Editor’s note: This piece was originally written September 9, 2011.
I feel it necessary to follow up my message on society’s inequalities after the last few days of torrid attacks on the civility of the political system. It must be the temperature that induces the human brain to inexplicably act out and reduce relationships to epithets and push peoples into the throes of victimization once again.
Rising from the end zone at Giants Stadium in New Jersey, the spirit of Sir Hoffa rides again in the Motor City. Without batting an eye, the Hoffa progeny calls a particular political group “Sons of Bitches” and proposes that they “take some of the Sons of Bitches out.” He and his minions will fight to the death if necessary to bring America back to its former greatness. Our President, who was in the house and on the same program, suggests he didn’t hear a thing, saying during his time at bat that those who oppose his programs are un-American and will not get away with either.
Somewhere west of Detroit, a California congress member suggests that the Tea Party members can go “straight to hell.” A congressperson in the middle of Indiana decides he has to give us his two cents worth into the American Dream by public condemnations that “Some of them in Congress…of the Tea Party movement would love to see you and me hanging on a tree.” He continues: “Some of them in Congress….would love to see us as second class citizens and a return to ‘segregation.’” Not to be outdone, on the same day, a radical Islamist group announces that they “will make as much noise as possible during the 9/11 moment of silence.”
And to top it all off, a local front page newspaper commentary suggests that the congressman had the guts to say that which most people feel. This has been an incredible week for an octogenarian like me to have been exposed to this rubbish after spending my entire adult life working to support the equality of the human soul. What is the calling that makes people have the need to feel victimized for an entire lifetime? And not only that, but to bring it to the surface whenever it may be useful for personal gain, either economic or political?
President Obama himself called for a new era of civility in politics in the wake of the attack on Arizona Rep. Giffords. In light of this positive gesture, we have heard nothing from the White House condemning these latest attacks on the political process. It couldn’t be that Mr. Obama sees “you and me hanging on a tree.”
I am told that the Indiana Congressman has claimed that he “had been spit upon” and slurred with the N word before by Tea Party members. What are we to do in the face of these tribulations? How do we converse with the Congressman who believes ”a race war is a more imminent threat than Islamic terrorist plots?”
This is bothersome to me—and should be to all people. There are victims and there are “victims.” As I suggested in prior writings, the disabled have been—and continue to be—targets of this acculturation for centuries. With support, they do not see themselves as victims. They work to move ahead with their lives and to utilize what potentials they have to live normally. It’s hard to fathom going through life with less-than-subtle victimization paranoia. What a waste of time and a life. Someone once told me that every minute you spend on licking your alleged “wounds” is one minute that you can’t spend being happy.
History has verified that civilization has victimized more people for longer periods of time than others. I agree that one minute of slavery is too long. But so are decades of despair. I do think I have learned a bit from the past few days of verbal terror.
I am in the process of gathering my minions from many congregations and making signs to be carried in protest in front of state capitals and congress in Washington. My sign shall say:
NO MORE PYRAMIDS!