Sunday, February 05, 2023

The Grand American Experiment

Forty years after the Civil Rights struggles of the 1960's and 70s I had become comfortable thinking that even though pockets of racist bullshit still existed, they were the exceptions and not the rule as they were during Jim Crow before desegregation. The heavy lifting had been successful and in a few more decades, people of color or people of different ethnicity would be happily assimilated into the Grand American Experiment. Apparently our nation's racist roots run deeper and are more intractably entrenched than I thought.

My mistake in assuming we would all be each other's brother by this time was on me and my White Naivety. 

By the beginning of the 1980s,  I was confident I had shed the racist attitudes I had gathered growing up. I thought most white people had also. The problem is I did not appreciate the unstated advantages I still enjoyed as a white man. It was maybe 20 years ago I broadened my racial awareness by admitting to myself that just being white gave me a big head start over people of color and recent emigres, legal and illegal. 

Then, 14 years ago, the nation elected a black man President of the United States. Not only was he black, he turned out to be a very good president, one of the greats by my estimation.

The ugly racial undertones that had been simmering under our nation's surface again found the light of day. Frankly, I was shocked and totally caught off guard. I did not think this explosion of such widespread racial hatred was still so well entrenched everywhere I looked. 

The Blacks had for years insisted the job of bringing them into the fold was far from complete. Some even insisted race relations were worse than they had been 30, even 50 years ago. At least back then, the racism was in your face and not the insidious racism that saturates almost everything lurking in the dark corners of our culture and not out in the light of day. It's as ugly as it ever was.

My daughter's experience as a passenger in a car stopped for "driving while black"  10 years ago or so smacked the white apathy right out of me. The obvious racist and confrontational tonality of the stop by a state cop immediately became a non-confrontational every day white person stop once the cop spotted Lis. It reminded me of the time as a child when I watched White guys beat on Black protest marchers in Tallahassee, Florida. 

It was a revelation relived.  

Many Whites are still hating and resenting blacks. And the Whites in charge of most everything were at the least, unconsciously pushing White Privilege even if they did not know it. Now they feel accused unjustly without recognizing the insidious nature of the new style racism. Ever since my epiphany I have used different criteria for trying to understand any news worthy event where people of color, other religions, or ethnicity are involved. Now, instead of assuming prejudice of any kind was not involved, I try to assume nothing and allow the facts as I receive them paint the final picture for me. Call it a positive adjustment of the filter I use to observe the world around me.

The Founding Fathers wrote one Helluva a political document when they produced the U.S. Constitution. The first document that consolidated many of the popular political ideas that were currently floating around as alternatives to the monarchical systems that ruled supreme at that time. It established a constitutional government made up of three separate branches of government that was formed by a democratic process. Individual rights were spelled out and protected by law. Or so the rank and file were fooled into believing.

Problem was, White property owners made up the majority of the people who came to together to form a government.  The poor slobs, or call them the serf class, who did the actual hard work of taming our wild country were bamboozled into believing the Constitution was for them, "the people". It was to a degree, and to be fair, the Constitution placed conditions on the ruling classes and endowed everyone with a minimum of freedoms and protections. 

However, built into the great document that set our rules was legal language that gave the deep pockets the last say. In the beginning only White Male property owners could vote. When determining representation by counting populations,  Blacks were only counted as 3/5ths of a person. Women could not vote. Maybe the most egregious mistake right out of the gate, was the formation of the Electoral College and allowing the individual states to define how their elections were run and how they divided the state into voting districts. 

And though some efforts were made to expand the real democratic power to the people, in the end, real power was, and still is, safely in the hands of the White power network. The plantation and factory owners wanted last say and they got it. Everything the Founders did in the area of elections insured the White Rich Minority maintained control. 

The White Nationalist Racism we deal with today is really no different than the racist policies of America since its inception. The Merchant Class along with their mercantile class who are in charge of day to day operations, are an apolitical group whose main focus is profit; first and foremost. Capitalism runs this nation, ideologies are but window dressing.

Skin color, religion, sexual identity are nothing but current flash points to exploit and use to keep the serfs off their game and worrying about each other rather than the assholes who own and run everything. Until we realize it is economics that separate us and not the color of our skin, we will always be locked in their yokes. 

It is called Capitalism and in the wrong hands can be every bit as oppressive as any other "ism". I do think it is possible to have Capitalism and still enjoy our fair share of the pie. Just right now, the deck is so stacked against all of us. They have us pissing on each other's worn shoes instead of pissing on the Wingtips of the Prince's of Wall Street.

So anyway, a random indignation that crossed my mind this morning has turned into something not so random and more indignant than I intended. And while I have been trying to remember to post positive bull shit, well............ old habits do indeed die hard.

Enjoy your Sunday .............................................


I did not look far and wide for a tune to attach to the post. I thought of Tracy Chapman right away. Here is her song, "America". The lyrics are excellent. I have always liked Tracy's voice and well, enjoy.

A few lyrics from the song:

There was land to take
And people to kill
While you were conquering America
You served yourself
Did God's will
While you were conquering America

The ghost of Columbus haunts this world
'Cause you're still conquering America
The meek won't survive
Or inherit the earth
Cause you're still conquering America

You found bodies to serve
Submit and degrade
While you were conquering America
Made us soldiers and junkies
Prisoners and slaves
While you were conquering America


yellowdoggranny said...

it's a shocker for sure...who knew there was so much hate?
I love Tracy....she's amazing..

so what did you think of Ren/Hi Ren?

The Blog Fodder said...

Found a publication on Twitter called Revolver. Makes Genghis Khan look like a woke Liberal. You need a vomit bucket to read it which was the warning on twitter. These guys are for real and there are enough of them that people need to worry. If they ever get in power they will reinstitute everything Germany had as they institute their own version of final solutions to a fading white majority in America