world improvement thru smarts & hearts

The Crucible

No cheesy pseudo-cult pretense this time. There’s just too much going on, and too much pain and fear to make light of it. And I’ve frankly been so wrung-out emotionally that it’s hard to even formulate coherent sentences. Because here in America, we have just royally fucked ourselves, and good. The rise of Trump and the sharks circling in his wake have made the divisions that we have long tried to ignore far too glaring and obvious to deny any more. I’ve spent the last week and a half cycling through stages of grief and mourning; I’ve cried, I’ve yelled, I’ve bargained, I’ve eaten a metric ton of junk food, I’ve tried to ask “why?”, and I’ve even started planning my post-apocalyptic compound. But the most helpful and cathartic thing I’ve done is just silently been in community with people who feel the same way. And that’s what has given me the hope I cling so desperately to right now.364e4d08071c3adbf7148391dcbf3ebd

And I do have hope. Not for the immediate future – I’m pretty sure that’s totally fucked. I have no doubt that the GOP Resurgent will do its best to destroy the environment, deplete our resources, exploit anyone and anything they can, and just generally try to turn our country into a fascist theocratic police state that would make George Orwell gasp. I mean, we literally are straying into 1984 territory here. All we’re missing is the Thought Police… unless you count the NSA’s surveillance of social media, so I guess that’s sort of covered too. But I digress.

The Rise of Trump is a clarion call that we must now act upon. Evil has literally taken over our country. People masquerading as religious people preach hate and are calling for concentration camps. The president-elect is setting up state-regulated foreign trade that will directly benefit his companies and dynasty. And so forth. We knew this was coming, though. To pretend otherwise is to deny the suffering and marginalization of countless Americans over the last 200+ years. Because make no mistake, this has everything to do with the Civil War and the fundamental difference in philosophy between those who embrace a multicultural society and those who reject it.

We like to quote statistics about the election and analyze every little detail to death, but the core of the matter is that there are two primary worldviews in conflict with each other in America and they are simply not mutually compatible. We can slice and dice the two camps in whatever terminology you want: rural versus urban, educated versus under-educated, Republican versus Democrat… but the reality boils down to people who are tribalistic versus those who are globalistic. (And while I’m pretty sure those aren’t the sociological terms for it, hopefully you know what I mean.) And because the globalistic folks were so busy pointing fingers at all the other problems we have, we let the tribe of barbarians into the city and they took it over.

So what do we do now? I really don’t know. There’s no easy solution. Or at least not an effective one that will allow all of us to walk away with our ivory towers of morality intact. Because I strongly believe we are at a true turning point in human social evolution: we must choose to push forward as a global society, or let ourselves remain mired in the evil and backwardness of the Dark Ages. Rome may not have fallen in a day, and America won’t either. But it’s crumbling quickly, and we need to make some difficult decisions about the greater good. And it will get bloody. It’s already gotten bloody. And yes, the other side has a LOT more guns (thanks, NRA) and willingness to use them. But we have other weapons we can use to fight back: Intelligence. Compassion. Innovation. Love.

Love is a powerful force. Perhaps the most powerful in the ‘verse. It’s what makes us alive, and yearn for something better. We love our children, so we want them to flourish. We love our planet, so we want to protect and nourish it. We love our each other, so we march in protest and we yell and scream and WE DO NOT FUCKING EVER GIVE UP. Because that’s how we got here. A lot of good people gave up and didn’t vote. Or they voted for candidates they knew weren’t feasible. But the time for throwing tantrums because you didn’t get exactly what you wanted is over. We’re now at war, and we have to stick together. United we stand… divided they triumph.

This is our crucible as a nation. Perhaps as a species. What we do and where we go from here will resonate in time for centuries to come. America IS great, and always has been. But we must take it back from the greedy corporate assholes and the small-minded bigots who only want to benefit their own tribe that prop them up. Because we know there are no more tribes… we are all one tribe, now and forever. And we may come out of this crucible burned and diminished, but also stronger.

I don’t believe in divine intervention or in fate. But I do believe in the power of humanity to accomplish amazing things. We will work together and survive. Because we must. I believe in us.

Be excellent to one another, my friends.


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