Losing Hope

June 19, 2015

I don’t know. I’m at a loss.

I read, first thing in the morning yesterday, the story about the shooting in Charleston. But then, before getting even a moment to find out what happened, and still dealing with the after effects of a bad headache, had to mobilize for a morning baseball game, and then an afternoon game, and then had a whole bunch of stuff to do to catch up, and by then we were at the end of the day and I hadn’t heard word one about the murders. I called my mom to check in and we talked about it. She’d been watching coverage all day and was weepily despondent.

I’ll tell you this. As she nears the end of her life, I can say with certainty–and she knows it too–she’s not going to see any movement toward any positive change in her lifetime. We’ve gone mad and there is no fucking fix on the horizon.

The Charleston church murders are a double whammy: it’s unleashed hate and deep, sick racism, and it’s also a gun issue.

People are killing beautiful people. That is what’s happening. And we don’t care enough as a society to do anything about it. We could. But we don’t. Can’t, won’t. I don’t know. NRA. Money. Power. Votes.

We’d surely have addressed the gun issue if we, as a country, had cared enough after the massacre of 20 little kids in their classroom.

The majority of people don’t care enough about race or guns.  A facebook friend named Janet said it well:

“So far we tolerate it, otherwise we would have changed something. We are all in this together. Either the flag waving, foot stomping, gun toting, racist masses are a majority and hold the power, or they are a minority and we are weak. Feeling pessimistic.”

I agree and am feeling the pessimism. Not expecting movement in my lifetime, either.

People are writing all over the internet very eloquently about race. Glad for that. This is a conversation that needs to be going on everywhere all the time until everyone gets it. Including me, everyone. All of us. With our kids.

Especially our kids. Kids don’t start life hating. They don’t know from race. They are warm hearted creatures there for the loving. There for the molding. In our culture, they learn racism. The haters teach their kids to hate. It’s perpetuated in the culture in overt and subtle ways. It’s not going away until we see this and talk about it and institute it. And un-institute it (like removing confederate flags for one obvious example).

People are writing about this, which is good, of course. I’m also supposing it falls on deaf ears (the fox followers of the world). You’re either an open hearted, loving person who cares about people of all colors, countries and causes, or you’re a dick. And if you’re the latter, no amount of eloquence and common decency is going to compel you.

I’m just disgusted. Sorry.

I’m beyond disgusted about a short clip I saw of a fox interview (don’t ask), in which they wrung their hands over the horrible events of Wednesday night, but wagged their fingers at viewers, cautioning them not listen to those who would characterize this as a hate crime. This is not a race issue, they said. It’s an attack on Christians.  Christianity under siege again. This trio, sitting on a couch together in sexy clothes, then went on to say the pastor should have had a gun. We should be relaxing gun laws so law abiding people can have guns on hand to protect themselves.

What do you do with that? People believe this. People I love believe this. I have a family member who believes everyone should have a gun. Not the right to have a gun, but should have one and carry it to protect themselves.

Imagine that scenario.

I can feel physically ill at the very idea that somebody around me is concealing a gun (never mind everybody). The instability factor is everywhere. Emotional humans are a fact of humanhood. Emotional humans and guns do not mix with good results. One sporting event or one instance of road rage is all the evidence you need. Giving people killing capacity at their finger tips is nothing but insanity. You’ll never, ever convince me that civil society can ever happen when people are carrying guns. It’s laughable (cryable more like). 

And I don’t know what all the candidates are saying right now.. can only imagine what the two Ricks are saying… but Jeb Bush was quick to go on record saying he wasn’t sure the shooting was racially motivated. Now that, folks, is a total lack of moral leadership. He, like Hillary I’m sorry to say, proceeds with tender-footed caution on absolutely every issue and is totally beholden to his handlers to fully vet, based on polls, every publicly-stated opinion on any subject that ever comes out of his mouth. Do I like pie? Can’t even respond human to human to the murder of nine black people sitting quietly in a bible study by a self-proclaimed white supremacist.  Has to carefully craft each and every statement in response and ensure his base is not offended. Too bad his base is so stupid. 

Hardly the candidates’ fault, I guess; it’s politics today..it’s what you have to do to get elected? We are doomed. 

There is no hope for this country. We are in denial about race. We are soul crushingly stupid when it comes to guns. And our leaders can’t have opinions that aren’t market tested.

We are seriously doomed.