Shading America

Without a doubt the 28 days of February 2023 delivered a most dispiriting observance of black American presence and heritage. Since its inception as Black History Week in 1926 which then became Black History Month 50 years later, the celebrations and reminiscences fueling this recognition of the most loyal Americans served as a noble reminder of black struggles and national contributions.

Not in 2023. This year the occasion was more akin to a vicious backhand slap followed by a motherless “FUCK ALL YOU NIGGERS!”

These arcs of remembrance first promoted by Carter G. Woodson (“the father of black history”) are meant to also further defuse and deflate contrary notions prized by weak societal segments which see blacks unworthy or undeserving of fairness, justice, and equality. Okay. Not just blacks. But women as well as any whose sexualities and identities do not conform with traditional roles. Strange to write that in the 21st century. But it’s true. It remains a strong current in America. Apparently, that perversity won’t be broken until those holding it finally become extinct.

On behalf of untold tens of millions of true Americans, I insist such people hurry up and shuffle off this mortal coil. You’ll be doing humanity a huge favor.

When their ends finally occur, none should ever mourn their passing. They will be replaced by better Americans. And our nation will improve.

What developed throughout Black History Month 2023 should be seen as full-throated regression. For the people afflicted, it ought to ignite revivals of manifestations one might’ve thought consigned to American history.

What else needs to be done? What else needs to be said? None of it was subtle or coded. It couldn’t have been clearer if LED billboards had been utilized.

The hardest struggles of the civil rights movement had been won. These produced advancements which the decades since have seen built upon incrementally. Small increments but forward nonetheless. Or as Scripture might state, “Water upon rock.” Yet after February 2023 one must be blind to ignore that blacks’ place in America is in retrograde.

Before continuing, this writer can’t inhabit any woman’s or non-conventional gender occupant’s shoes. Male. Straight. Protestant. If it weren’t for complexion, I’d be among the nation’s elect. Skip all the ethnic glorifications. In real life ours remains a WASP world.

Nonetheless, it must be stated without uncertainty if it weren’t for the civil rights movement women never would’ve known decades of making unfettered medical decisions for themselves. Like men. Again, if it weren’t for the civil rights movement same-sexers would still remain mired in the deepest shadows of American life, therefore invisible but nonetheless popularly despised.

So, any woman who needed to end a pregnancy or person possessing gender/sexual fluidity feeling at ease to pursue his/her/[your pronoun here] happiness under the brightest sunshine, thank John Lewis or Viola Liuzzo, among countless many. All of whom were braver than every gun-toting Rexall Ranger extant overcompensating his masculine deficiencies with ARs, AKs, and fancy pistols that kind fetishize.

Lewis, Liuzzo, the legions of others, their efforts spared untold numbers of Americans lives of greater desperation.

They jolted the status quo. Your movements widened the paths they blazed. At least until February 2023. Then it’s as if the toilet overflowed.

The brazenness should astound. Had this audacity been used towards positive results one might commend it.

Instead, those who predominate hidebound hierarchy, or at least have proximity it, claimed “victimhood” because the so-long marginalized and disenfranchised successfully used by-the-book (“No one ever went wrong going by the book.”) methods to inch that much closer to what our country proclaims rightful for every citizen. And the complainants turned this on its head in the most shameless manner possible.

The needlessly aggrieved have become sensitized to their own wholly invented baseless gripes while remaining resolutely calloused to others’ actual inequalities.

The deplorables twisted the current generation’s mania for righting wrongs heedlessly into a weapon seeking to undo progress towards a more equitable America. All throughout February 2023 one should’ve heard the distorted echoes that have hobbled free speech on campuses and in public forums. In both vast arenas, speaking one’s mind has been assailed. All for the “protection” of burgeoning adults who’ve been coddled throughout their formative years.

Now that worm has turned … into a rattlesnake.

Let’s suppose it a backlash against possibly having one’s mind straitened. The “trigger” pendulum has swung rightward. A realignment of mindfulness. Taken to demented extremes, drag queens are eroding what must’ve been the sandiest foundation ever for perceived manhood. While black history is just being sanitized for the protection of Old World Anglo descendants. It should surprise nobody plenty of ancestral lines hold disreputable strands. Those actors crowded the roles of villains during the nation’s most malevolent racial strife.

History is best taught not concealed. Less possibility of repeating past mistakes that way. Learning it makes us brave, good, and strong. Otherwise, we promote mopery.

And as far as being discomforted by American heritage which exposes the country’s unsavory past, that unease is nothing against the discomfort those in bondage felt or what their inheritors experienced while marching towards the full enfranchisement they were guaranteed.

The slightest contrary thought, utterance, position, whatever, further shakes the mental competency of the suspect among us or those suspecting themselves. Facing opposition, dislike, or God help them, offense, the common resort is complaint. Bruised feelings. No, sulky umbrage.

Where has the ability to debate – okay, argue – vanished to in our nation? Martin Luther King and Malcolm X didn’t pout and whine when targeted by the sort of opprobrium – verbal and physical – presented via their era’s unhindered and unhinged. Knowing themselves sure, sure in themselves, they not only artfully refuted challenges but frequently pointed out their fallacies.

Of course, they firmly stood upon moral high ground. And neither harangued.

So, now it must be acknowledged that the morally ambivalent who had been in retreat have adroitly employed the same tactics as campus scolds. Somehow women who don’t submit to the male thumb puts Anglo patriarchy in danger. Somehow black history, which is American history starting in 1619, skews the nation’s otherwise selective, narrow, and heavily perfumed narrative. Somehow wired from birth sexual natures contrary to gender expectations may poison conventional man/woman roles.

What fuels such hysteria? How big a fool must one be to believe it?

A bad portion of America has been established on lies. In America, deluded arbiters reflexively work slavishly to suppress inconvenient truths. More and more of these now replace one-time incontrovertible nation-forming myths.

It’s amazing what Americans don’t know about the United States. Ours is not that benevolent a society. Just ask any nonconformist. Or any believer whose faith does not extol a strict smothering Christianity that pays barest lip service to the Gospel.

Left to current right-wingers, the desire to whitewash black participation throughout this country’s history borrows heavily from the Soviets’ rendering those Russians “non-persons” who’d deviated from the party line as well as Winston Smith’s old job of excising then rewriting history at the Ministry of Truth.

Doubtlessly since knowing these facts will discomfort any incapable of accepting America is not an idyll, the most mendacious among the hierarchy of denial seeks to reconfigure our past. Be assured, or worried, if preferred, that would exclude references to eradication of the indigenous population. How better to declare the New World an unspoiled Eden awaiting beneficent despoilation if only beasts of the field roamed here?

Men and women who would’ve been forced to wear pink triangles in Nazi Germany won’t have that accessory foisted on them here, no matter how much they unnerve the quivering masculinity of gun nuts. Gays just won’t be openly acknowledged by men unsure of their own sexuality.

Naturally, the place of women will retrench. Even more. Nothing as severe as being reduced solely to breed as in The Handmaid’s Tale. But America will become a man’s world again. Though was it ever truly? In the Willa Catha pioneer America given shorter and shorter shrift as years pass and required reading lists diminish, women were out in the fields beside their men harrowing and harvesting in addition to maintaining family hearths.

But really, in the near future, is it too farfetched seeing public Florida universities issuing Donna Reed Domestic Engineering degrees with minors in compliance/submission?

Nor could state approved educators venture too deeply into the slave trade. Especially the more bestial parts involving how forced servitude incredibly enriched a rarefied few. High cotton, indeed.

Neither could threads from labor movements launched during the Gilded Age through post World War II be explored because that would explain how economic disparities became widespread prosperity. Those aren’t lessons oligarchs preferring to be known as entrepreneurs want stirring future debtors for life.

Americans are the most docile people on earth. Why produce any sparks which could shake our lethargy? Why make us restive? Or even provide suggestions we could live better?

Right-wingers don’t want Americans to aspire, strive, or thrive. They want us to obey them. Preferably to our detriment and their selfish satisfaction.