Essay, Reflections

“Wake Up, America!!”

This post has been sitting in my Draft folder for about 10 days, but I was unwilling to publish it, waiting instead for something more inspirational to arise.  Nothing has.  And while this essay is angry, sarcastic, and self-centered in the extreme, it appears to be how I really feel these days.  Go figure…

So I’m sharing it now.  Perhaps by doing so, and by owning this crappiness, I will be able to move beyond it.  Or perhaps not.  We shall see soon enough…

 

Wake up, America!!

Stand up!  Be brave!  Exercise your freedom!  Unite!…

Vote!  Don’t vote!  Vote for him!  Vote for her!  Vote for neither of them!  Vote for another!

Protest!  Resist!  Boycott!  Donate!

Protect the environment!  Stop climate change!  Save the rainforest!  Save the children!  Save the bees!

Change your life!  Empower yourself!  Save the world!  Be the Light!

Speak up, America!  Own your flaws!  Admit your racism!  Stop the lies!

You’re all narcissists, obsessed with entertainment!  You’re all slaves of the Matrix system!  Turn off your TV’s; turn on your brains!  Look up from your phones!  Get involved!  Do something, America!  Act now, before it’s too late!

Head spinning, bugles ringing, drums beating in my veins.  Battle cries shoring up my broken heart, the need to act driving every step with urgency and power.  I reach for the door, ready to go, and…

Stop…

Stuck…

“Where exactly am I going?,” I ask myself.  “What exactly am I planning to do?!”

I am poor, but I am white, and somehow that should make a difference.  I am crippled, but I am educated, and somehow that should matter.  I am empowered, self-aware, and empathic, and all of this somehow uniquely qualifies me to act at this time…  And I chose this life, this time to be born, so there’s that as well…

But what exactly am I supposed to do?!

And there is the crux of the problem…

For there are a lot of people “out there” with a lot to say, a lot of opinions, a lot of rhetoric.  But very few who offer real and practical advice about what we should actually do!

I have no extra money to donate, no matter how great the cause.  Besides, I cannot avoid the screaming implications that the pursuit of more (money) makes me a part of the problem, even though those claiming to be working to resolve the problems keep soliciting more…

I could go join a “march for…” something, I suppose, but 5 blocks at a time is about my limit these days.  Do you suppose my hobbling 5 blocks will change the course of history, no matter how much such marching might cost me physically and personally?  I’ll do it, of course, if it will help, because I live to serve.  But someone please explain to me how this is supposed to work…  I hobble along, at great personal sacrifice, and hope that someone, somewhere, in some corporate office, will be so impressed with my effort that they will call an immediate board meeting to rescind their evil ways…?

I could go join the front lines in North Dakota (or anywhere else that peaceful prayer is standing up to corporate greed).  But the police and soldiers there are armed with clubs, guns, dogs and pepper spray, and they are using them with immunity.  Suppose I could afford to get there.  Suppose I could get my lame ass on the cold earth to sit in a prayer circle.  Chances are, I could not get up by myself when we were through.  And if those militarized forces ordered us to go, I could not physically comply.  So then what?  I get beat up, bitten, broken or bulldozed over?  And what have I accomplished now?  It might be “noble,” I admit, but ultimately futile in the end…

Enough whining, Lisa!  Focus!

Ok, so here’s my thing.  I cannot “fix” what’s wrong with my country, and what’s wrong with my world.  I have no power, at least not in a broader context.  I can only exercise control over my own life, priorities and actions.  So what am I going to do?

Someone mentioned to me recently that blaming “Americans” for all that is wrong is a lot like blaming the victim for the crimes committed against them.  I resisted that thought, knowing as I do, that we “can’t be victims unless we choose to be.”  It’s been my mantra for many years.  And yet…

And yet, we are all “victims” of the same system in a sense.  We are so deeply indoctrinated into it that even if we see its limitations, we cannot see a way out.  We have no power.  And its not just the powerful preying upon us, but our fellow powerless neighbors seeking some control over their lives.

Explain to me, for example, why thieves would break into my home in a poor city neighborhood to steal a $400 TV that took me 18 months to pay for?  Why are they tempted to break into my 9 year old car that I’m still going to be paying for 3 years from now?  The garage just down the street (where I spent another $600 this year to get my car through a state inspection again) is empty at night.  Why break in here??

Why not go stand on the side of the expressway, or in the grocery store parking lot, and bum a dollar for a bus ride to the rich part of town?  There you could steal a car, break into a home and take whatever you want, knowing they have the resources to replace said items before the insurance check (from their good coverage/low deductible insurance) even comes in the mail?  Why do poor people steal from poor people instead of from rich people?

Why do those gun toting, mad bomber types prefer to kill “innocent” people in a shopping mall, school or nightclub, rather than targeting politicians, corporate executives and bankers?  Do they honestly believe that killing myself and my grandkids before getting themselves killed is going to change anything? Or punish anyone who truly needs punishing?!  How does that serve any purpose?

I’m not talking about terrorist organizations which are no more than fronts for those already in power.  I’m talking about individuals acting out of rage and frustration.  Think about it!  If you took out a few corporate executives, or bankers responsible for fleecing you, destroying the environment and enslaving you, you’d actually be serving your fellow citizens!

If you chose to target the actual “bad” cops, rather than all cops, most of whom take their oath to “protect and serve” their communities seriously, you would be much more likely to end corruption and police brutality.  It’s not like the names of the “guilty” cops aren’t out there.  Target them, and so discourage other cops from becoming like them, rather than discouraging all cops from protecting we the people…

I understand that “revolution” without a plan for what comes after invites even more power hungry, tyrannical overlords into power, but sitting here whining about how bad things are accomplishes nothing!  And yet…

And yet I honestly cannot see what is expected of me at this time!  I try to speak truth as I understand it, but the only ones who hear me are those who already believe what I say.  I look for ways to take action, but those actions accomplish little to nothing in the big picture scenarios.  I am NOT powerless, and yet I cannot seem to change the current course of history as it unravels before my disbelieving eyes!…

And so…

Head spinning, bugles ringing, drums beating in my veins.  Battle cries shoring up my broken heart, the need to act driving every step with urgency and power.  I reach for the door, ready to go, and…

Head off to work for someone else, to collect my paycheck and pay my bills.  Gotta keep the fossil fuel hog car running so I can earn that money, so I can eat, live indoors with heat and electric, so I can continue to support the system that enslaves me.

And when it all gets to be too much, I will turn on that TV I just finished paying for, or watch some cat videos on my phone, or read a good fantasy novel on my e-reader…  And for a few minutes, at least, maybe I can forget that I’m supposed to be doing something…

Go back to sleep, America; it was just another false alarm…

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18 thoughts on ““Wake Up, America!!”

  1. I read the comments before putting my paddle in the water. This is going upstream. First, where do people get the idea that “free speech” is a “birth right”? Is there such a thing as a birth right? I doubt it. There are “rights” purchased with blood, power, lies, claims. All purchases, not rights. We have no “rights” – we have what we can claim and hold on to, and that’s it.
    I don’t see your rant as being aimed at America (whatever that be, I still haven’t figured it out, however much I hate the way it exercises power globally) but rather at yourself. You feel powerless and you look about to see why. Who or what is chaining you to the wheel? Who has the key to to the ankle and wrist locks?
    I’ve “seen” you on the spiritual path, travelling above and beyond any place your body can go. I’ve heard you, or at least, read you. “They” say that what we are the most afraid of is our own power. I’m not sure I buy that, but I feel this from you. You see, I think that what “they” mean is that our power resides in our mind and to exercise that power we need to let go of the physical aspect of what we are.
    We don’t need to shuck the shackles, we need to shuck the body; to live between worlds, recognizing the body’s attachments (slavery) to a system that allows it to survive, just like cattle rely on the farmer to feed them and they have to trust the farmer even if they could know that the only reason he feeds them is to fatten them for the slaughter. Our problem is… we know this. We serve to be slaughtered in the end, and we object; we resent. Going in reverse: we hate, we are angry, we live in fear, we turn on each other because we can’t kill the farmer or we won’t eat. That’s the mission statement. That’s the slogan. We participate in The Hunger Games because we “need” the Capitol, the Hegemon, to rule over us or something terrible will happen. What? Doesn’t matter what, something terrible will happen. And when it happens anyway we don’t make the connection: that the farmer is a damned liar; that all farmers are the same, and our purpose is the same regardless of which farm we’re raised on.
    What does the spirit/mind being “do” knowing this? Rise above all of it. How? There is no “how” – it’s different for every individual. We can share our struggles, and we can demonstrates what results we may have but they cannot serve as guides for anyone serious enough to walk between the worlds. When I look back on my days of activism when I drew my spirit and mind down into a body/brain unit so I could function socially and politically, I shudder at the enormous waste of energy I went through dragging spirit and mind through the mud trying to change the world. Such foolishness. I didn’t need to change the world, I needed to free myself, to teach myself how to fly and experience the cosmos, and when I needed to interact with this world, to walk between the worlds, never losing track of what I had freed myself to become, never again to be enslaved to this deadly Matrix.
    “Walking between the worlds” – Gregg Braden capitalized on the idea, calling it “the science of compassion” which is an absurdity, but he makes some good points. It is important that any evolving consciousness become aware of this “place” or non-place, and learn to take advantage of it.
    Some thoughts for you. Hopefully they won’t confuse the issue even more.

    Liked by 1 person

    • *applauding loudly* Bravo, Sha’Tara! Bravo!!

      Yes, yes, yes…

      Ok, then, in order, I guess. If we are born with the ability to speak, then we are “free” to speak our minds as we will. We are also free to face the consequences of such acts in whatever society we are born into. But I agree that “rights” are purchased; that was well put…

      And you are right about my anger being self-directed and based on a feeling of powerlessness; I’ve used the term “impotent rage” several times today. And I am not alone in that feeling, I know. For the past 2 weeks, at least, I’ve heard myself saying, multiple times each day, “what the fuck is wrong with people?!!” But I think I’m beginning to figure it out…

      We cannot fix what is wrong. We cannot truly change anything here. We are all fucked! Period. No matter how many noble and just causes exist, we cannot assume that “right” will win over “wrong” in the end. And we cannot tip the scales in favor of any of these righteous battles…

      All we can do (actually DO) is let go…

      And let the people fuck themselves. For that is what they are determined to do. And I, myself, cannot save them, even if I wanted to…

      Transcendence… Ascendence…
      Whatever one calls it, the result is the same: we rise above the chaos, or we sink into it, as we choose.

      But choose we must…

      Or so I have been led to believe… lol!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. That in essence is what I meant to convey. I think the species, at 7.3(?) billions now is sensing its own demise. Subconsciously it realizes it has surpassed its naturally mandated limits to growth and its technological society is running out of miracles to continue the exponential growth insanity. This is the German military machine in 1944. The “V-3’s” aren’t going to push the Allies to surrender. The plunge into a long-predicted “winter” has begun. It’s fitting (and inevitable) that it would manifest most clearly in the world’s greatest military and money power. As I’ve been saying – kind of like whistling Dixie in the wind – for decades is, it’s time for individuals to find themselves, claim themselves, cull themselves from the herd and head out into the wilderness of self-empowerment. There are some “terrible” side-effects of course. First, you develop a sense of humor. Then you find lost hours once spent watching TV which you can use to exercise, or read what you choose to. Then you discover you eat way less food, and you don’t need meat anymore. You get healthier while your same age people go the other way and die… hmmm. You no longer need to argue any point with anyone convinced of their own rightness. You discover that your own company is often the best to keep. You spend way less money on programmed entertainment. You don’t engage politics except as a kind of childish amusement. You feel lighter mentally and physically. You can see the future, you know it isn’t friendly but it doesn’t frighten you. Need I go on? Nay, it’s there, if anyone wants it.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. inkbiotic says:

    I identify with this totally, and I love your passionate writing. Knowing so much about the world and how damaged it is, but also knowing that there is nothing you can do to change it: That’s a very modern problem and there isn’t really a solution – chip away a little making whatever changes you can, hide from it with cat videos, rail against the insanity of it, none of these are really solutions. Humans are so smart and there are so many many of us, you’d have thought we’d have worked it out by now.

    Maybe if enough people keep searching for answers like you have here, then maybe we can figure it out.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Powerful Lisa. Raw power. Elemental rage, against the whole stupidity that Human is inclined to indulge in. No one group gets away with it. ‘We’ are all fools folks, don’t think your corner is free of it.
    So what to do?
    Remember you are Lisa, and you can make your own choices. Do not assume because someone told you, it is so; reach your own conclusion, what you feel with your heart and mind. We are told by pundits and revolutionaries (of the fashionable sort) to question Authority- well question them as well. (That includes me; ‘cas I’m a kind of negative-revolutionary; someone tells me to rebel, I’ll ask ‘Why? What’s in it for you?’-so I might not be a good role model- I loves a good paradox)
    Then embrace Compassion, Respect and Tolerance. Do not give into the Hate-Mongers not matter where they come from. If you wish to take one small action; send them an old-fashioned letter and tell them ‘You make me feel ashamed to be an …. (add your comment, depending who your writing to).
    Remember above all, You Are Lisa, and no one can take that from you.
    Rock on and fly free as you can Lisa.
    Your friend in social anarchy
    Roger

    Liked by 2 people

      • Hi Lisa.
        I will catch up on that as we used to say in the UK Civil Service, Promptly!
        I’ve been spitting white hot nails over the way the UK press and Politicians have been handling the big Brexit issue of late.
        Wrote a whole polemic over it!
        Take care Lisa.
        The world needs you.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I know about your most recent rant. I read it. I just haven’t commented on it yet because I wanted to reread it when I could focus on what you were actually saying, rather than on where your words were leading me… lol!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hi Lisa.
        Yeh, currently in one of my polemic moods…(I didn’t start it this time, The UK Press set me off)
        Criss-crossing with your own posts (thanks again for the mention). The way I see ‘social anarchy’ is the refusal to be defined by groups or labels.
        So I’ve fallen out with my natural political home The UK Labour Party over its failure to control its own ‘hate’ wing.
        I am happy to count folk who will vote for Trump amongst those on WP I exchange views with, because they have taken the time to explain where they are coming from.
        There are folk who are Wiccan or New Age whose wish to embrace peace and tolerance I support. (Catholic y’see)
        I choose US Christian religious rock on my Spotify list not because it is the very best music in the world, it will annoy a wing of UK atheism which is both intolerant of religion and America-phobic (ooh naughty me!).
        I also embrace the works of Marx
        (Groucho that is, not Karl).
        And count ‘fashionable’ media high-profile revolutionaries as of zero credibility.
        And that’s just for starters!!

        Like

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