Thursday, August 21, 2008

And That's The Truth

As a black female in America, many years of observation have honed my instincts and taught me which battles are worth my time to try and win, and which are worth fighting for but will never change minds that are permanently closed under the guise of everyone can pull themselves up by their bootstraps.  Guess which one this is.

The last few years have plainly shown that anyone who thinks that racial issues are okay in America, are obviously not one of the races that have been historically shunned in this country.  There has never been an Italian, Asian, Indian, Black or Hispanic President.  We can't even address the blatant sexism that exists and is glorified every day in this country by people who should know better.  If Muslim countries where the woman walks three feet back and to the right can elect a female Prime Minister or President, what's our excuse?  Other than the obvious?
One of the peculiar media memes of the past year has been a lot of tormented nonsense about whether the ascendance of Barack Obama means that race is somehow off the table as a defining issue in American life. Of course his prospective nomination is a historic moment, but I can't even begin to understand why this is a controversial topic. How can anybody suggest with a straight face that pervasive racism is not the reason why, in a year when every imaginable factor favors the Democrats, Obama is even or trailing in the polls behind an addled, war-hawk septuagenarian who is disliked by his own party?
To me it is Katrina that puts the lie to any fantasy of a race-neutral America. And it's Katrina, not 9/11, that displays the nation's potentially fatal 21st century weakness. While countless billions have been spent converting our society into a police state to prevent another unpreventable attack by a handful of neo-medieval wackos, the story of the ongoing destruction of a historic, majority-black American city -- before, during and after that storm -- has been briskly swept under the carpet or, more accurately, abandoned to investigative journalists, documentary filmmakers, NGO social workers, corrupt or incompetent bureaucrats and other irrelevant social debris.
As time passes on, it will be the blatant lack of response to Katrina that identifies this country.  Identifies her as the liar and hypocrite she is.  Today's Americans, having got their piece of the "pie", are determined to maintain the status quo by making sure that nobody else gets a slice.  They are no longer interested in the tired, the poor, the hungry or the hurting, it might upset the apple cart of their self induced superiority.  Unfortunately, compassion wasn't written into the Constitution and even if it was, it would have been eliminated right along with the rest of the Bill of Rights in a futile effort to protect us from a bogeyman in a cave half the world away. Because a frightening majority of the people in power, are determined to stay there.  No matter what the cost.

Our Founding Fathers must be so proud.  Not.


No comments:

Post a Comment