And this is – of course – the space for the all encapsulating subtitle, very important for the SEO-grabbing search bots
Have you ever felt that you had so much to say, yet didn’t know how? So many topics to choose from, so much injustice around the world that fuels your anger? Yet while you’re all wound up about this and that, you also feel that the double-cold your battling is leaving you powerless and void of energy, You feel as if you’d much rather spend another day in bed, under the warm comforter, sleeping away illness, misery and the Trump presidency, all in one cure?
Sadly, life, which means getting up at six thirty in the morning to get your child out of bed and into clothes so he looks presentable at school doesn’t work that way, particularly not when he proudly wears those new pajamas you bought, in the style of a fire fighter uniform, complete with reflecting bands on arms and legs. It was a hard struggle and necessitated the need of a little white lie to coerce him into a pair of jeans and a sweat shirt. Afterwards, he ate some breakfast and I made my husband some coffee, while catching up on more misery in the news and online. More senseless death, more terrorism and this feeling of what is the world coming to?
It feels to me as if we are in the middle of a huge cultural war, a war fought between the past and the future, a war between white privilege on one hand, with promises of a revival of the fifties post-war economic boom and seeming social peace and the modern world the other hand, a more “brown” world, where people of all color and creed live side by side. I totally understand that for some, it is a frightening concept. In Russia, the rich, who have always been rich, dream of a world that resembles that of the nineteen fifties Soviet Union, where everyone had a job, there was no unemployment and the rich and powerful ruled, just as the czars had before the revolution. The only difference was that the czar was not a Romanov, but an apparatchik. In Europe, leaders of the far left and far right also dream of a past that really didn’t exist, ever, except in childhood memories or stories from our parents and grandparents, happy vacation pictures. In America, the Trump regime dreams of June Cleaver at her stove and wants to bring back those “Happy Days“. Yet they weren’t as happy as Hollywood portrayed them. Why else did we have so much terror back then? The IRA in England, the Red Brigades in Italy, the Baader-Meinhof Group in Germany? Why did we have so much social unrest? Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King Jr., or Malcolm X to name a few? Why did we have riots and an entire generation’s uproar against the world of June Cleaver? 1968!
Trump, Putin, Le Pen, there’s one in every country. Some smarter than others, some more successful than others, but they all dream of taking their countries back to a time and place that never really existed. Too many were excluded, to many were not part of the dream. Millions starving in Africa, exploited by the fast-growing west, millions in the middle-east barely getting by while the riches of their oil-rich soils ended up on tankers west-ward bound. Millions starving in China, India, while their governments tried to counter-effect the remnants of a colonial rule with different measures that left the people wanting. But June Cleaver’s smile was perfect, as was her hair and front yard.
I look at Happy Days or Leave it to Beaver and I wonder: where are the blacks, the Latinos, the Asians, the Arabs? Or the indigenous Peoples of America? The Gays and the Lesbians? If that is the society Trump wants, then I say good luck, because America will never be like that again, because it never was! The America of today is that of Rogue One, and although I haven’t had a chance to see it yet, the mere fact that the nazis are going bonkers over a colorful cast makes me hopeful for a better future, at least in Hollywood.
I don’t know were our nations are heading. It seems that for now, we’re taking the proverbial step back, after taking two steps forward in the past fifty years of my life. 1968 was the promise of social change, of a better world, for everyone, including women’s rights in relationships. There will, I guess, always be a struggle between the past and the future, between “conservatives” and “progressives”. However, I am hopeful that given the way the world is developing, that we are going to win this struggle, too. The forceful reactions to the first days of the Trump regime are leaving me slightly optimistic. The rule of the white heterosexual man is over. Donald Trump may very well be the last of its kings.
In other matters. Last week I helped bring down a catfish, a woman who impersonated a man in order to sell books. Like I said last week, it is perfectly okay to use a pen name, even a pen name of a different gender. Others have done it before, out of choice or need. I mention Karen Blixen’s “Isak Dinesen” as an example. However, Mrs Perez went far beyond simply using a pen name. She pretended to be a man, she pretended to be a married gay man on top of that, faked a heart attack (!!) and spread hatred against women and minorities on her Facebook author page. Why she did that we’ll never know. There is a part of me that feels sorry for her, for her need to have to go to such lengths to earn a buck or two. I also believe that unconsciously, she tried to be found out. Why else would she leave bread crumbs from her alternate persona “Byron Rider” all the way to her home address in Pasadena, TX, where she resides with husband and daughter? All we had to do was follow the trail, from Rider’s Amazon page to her het profile of Cait Perez, to Ms Perez’s website, where she had listed her home address. Not the smartest con, but maybe a desperate cry for help?
Sadly, when such frauds are discovered, people are hurt. Fans who had purchased books and who had invested emotionally in the author (who turned out to be someone entirely different) were left wondering if there is anyone out there who is who they pretend/say they are. People who had been genuinely shocked by her feigned outrage and the ensuing “heart attack” were in shock (as some of the comments on my post last Friday show.) Unfortunately, the next step up is a witch hunt for others, and authors and artists who are on the fringes, thematically or in terms of their convictions, become victims of suspicion, and I’ve already seen more than one post and e-mail wondering about him or her. I have no doubt that there will be more Byrons out there. But let’s not turn this into the Spanish Inquisition. Like I said Friday, don’t trust everything you see, check your sources. But on the other hand, if we, as a society lose that basic trust in each other, we are only making things worse, and will ultimately aid those who stand to profit the most from distrust. This is particularly true for those of use who belong to a minority, or two.
So let’s not. Let’s keep faith in humanity.
Have a good week!