Monday, February 21, 2011

Watchful Ugliness

A few months before President Obama was elected, I told a group of white friends that things in this country are going to get bad, really bad, especially if Barack Obama was elected.  I admonished my Bridges Group to be watchful and to speak out, given that part of our monthly discussions were in attempts to see each other as human beings and understand our journey in this country, how the isms have affected our worldview.

The events that took place in Egypt reignited something in parts of our country, the silent people who didn't want to speak against the Tea Party and what they were up to with everything from assaulting President Obama's birth to condemning First Lady Michelle Obama for trying to combat childhood obesity, finally decided to speak out when it hit home. Wisconsin is the birthplace of unions and while black men were excluded from this fraternity of manufacturing working class several decades, the very presence of unions meant a chance for fair wages, collective bargaining, manageable workweeks, establishment of child labor laws, watchdog on manufacturing practices, and someone other than big business and the bottom line fighting for the common man.

There have been events that have taken place in this country since 1980 that have been meant to strip away the rights of everyone except white, male, protestant, and wealthy individuals in this country.  The GOP has done everything from redefining rape to saying contraception is abortion to a Georgia legislator proposing that women who endure a miscarriage be investigated for "murder" in case they brought this dastardly act upon themselves. The all-out assault against women and their rights to their body is also an all out assault against people of color.

Women in poor and urban communities are already faced with harsh realities to only have the choice of bearing children taken away from them by the GOPs assault on Planned Parenthood and the health care measures that would have provided affordable care.  The party that proclaims religious superiority and moral absolutes is also very hypocritical in that the only god they worship is greed, power, and money.

The one thing Mitch McConnell said was that it was his mission to make sure President Obama was a one-term president and he has done everything he can, behind the scenes of John Boehner's public crying, to try to make this happen.  I do not think he counted on white, middle class and working class public servants in Wisconsin finally waking up and realizing who is the real enemy.  Maybe they have discovered that it is not and never has been the "unqualified" black or brown man taking their jobs, but the kind like the Kentucky-raised McConnell who only worship wealth and power at any cost.  They want a feudal system again with just the wealthy class and the rest to serve them, much like a white woman recorded in Isabel Wilkerson's book, The Warmth of Other Suns, who said in response to educating black people, if we educate them, then who will clean our houses?  It is a very similar thing with the assault against unions.

If the unions are destroyed, then the wages will be driven down even further.  Unions are one of the last safety nets left to ensure public employees have a chance at a fair life.  The corporations already succeeded in destroying manufacturing and thereby destroying those unions that were the backbone of areas like Flint, Michigan, Detroit, Michigan and in our backyard of Fenton, Missouri.  This has been a methodical and concerted effort on the part of the oligarchy to bring down any chance of regular people to have decency.  Perhaps they want the times of Dickenson again or their real dream, to bring back chattel labor and slavery.  KMOV reported the other day that the KKK is standing on the corner in Missouri recruiting, what is it about scared white men who have to hide under sheets and try to manipulate through fear and violence, and they have been spewing the propaganda that black men are the ones to fear.

I mentioned these things years ago and kept talking to my friends to pay attention to what was going on.  These are times when we do need a revolution and I'm thankful that Egypt gave Wisconsin courage to keep protesting.  I'm looking for the rest of the countrymen to join together, black and white, brown and black, working class, middle class, and thoughtful wealthy to stand against this ugliness.  It is time to take our country back from these fanatics.

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Thoughtful dialogue is appreciated.