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Sunday, February 3, 2008

Fear of Drowning

This is a few years old, but still applies. It was the first opinion piece I wrote for iBrattleboro. I was still working in the Meat Dept. at the Co-op. Ah, memories...

When I spoke to Lise and Chris about writing for iBrattleboro, many issues crowded my head until none could come out intact. Then Thanksgiving came and I was too tired from Turkey Hell to do anything but drag my old white ass home and sleep enough to go back and do it again 'til the turkeys were gone. Now it's the week after Turkey Day and I have some local bug that's running around, bringing fever and coughing and pain. I still can't get any thoughts in order enough to make a cohesive column and I'm starting to think that perhaps those days are gone. There will be no more well-constructed theses coming out of my head or mouth, ever again. Each time I launch on one train of thought, some other piece of horrible news or a realization comes that leaves me speechless, and I fall silent. Is this happening to anybody else? Are we at total saturation point every day now, just going from one outrage to another like a cosmic pinball game?
Well, for God's sakes, I hope it doesn't make us all go silent for long. Too much crap keeps happening and the shit pile on each aware head is way too high; and without sharing what we know and have realized, the shit will engulf and choke us. In me, this fear of drowning has made me start sputtering, \"Lies!\" It's hard to enumerate beyond that, but it's a start. If that's all I can get out, at least it's something truthful. These days, lies fall around us like cold rain and it's hard to keep our umbrellas up.
I had a conversation with my 55 year old brother this past weekend. I was telling him about what was happening in Miami at the FTAA [Free Trade Area of the Americas] protests and about the SOA [School of the Americas] protest. He launched into questioning who I was associating with these days and that I sounded like a socialist. I asked him what was wrong with opening his mind and told him that he should know that these things are going on. He responded that he just goes to work and keeps his bills paid. I said, that's what we're all doing, but some of us can also shoot our mouths off and tell everybody else what's going on.
In his area of Pennsylvania, folks get the three big networks' news (unless they're cabled). That's where most of them get uninformed. I sent him to INDYMEDIA.ORG since he's on the internet. Since I'm still not on the Internet, I hope he'll have news for me when we speak again around Christmas.
Light little fires, man. If you can't put it all out there for someone to get it, refer them to where they can get it for themselves. Tell them to read \"Big Lies\" or \"Dude, Where's My Country?\" or \"Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them.\" We've stopped thinking, we've stopped questioning, we've stopped caring. It's time we all got aware so we don't get fooled again, so we don't lose our rights, so we don't live in a fearful shower of lies.

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