Of late, I've been contemplating the abomination that is President Donald Trump and his administration. This has necessarily involved thinking about the Right’s fixation on corporatism as the only way to mediate all of life as we know it. Naturally, I’ve also meditated on GOP ideologies that demonize all manner of quite normal and beneficial American traditions like Liberal Arts Education, public workers, and social security. My pondering has been contextualized by long walks at my family's farm situated on the edge of Appalachia and the Bluegrass.
Excellent article, leavened with insightful wisdom.
One of the main drivers of our collective failure to recognize who we are is the indoctrination of the masses into the American myth in our schools and houses of worship, which together reinforce the myth and refuse to even allow the myth to be examined, much less challenged. I fear we will never overcome our denial, so long as this continues.
It is up to us white folks in the Resistance to bring these words to life. We can be each other's brothers, sisters, and keepers. BEautifully written and well conveyed article.
Thank you, Carol Williams. You are so right. Until people stop hiding their trash behind the myth of American exceptionalism, there will be no progress on social issues. Trump is, indeed, a more transparent window into the ugliness that has been this country's history.
Why does the author use we, us, and all Americans to describe an affliction that many Americans no longer have? This kind of language is annoying as I think that much of the source of the problems humans face come from ego-defining "we" and "us" false identities. There is no "we" when it comes to individual people learning the true history and nature of America and themselves. Each individual must realize these things for themselves.
I also ask, Who are the true "Americans"? Are they Geronimo, Washington, Tecumseh, or Bush? Were they the first peoples that crossed the Bering land bridge? Or the first peoples to migrate out of Africa?
If and until the US faces its history of genocide of the first nations, the theft of their land and the kidnapping and enslaving of the African it will have no future.
Extraordinarily crisp, lucid, appraisal of the American socio-cultural (including political focus at times) condition, in a relatively brief essay! I am wowed! I have a new American hero, and she has proven she has the calm presence of mind to say what she sees & thinks. Meanwhile she sees clearly and thinks sharply along the cutting edges of what most frustrates all about our condition. Any of us who have lived here more than a few years has become immersed inside this cultural inheritance; to presume otherwise is to prove the point to a very great extent. For the commenter who asked, why does she use "we," well, read the article more closely and thoroughly. Admittedly it is not for those who read only a little of it. This essay is a work of penetrating art. Appreciate the art for what it is; then we can look in the mirror of reflection and see ourselves much more deeply than previously. Kudos to Carol L Williams! Kudos to Common Dreams for finding this essay!
Glass House author Brian Alexander recently commented on NPR that when he interviewed a downtrodden middle age woman excited about Trump's win in Lancaster, Ohio (the setting for the book and not all that far from Williams' farm) he asked her what she liked about Trump. Her response: "I just want it to be like it used to be".
She can't get there from here.
WalterJSmith, I wish I was the author of your comments! Thank you for your words and allow me to send kudos to both you and Carol L. Williams. (I scrambled to the bottom of the article to see what her most recent book was . . . and there was naught. Ms. Williams do consider writing a tome or two!)
WalterJSmith, you have elegantly put into words the feelings that I had while reading Carol Williams' excellent, beautiful essay.
Thank you, and Carol L. Williams. Everyone in this country should read this!
Simply outstanding. Carol Williams is clearly a philosopher and a poet. She cuts to the chase, and the quick. May her words travel far and wide.
Africa, at least as I see it, is still an "open continent" there for the taking. The people are savages (/s) and removing them would be a favor to god. Sadly I wonder what with the founding of "Northcom" and the wealth of resources those poor people are about to be the next victims of manifest destiny? We've already "liberated" Libya because the savages wanted to establish their own currency in lieu of the petrodollar. Hillary stated it well when discussing Qadiffi..." We came, we saw, he died" while laughing hysterically. Our trademark, no? The neocon/neoliberal elite and their corporations have them in their crosshairs. As far as the past election is concerned Trump the Loathed and "Ms." Clinton are and were on the same page with the biggest difference between the two being Hillary knew how to read.
Well said Walter!!!
Amazing how little people either know or remember what it used to be like Ray. They are either fondly recalling on old childhood memories which unless the person grew up in an extremely abusive home tend to be positive (no bills, taxes, grocery shopping, taking care of children, etc. and playing all the time , taking long naps...) or the pseudohistory they were taught and still are.
The "true" Americans are now us-all of us who are here, right now. We have to carry that title and must account for the actions we engage in. That's my take on it.
And the "Right" wasn't "sore about losing" when Obama won eight years ago? All those protestors carrying guns around? Mitch McConnell acting like a four year old, saying the goal was to make Obama a one-term president?
I'm not "sore"; after all, if Trump is so good for all of us, why would I be sore? And as a white male, I'm sure to profit more than many others are from his positions and acts, right? So I'm not sore- I'm just waiting, and watching.
Well said! She really nails it, and in such a clear and powerful, yet non-preachy manner. Thank you Carol. Brilliant piece of writing to say the least.
This is so absolutely true. The indoctrination is part of the dumbing down and the ultimate outcome is now the Trump presidency.
We are already raping Africa. Go to a world map and look at the continent and count the countries we are involved with militarily now and in the past.