The ‘isms have torn us apart
There are so many. Racism, sexism, socialism and, yes, capitalism. Combined, they have separated our little brains and made us more beholden to a dogma instead of bonding us in a united front against the real evils in the world.
The insanely divisive campaign to tighten voting procedures in many states is solely based on the “big lie” that Donald Trump has perpetrated on the sycophants who want him to return to power. This Trumpism can do nothing other than harm democracy and America herself.
The wildly toxic campaign against schoolboards and teachers is the little brother of the fight against science and facts, which the undereducated and unaware have decided is better than truth. Critical Race Theory is not taught in any grade, middle or high school in this country — so any fight against such a paper tiger is not only unproductive, it’s downright embarrassing.
If one took the time to read works by legal scholars like Derrick Bell, who grew up in the Hill District of Pittsburgh, they would have a better idea of what the COLLEGE COURSE named Critical Race Theory is all about. They would see the foolishness of their actions as they became aware that it’s an examination of how racial injustice has been codified in the laws of the United States. CRT is a collection of critical stances against the existing legal order based on the points of view of minorities across all races and creeds. Every time the governor of any state signs into a law a ban on teaching Critical Race Theory, they are proving it’s more than a theory. By banning the teachings of these legal scholars, they are underscoring the way US law is controlled by white men and women who, unknowingly or knowingly, bend the laws to favor white citizens. The concept that they are “protecting” their white offspring from discomfort is ironic.
Denialism. Uncle Bob didn’t trust the government and was adamant that he was not going to get the virus. Well, Covid-19 killed him. The responses were sad. His wife said, “People who got the shot also caught the thing. Bob was right.” Wow, did she miss the truth that those who have been vaccinated hardly ever die, even if they are a breakthrough case? I guess she was too busy with the funeral. The far-right politicians keep up their denial about the effectiveness of the vaccine and do little promote injections because they want to be seen as “freedom fighters.”
Last week I watched the HBO TV show, Real Time with Bill Maher. His guest was Atlantic writer Caitlin Flanagan, who presented her thoughts on what I might suggest is her very own Critical Masculinity Theory. Ms. Flanagan believes “it’s critical to teach boys the virtues of men who do heroic things, and she says it’s important to distinguish men from women.” Keep reading, I need time to reload.
Caitlin railed on what she says is misdirected and dangerous wokeness, somehow turning “heroic masculinity” into a dirty phrase. She believes men are simply stronger and better suited to save the day when physical strength is the operative factor. Okay, so we need strong men to save the lady in distress, rather than the lady in a dress who uses her brain to figure out how to save the world, which includes men. Why are dangers often painted as physical contests?
You may remember that now infamous photo of Missouri Senator Josh Hawley walking from the capitol building on January 6th with his fist raised in support of the insurrectionists and protestors.
Mr. Hawley, spoke at the National Conservatism Conference and addressed the issue of “manhood,” which he said was under attack. He called upon men to return to traditional masculine roles. He claimed that the effort to combat toxic masculinity in the US has led men to consume more pornography and play more video games. REALLY?
Normally, this is where I would insert a joke about Josh’s fear that his male organ wasn’t as big as his bank account, which some say is one million dollars. Compensation jokes aside, Hawley, like many right-winged messengers of the past, paints a “men as heroes and women as whores” landscape. Is that the “traditional masculinity” he speaks of, or could it be something darker? The Weimar Republic of Germany preached to its soldiers the ideals of manliness and maternity, concepts central to the German patriotic view of World War I. One of those broken soldiers was a guy named Adolf Hitler. Despite all his education, Josh Hawley doesn’t see a connection. Perhaps we should ask his wife and three kids if girls and boys are equal under the eyes of God?
One of my neighbors has an “anti-Socialism” sign hanging in his garage. Now here’s a guy who accepts his monthly social security check without realizing if he was alive in the 1930s he would have been protesting the very program that FDR introduced to save the country.
Joe Machin, that opinionated Senator from West Virginia, sees government as a “partner” not a “provider.” Well, sorry to say, Joe, you are wrong! We pay taxes and then the government PROVIDES us with services and protections that we earned. Lawmaker rhetoric like this gets in the way of progress. They think they are making a point when some like Kyrsten Sinema don’t even take the time to state a point.
Americans are restless because they work hard and want to get to the next level, but people in power are so into their own personal ‘isms they don’t move as fast as the garbage man or the Door-Dasher. How can we get anywhere if people won’t put aside their stupid dogmas, false beliefs and party loyalties and focus on the mythical, united Americanism? Can’t they at least try?
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We knew that the great divide in America would have a major effect on the presidential election in the year 2020, but something else was lurking that we didn’t anticipate. The world suffered a global pandemic of Covid-19, and everything changed. The lockdown motivated one author to write MASHED POTATOES: Covid, Cancer & Comfort Food. The cover ironically claims the book is a “humorous” recollection of 2020, but one might ask, “Where was the humor?” This is a work of survival to motivate those who desire to get beyond Covid-19, beat cancer and defend our precious Democracy. The world got Covid, the writer got cancer and we all ate copious amounts of comfort food. It’s time to swallow the truth, survive the madness, take a large spoon and savor some delicious MASHED POTATOES. Get some here.