“This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal. I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence. Like failure, chaos contains information that can lead to knowledge — even wisdom. Like art.”
I find the state of things in America today disheartening to say the least. I am disgusted by the hate groups that have been emboldened by the president and his hateful rhetoric. This hate and intolerance is obviously nothing new to the world or to America, and will unfortunately never be eradicated, at least in my lifetime. The argument of those who are for memorializing confederate history and claim the confederate flag is not a symbol of racism goes out the window, when it is paraded alongside Nazi flags with the Nazi salute and chants of white power. These are symbols of hatred and racism of the highest degree. I don’t believe the racist history of the United States of America should be erased. All of history should be preserved, and studied, and understood, it is necessary that we never forget the mistakes of the past or we will surely repeat them. We should however not celebrate and memorialize the evil parts of our history, there will always be those who do, but the state is not a person it is the people, and We the People should always look forward toward a future in which we learn from our mistakes, embrace our differences, and understand that our differences and our collective memories are going to be what make us stronger better people. We can never go back!
The hate we are seeing does not represent the majority, just as all African American men are not criminals, not all cops are bigots, and the list of not all, goes on and on and on. The best way I believe to characterize the majority is apathetic, fatigued, and desensitized. We have been inundated with sensational media stories about this horror or that, good news doesn’t sell and we know that. It is important that we look at it objectively, we need to be aware of what’s going on, but it is more important to understand that sensationalism is just that. It’s all a battle to maintain your attention. Many of us have forgotten that we shouldn’t believe everything we see on TV or read on the internet. We instead should talk to each other, learn from each other, most importantly understand that we are not ever going to agree on everything and that is a beautiful thing, because that is where we get compromise. A little compassion and understanding goes a long way.
I believe that freedom of speech is a great and important part of America, even hate speech and especially differing points of view. However it should NEVER include violence or the threat of violence from any side of any disagreement. The right to free speech and PEACEFUL protest should be preserved for all people. There are some very powerful pictures you can find with a quick google search of Keshia Thomas, stepping in to protect the very people who are spewing hate about her. That kind of virtue is honorable and people like her are heroes. Lastly no decent leader should condone violence and hate of any kind, especially toward the people they are charged with leading, and any hate speech, and act of or threat of violence should be met with immediate and complete condemnation. The presidency of Donald Trump has lacked integrity and basic decency from the start, but his reaction here is especially despicable and highly shameful.
“What you do speaks so loudly I can not hear what you say”
Ralph Waldo Emerson