It’s impossible to ignore what just happened in the home of the brave. People rioting in the streets in major American cities Wednesday night in response to election results is an extreme example. But when I got to work Wednesday around noon, my colleagues were sad, depressed, many actually crying. Good people, rational thinkers, honest American informed citizens, responded quietly to their hopes being dashed by the election results. The first thought that came to my mind was the Amiri Baraka performance poem, “Somebody Blew Up America.”
But my first thought’s words had only a loose connection to reality. America hadn’t really been blown up. Americans’ inflated expectations had been blown up. The accepted idea that business would go on as usual, that corrupt pay-to-play practices were the new norm to be allowed if not embraced, that wholesale purchase of the media and polling operations by a single political machine was no longer troublesome to the American spirit, these were the “things” that got blown up Tuesday night.
To help them through the grieving process, and out of respect for their obvious grief, I sent out one of my poems to some of my colleagues at work and posted it on my poetry blog for friends and regular readers to see here.
But Wednesday’s expressions of grief and disappointment were a side story, and one that would likely pass quickly.
Here are a few of my personal thoughts.
Trump promised during the primaries and during the campaign for the general election to “Make America Great Again.” I personally found nothing wrong with that statement and/or its connotations. In fact, it brought to my mind thoughts of a renaissance, of a rebirth, of making things new, not in a chaotic way, but based on tried and true standards of the past (hence, again). Maybe I was reading too much into it, way too much into it, but every time I saw #MAGA on twitter, I thought “The New American Renaissance.”
Now, what else went wrong? Here is a collection of links, some before and some after the election results:
Finally, all the talk from the media about Trump’s alleged acts of misogyny, racism, etc., just didn’t impress me. I saw it as a kind of mental trick designed to ensnare those who were insecure and afraid. But the talk about corruption and rigging the system resonated with me as I had seen it all play out in the Democratic primary races between Clinton and Sanders.
OK, I need to do some reading for my docent training class. This subject may come up again another day. And here is a haunting song by Roberta Flack, “Business Goes On As Usual.”