When “Truth is not True” and Facts don’t matter, it is increasingly difficult to determine whether you are living in the “real world” or an “alternate reality” with “Alternative Facts” as your barometer. The public events of this past year have been at times unbelievable and at other times like being in a vortex spinning out-of-control and sucking everything up into its powerful cosmic dissonance. It really has been some kind of year. At times the year has progressed at a breakneck pace and at other times it has been like slogging through the mud just trying to make it from one day to the next. This psychic dysfunction fed into a public narrative and discourse that became increasingly exhausting and displayed, in living color, our nation’s fractured toxic partisanship and hyper short-sighted vision both individually and collectively. All of this was happening in a year where our darker and most base instincts were on full display and the “Better Angels” of our past seemed to be buried in the back of our memory banks.
The use of FEAR became the toxic elixir of political expediency and a very effective tool it was. The so-called “American Values” touted by the United States in years past were becoming a type of nostalgic memory instead of the definition of who we had always been as a nation. As a tool, the use of Fear takes away any ability to see the “other” as human thereby making it possible to commit atrocities like Child Separation or using tear gas on women and children seeking asylum as a means to a political end. Silent compliance to such policies and practices takes away any semblance of common decency or real human compassion as was clearly evidenced this past year in public policy, practice and procedure.
The year of 2018 continued to see the rise of outward visible racism and the casual acceptance of the same. Additionally, we saw the emboldened demonstrations of racist fringe elements and the endorsement of those elements due to our National Leadership’s willful ignorance of History.
This past year saw an exponential increase in the “corporatization” of institutional and governmental systems. Running the government “like a business” has encouraged a transactional type governmental policy that has lead to the deterioration of treaties and agreements globally, and the slow erosion of partnerships and doctrines that have been in place for more than half a century. The idea that we are even entertaining something as fundamental as “birth-right citizenship” profoundly redefines what it means to be an American.
All of this in the year 2018 makes it imperative that we CHANGE direction in 2019 or the United States of America as we have come to know it will no longer exist. It is not hyperbolic to say 2018 has truly been a year of unprecedented events. Cataclysmic Climate Change events, the prevalence and desensitization to mass shootings continues in the shadow of the March for Our Lives last March, and Black Lives STILL do not Matter given the continued harassment, arrest and murder of Black people doing innocuous things while being Black.
What can you DO to make 2019 better? There’s no “RIGHT” answer but we must ALL DO something because more of the same is NOT an option! Have a New Vision for the New Year! And DO SOMETHING!