Yesterday I watched a composite video with analysis of the insurrection at the Capitol on Jan 6. It was disturbing, to say the least.
I’ve been trying to figure out my feelings of disaffection, looking for the source, and as I watched it (link below) I realized that they began when Trump won the election and reached full fruition on January 6. That day I expected drama in DC because it was the day the votes of the Electoral College would be accepted. Watching that on my phone as I did yard work, I was stunned when suddenly it turned from the obnoxious verbal posturing I expected to something very different.
I have a mind, personality, that automatically tries to see things from the other guys’ perspective. That “Walk a mile in his moccasins” thing hung in our kitchen and the Bible verse about not judging the mote when one has a beam was hammered into me. I’m grateful for that, but I’ve also learned that isn’t necessarily how the rest of the world operates. The reality is that we must live with people we don’t see eye-to-eye with. It’s just how it is and the mote, moccasin and beam has made that pretty easy for me over the course of my life. But now I realize that day, those events, pushed me over the edge.
I can’t do that any more. I live in a broken country.
I’ve been watching the Hemingway documentary on PBS. I hesitated because I like Hemingway and during the 80s — 00s he was pretty much discarded as a good writer because of his (alleged) misogyny and racism. Since I spent my career in academia, I knew about this and stopped standing up for the guy. I figured his work spoke for him and he didn’t need me. We are all people of our era, inescapably so. Since it was Hemingway’s “job” to sell books (and himself) he wasn’t going to be anything BUT a man of his moment even as he redefined fiction writing for the whole world. I believe that it’s the work of an artist that matters. Whatever life we have, we have. The moccasin thing applies to dead people as well as living, IMO. So, when the documentary came out, I wasn’t sure I wanted to watch it. I have been surprised in a good way.
In the second episode, the documentary takes Hemingway to Spain where he covered the civil war. The photos are harrowing and his words even more. As I watched and listened, I thought about my country. Those fucks who stormed the capitol were hoping to start a civil war. They believed they were the vanguard of a revolution. They were ready, willing and able to kill their fellow countrymen to keep Trump in office. They believed they were upholding the Constitution by violently violating it.
I don’t know much about the Spanish Civil War, but I know a little now than I did. One of the “players” in that nightmare was Joseph Stalin who sent operatives to Spain to “support” the resistance. The bad guy was Franco (I knew that) and the “philosophy” Franco represented was fascism. He was supported by Mussolini. So like a sinister chess game, these two bullies maneuvered the people of Spain into killing each other. It went very very far, so far that Stalin (who LOVED killing people) tortured and killed many of the Spanish resistance that he purported to support because their Communism wasn’t “pure” enough.
So yesterday Biden sanctioned Russia for cyber interference in our election.
I don’t have an answer to anything. But watching the video yesterday which was a composite of footage from the actual riots, recordings of law enforcement and forensic analysis of the events, I realized that the source of my disaffection isn’t Covid. Finally it registered. My heart is broken and I don’t want to live in the Untied States of America.