As Racist As We Want To Be, Huh?

Thursday, January 19, 2006 at 04:06 AM

Monday was Dr King's birthday. You wouldn't know it with some....or do we?

The question so many have asked, considering the man's work and legacy: Have things really improved, race-wise?

Well, hop a 737 into South Carolina, sports fans, and the answer isn't just "no", it's also "You mean it ever happened???"

Since Monday, one thing's become most clear: I am a tad stunned at the racism all around me, and the bad thing takes a day celebrating the life work of an insightful human being to drag the Klan supporters out into the open.

Since Monday, early AM, here's a sampling of the comments, all worthy of being fine additions to the KKK Lifetime Membership:

"Oh, it's just another excuse for those [guess what word goes here] to have a day off!"

"Why don't we celebrate [obscure date in history benefitting the Confederacy goes here] instead? Wouldn't that be fair?"

Pointless, I tell myself, so utterly pointless. I've long since given up reminding these clueless rednecks, "Um, you fuckers lost, remember?"...when they harp on about the Confederate flag stuff, or remember Ft Sumter, goes on and on and on and on...

Then, the AM radio commentaries, of course, assault my ears. Oh, these freepers, these neocon messengers, you think I'm fooled that easily? Got that new swastika armband on your sleeves yet? Does seem to work for you, eh?

What civil rights, I sigh so hard. Here? South Carolina? Where our elected smirk at the idea? Where we still can't convince the state to get rid of that eyesore?

Maybe it's me. A redneck by bloodline, yes, but by thought? Everything Doctor King said was pure logic from the get-go: Even genetics has proven...there is no such thing as race. Never was. Somebody made it all up.

Too, why the insistance...on keeping alive the idea of a losing argument? Those idiot good-ole-boys, always talking about the old, old days of the Confederacy...

"You lost, recall, do we not?", no, even at sounding like Yoda, my words go nowhere. Too important to believe in a failed ideal, like so many other and current failures: False nationalism, "ownership society", on and on and on.

And we ask ourselves, well, those of us who call ourselves progressives, where exactly did Il Dubya get all his support? Answer: Racist asswipes, they're part of his master plan, duh.

Worse, it's spreading, changing, getting nastier: Muslims are treated like dirt, and oh, dear God, don't you dare mention gays or lesbians in this state! Why, that's agin the word!!!!

Worse, the line of separations has deepened: A dear friend, she's yes, African-American told me... "They hate everyone now, old man, they really do. Not just us. Everybody. Unless you're white, a man and filthy rich, you ain't nobody anymore."

She's insightful, I nod slowly, and it becomes clear: The land of the free and the home of the brave has entered a dark period. That haunting poem... "And there was no one left to speak up for me."...starts to ring hard with a truth to it.

Hitler wept to the press at the ashes of the Reichstag: "This is the work of communists, Jews, the homosexuals, the ENEMIES OF GERMANY!!"

Our mindless government sings the same song, oh, the lyrics are a little different, but it's the same crap, same licks: It's okay to hate, really, go right ahead.

It's all part of the game. Keep us busy infighting among ourselves, not to realize who's really screwing the pooch, eh? Is that the idea, then? Is that part of the New American Empire? Keep us battling inside the ranks, keeping racism alive just we don't notice the skies turning darker? The slow rise in ocean temps? That's it okay to go to another land and kill thousands for their resources?

No wonder so many of this racist assholes hated Doctor King: He said what was genuinely true, of the real reason for human existence. Racism wastes our time, creates insanity, war is a stupid notion. We should, instead, line up as one being, link our arms and, joy, wonder. Friends? Family, of course.

But, that's dreaming. Like Lennon. Like Jesus. Like King.

And those dreams stand in the path of empire.

Now, I think I understand.