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8/14/17

One

How did we get to this?
It never went away.
Hate recedes and surges. We feel its hand on our shoulders, again.

The off grid prefab is an hour-ish south of Charlottesville. When we talk amongst ourselves, we reassure each other with, "But they weren't from here, it wasn't like those were local people, those Nazis came from states away..."

Then you hear a friend-of-a-friend, local, chiming in that this weekend in Charlottesville will be marked as where "...the second civil war began..."
Do I detect glee?
Listen closely, and realize we are all one friend-of-a-friend away from hate.
My neighbor's flag on our road.
I'm sure they're nice and don't realize
the mistrust and ill will their symbols
are making those on our road feel towards them.
Or... maybe it is intended? We'll never know,
because we don't want to know them.


For fans of history and architecture, here are some thoughts that come to mind:
Reading Club:
  • To erase monuments implies we are no better than Russia or the Taliban.

    HOWEVER that does not mean we can not consider the past from today. Take those statues where we realize they do NOT represent our values and put them in a museum OR leave them (and buildings built as monuments), but with signs adding context as my friend Christy Coleman of the American Civil War Center and her peers suggest we do in Richmond, where this debate is occurring over statues on Monument Avenue.


  • The Myth of the Kindly General Lee
    The moon rises above Robert E. Lee on Monument Avenue.
    2010/ALEXA WELCH EDLUND/TIMES-DISPATCH

    A Southerner, I was raised with the perspective that our leaders in the War Between The States were misunderstood when looking back in historical context. I was told that they wanted to free their slaves but since it was just not done at the time they had to be quiet about their intent to eventually liberate the humans they kept enslaved. Ohhhhh not so.
  • Reclaiming Southern Pride
    "This history has been lost—or is simply ignored—by a number of southerners who say they don’t sport the flag with the subjugation of black people in mind. They insist it is about Southern pride. Perhaps to them, that is indeed all it’s about. The other 'stuff' doesn’t matter anymore, and when people attack the flag, they attack their heritage. That is why the commissioner of a town that neighbors mine claims he is pushing for the flag to be flown over the city courthouse.

    But it is the Confederate flag supporters who still embrace the doctrine of white supremacy who have the history right."
Note to the internet: if you can dialogue, you really can change someone's mind. I am an example of that. I went from Southern Heritage Pride to no longer enjoying my (always tongue-in-cheek) Redneck Rebel belt buckle. (Although I still *am* American by birth and happily Southern by the grace o' god! Just without flags or symbols that assert supremacy and pain.)

This song has been running in my head for days:
Ignore the model writhing in the video, instead listen to understand why.
[Bono described the song's theme as such: "It is a song about coming together, but it's not the old hippie idea of 'Let's all live together.' It is, in fact, the opposite. It's saying, We are one, but we're not the same. It's not saying we even want to get along, but that we have to get along together in this world if it is to survive. It's a reminder that we have no choice". The Edge described it on one level as a "bitter, twisted, vitriolic conversation between two people who've been through some nasty, heavy stuff". On another level, he suggested that the line "we get to carry each other" introduces "grace" to the song and that the wording "get to" (instead of "got to") is essential, as it suggests that it is a privilege to help one another, not an obligation."]

 

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