Do we believe our silence is compliance? Do we believe our silence is not revolutionary? Do we believe that it is only through pointed, conscientious action that we can break down the system of supremacy from which we all benefit? Do we see that watching slavery movies and feeling bad isn’t doing a goddamn thing?

Do we believe we are responsible? That we must speak? That we must call out the fifty racists in our families–oh come on. I know they’re there. Even in Portland–that we must RAISE CHILDREN WHO UNDERSTAND AMERICA WAS BUILT ON RACISM?

We are not post-racial. We have never been equal. And it is an outright delusion to convince ourselves “This is not us.”

This man was brought to power because of his white supremacy, not in spite of it.

This is a backlash of eight years of black presidency. This is a backlash against people of color rising to power. This is white America reclaiming its Empire.

This is every race-based immigration law in our history. This is Native America genocide. This is anti-miscegenation laws, the one-drop rule, and American colonization. This is white nostalgia and the rewriting of history.

This is Jim Crow after slavery. This is the prison pipeline after civil rights. This is redlining and white flight after the GI Bill of WWII.

This is exactly how America has always wanted it. HAS ALWAYS DONE IT.

Nothing could be more “us.”

We cannot run from this discomfort. We cannot hide from the dawning awareness that everything we’ve been taught about our country was a lie. We cannot soften this blow.

I choose to believe that this tragedy is not in vain, because I cannot believe otherwise. I choose to believe that this is an opportunity to finally, completely and totally rebuild a sick and broken nation.

We have let down people of color again. We have let down queer folk again. We have let down immigrants, and native peoples too. Again. We have let down women again.

But it is not “we.” Not all we.

It is us.

121 Comments | Posted in politics | August 13, 2017