Jan 07, 2021 Letters
I never, ever, thought that matters would come to this point in the United States of America. Here is a situation where the Vice President of the United States has to be hidden away. And I would say, it is from his own president. The world has gone mad; at least the American version of it has.
I suppose that, in the end, when things are brought under control, some wag is going to conclude that democracy prevailed. But at what price? What enduring bitterness and rancor and hate, as fueled by a president gone mad? Having suspected that things went too far or that he pushed them too far, or some sane remaining head knocked some sense into his, there was that belated call for calm from a president who has lost all of his marbles. I had said this before in different ways; perhaps, I will be believed now. It still feels eerie, like a death’s hand around the back of the neck.
The question is from here to where? Mitch McConnell, who waited too long, and acted too late, now talks of the damage to any overturning of the elections. Some horses are out of the barn of tight control, and they are scattered. Beyond leadership appeal. Beyond the rhymes of reasonable men. Now I have a sense of what it was like to be at Charlestown, SC in 1861, with fevers at overflowing pitches. One man talked about an ‘attempted coup’ for which he should be locked up or muzzled to prevent that kind of irresponsible talk. A lot of damage has been done to the Republic; a great many citizens burdened with how to continue. Where to leave politics behind, and from which point to start living and with purposes in mind?
There is despair in the air, and it is all the way from here. I do not give a damn about the president. He will go or be made to go. It is the American Way. But he has left a lot of detritus in his wake, even though he is not full gone just yet. It didn’t have to be this way, except that those around him in the White House and the Senate did not have either the courage or moral conviction to face truth in the face and come out swinging on its behalf. To remind all: I did not vote for Mr. Biden, I didn’t vote at all. But Mr. Biden has won fair and square, and for me that is all that matters, and the end of the line and all the other clashing storylines.
Of course, life is never so cut and dried; nor does it follow the contours that we simpler folks set as its fixed perimeters. Not too long ago, my heart bled for this beloved Guyana. Now I am forced to do it all again for that other half, which is America. At this rate, I will not have blood nor tears to shed anymore. Soon enough all feelings could be gone, as there has been one psychic savaging after another, and there is only so much that can be absorbed.
It just goes to show how one man, be he stupid or imbecilic or reckless, can create so much chaos, introduce so much danger, destroy so much worked for and so much gained. The reputation of America is now in tatters and it may never recover to the pride of perch that it held so dearly and for so long. Who would it dare to offer advice and counsel? Who would deign to listen? And it may not be refused respectfully, either. And it is all because of one man, and those other men and women who were too cowardly to stand up and say: no more. Not now. Not tomorrow. Not ever. Well, it is a little late in the day for any of that now. I remember Aeschylus and one of my favorites: ‘And even in our sleep pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God.
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