June 7, 2020-
I got back to Home Base at 10:30, this morning, after a restful night in Flagstaff (keeping obedient to our lingering statewide curfew) and a pleasant breakfast of smoked trout and gouda omelet, at a lovely little place called Downtown Diner. Never let it be said that our rising generations are without a work ethic. Every one of the teens and twenty-somethings who served us, this weekend, was working nonstop.
Now, to the title of today’s post. I read, this evening, of the murder of a Santa Cruz County sheriff’s deputy, in the line of duty. It had nothing to do with a protest, of any kind-and was apparently done by a mentally ill man, who had easy access to firearms. For sharing this news, I found myself painted as spreading “an Alt-Right trope”, as the phrase, “All Lives Matter” was part of the article (as was “Black Lives Matter”, in a sympathetic way).
There is a cost to denying others their humanity. For centuries, it has been the purview of an elite which has prided itself on the maintenance of power, wealth and “tradition”, to the detriment of those regarded as the “lower classes”. The deaths of peasants, and later, of slaves, were viewed by the high and mighty as mere trifles.
Those lower classes learned this lesson, all too well. The miasma of bloodletting, during the French and Russian Revolutions, was the natural consequence of those centuries of rule by feudal mindset. The rulers would point to St. Paul’s Letter to the Romans, and the peasantry were cowed, for a time. When things became too much to bear, the cherry-picked passages from the Bible no longer held currency. Unleashed, the long-suffering masses lashed out, in every direction.
The same is true today. Decades, if not centuries, of being told to find one’s place, and stay in it, have worn those who have heard such drivel, to a frazzle. There has been progress, and there will be more, in the area of building a just society. The trick, however, is to not, as Pete Townshend warned us, in his song, “Won’t Get Fooled Again”, let “the parting on the left” become “parting on the right”.
There is elitism among conservatives, and there is elitism among progressives. There are people living in deprivation, on both sides, as well. If there is to be genuine progress, the recognition of the enemy being our mindsets, our egos, has to be kept front and center. Otherwise, those at whom one looks down one’s nose will bring about changes that will serve to keep the cycle of disparity going.
We are all in this together.