I’m On A Mission To Never Agree

No one is really protected if they are doused in a kind of moral antibiotic their entire life. We’re no longer prepared to have our feelings hurt, to face the terrible shit that happens to us, to navigate these terrible experiences. Without that we can’t grow empathy, we can’t relate to others, we can’t reach out.

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Dear Readers,

Sorry for the lapse in posting. I’ve broken ribs, shoulders, had beautiful and terrible matters of the heart occur this year and been working on fiction, becoming a teacher and playing GTA 5. So, the blog has gone by the way side. So for the five people that give a fuck, thanks for your patience. I truly appreciate it. Onto the ranting.

Fugazi was never my favorite band. They are fucking amazing, of course. Don’t get me wrong, growing up in the shadows of Washington DC and having the opportunity to see them live and grow up with their music is something I will and do treasure. But they operate in my space in a way that differs from most bands. They reach the purely intellectual side of my brain as opposed to the emotional. Maybe, because of that, I don’t give them enough credit.

I am lucky in that I did get to meet Ian MacKaye a few times in my life. It’s pretty rad to know that in my lifetime I’ve performed at shows and readings where he’s been a spectator. This alone always reminded me to be humble and to invest back into the community that invests in. I’ve met a lot of musicians, many really spectacular people. But Ian, he was always something different. I consider him a teacher. I don’t agree with everything he says or does, but I respect the man quite a bit and his music, his presence, the interviews I read had a profound effect on my life.

I turned 40 this year and my life changed quite a bit. Way more than I expected, though tremors of anticipation and anxiety had been present leading up to the day I left my 30’s behind. A year ago I was diagnosed with irregular heat beats right before my former band was about to go on tour. The tour meant everything to me. It still does. Because I knew it would be the last time I’d want to do that in my life. My needs and wants were changing. My personality was changing.

Unfortunately, as more changed, I got further and further away from communities and activities I once cherished. That transition has been somewhat difficult. While I knew that I wouldn’t be going to as many punk shows and booking gigs and playing in bands, I never wanted to give that up completely. But due to circumstances outside my control, that has become the case. At least for now. I lost my love for things that used to fuel me.

I’ve had a few mantra’s that I have taken from Ian. My favorite, the one I have lived much of the past 15 years or so since he said it was “You want Fugazi? Be your own Fugazi.” I’m not sure if that’s a direct quote or not, but he did say something to that effect, meaning of course, that what you do should be more important to you and those around you and if you want something to happen, make it happen. Fugazi was just a band. They were a great band, but like all bands they had their time. They came and went. There is nothing special about that, except in the moment it was. Being nostalgic for that time, that band you love, those people you knew isn’t going to bring them back. So make your own right now, in the moment you have. Living that was awesome.

Still, trying to be my own Fugazi for years was also difficult. I’m not humble like Ian. I get very frustrated. I get very egotistical. I’ve played in some great bands that no one has heard. I’ve done most of it to try to create for others what my heroes created for me. Spaces where magic happens, where people feel connected, where individuals and groups are inspired. I hate playing live. It’s a chore for me and on a creative level bores me. It’s acting instead of creating, and I don’t really like acting. But live music is so important in our culture. It’s a dying medium from what I can see. In the years since Fugazi stopped playing live (nearly 15 years ago) I’ve seen one band that lived up to their hype. I’ve seen a lot of great shows since, but nothing of that level. Few bands today give what the members of Fugazi did. It’s unfortunate, especially since it’s so much easier to network, connect and get heard. No one’s really doing it right.

My mantra that I have recently adopted from Ian is a line from their last album. “I’m on a mission to never agree.” Ian was always known for saying things people took as inflammatory. His perspective was always different, but very well reasoned. When The Argument came out just over a month after the World Trade Center crumbled. It was a poignant song, more so that it probably meant to be.

Today, for me it rings more true than ever. I feel divorced from a community that never really took their slogans to heart. They never wanted to do the work. They wanted to shout and scream and have moral superiority. Meanwhile, there is actual work to do in this world.

I used to think this song was kinda pompous, a trait I think Ian has been labeled his entire public life. But as the years have gone on, it’s made more sense. The point of arguing is not to be right, but to challenge the stale conventions we rest on that occur when we stop considering our own perspectives. The argument isn’t about being combative, though it will come off that way, especially with your detractors, but searching for higher understanding. It’s some zen type shit.

We live in a time where you can no longer disagree without hurting someone’s feelings. We have lost the art of argument, both civil and serious. There is a status quo you must uphold and when that status is challenged, even with reason, and work, and truth, you will suffer. The reactions of everyone are emotional and self righteous. The politics and values and worthless beliefs of people don’t matter. You can’t question anything these days without people getting in an uproar. And forbid if you don’t come on the side of people’s very narrow view.

I’m sick to death with how terrible it is, the moral uprightness that everyone seems to have to their values that they adopt because it seems right to them. But if life has taught me anything, nothing is right 100% of the time. There is always error, always deviation, always abnormalities. To not allow for those differences is a type of character suicide. I’ve watched a lot of people lean on that sword this year. I miss them. I don’t miss the frustration of dealing with people so set in their ways that they can make room for their own errors, and, more importantly, others errors.

In all of this of course, there are bigger issues at stake. We’re creating more and more police officers in our spaces, ensuring everyone is safe at the cost of actual safety. No one is really protected if they are doused in a kind of moral antibiotic their entire life. We’re no longer prepared to have our feelings hurt, to face the terrible shit that happens to us, to navigate these terrible experiences. Without that we can’t grow empathy, we can’t relate to others, we can’t reach out. Our shared experiences are now so individualized and manufactured to fit in boxes that we can’t see how truly fucked we actually are.

Meanwhile, there are no safe spaces. Not if you live in Syria. Not if you live Iraq. Not if you live in Palestine. Not if you are trans. Not if you are black. Not if you are native. How can we prepare for the bigger fights when we can’t even have civil discourse in our own houses? And while the metaphor is true, I also mean that literally. If I can’t be invited to your house and have a civil disagreement and discussion without the possibility of upsetting you or becoming upset myself, how the fuck are we supposed to actually defeat the bombs that still fall? If everything is a trigger, if everything is an absolute, if there is no room for stress under fear that things will be broken, how will we break down what’s imprisoned us in the first place?

So yeah, I get it now Ian. You were about my age when you penned that song and I see now why you did and what it means. So, once again I will carry that mantra with me. I’m sure there will be others, new ones to apply as my life changes and I try to continue progressing and growing. I also know that this mantra is not just something to apply outwardly to the world, but also internally. I know these ideas don’t just work one way, that I have to do the work on myself if I want to see the seeds root and grow.

On The Middle Age

This keyboard under my fingers is the most important thing to me right now.

Yesterday I got a tattoo on my inner thigh. It is a piece of script. I am not going to share what it says. It’s very personal. It came to be as a friendship tattoo with a person I met just around a month ago. We have become fast friends, making a type of  connection I wasn’t really sure I was capable of doing any more nor the type I thought I wanted and especially not one I thought I needed. The same night I met this incredible woman I lamented that my social circle was too much for me to handle as I approach 40 which I will turn in less than a week.

I quite meant it when I said that I could not longer keep up with my social circle. At 40, honestly, I’m way late to the growing up stages of life. This was entirely on purpose on my behalf to be sure. Growing up is not something I ever wanted to do. But at some point last year, this fact was going to become inevitable. Aside from a need to care for my body, my needs were changing. More importantly, what I want from this life is changing. The people around me, beautiful as they are, want other things in for their life right now. That is totally awesome. It’s even sad to have to leave activities behind that you once reveled in and with it some of the people that came with those. But partying and writing novels and stories can not happen simultaneously. Least not so far as I have been able to practice it.

When I moved to Albuquerque in late 2010 I was 33. I was unemployed. I had all the time in the world and I was starting my life over. I stayed out a lot. I made crappy art (and some okay stuff too), and I met a lot of people many of them younger than me because 33 year olds don’t often hang out a crappy dinners until 2AM. So it was easy to act and feel young again for a while. I went to shows, I went to parties, I tried to be the sober driver most of the time, sometimes I didn’t. I slept on couches, on floors, the occasional bed. I lived my 20’s in my 30’s and I have no regrets about that. Then I almost blew up my heart last summer, right before a tour my band would actually go on, with me thankfully. Things changed. I changed. I wanted to change.

Growing up means different things for me than I think most people go through. I’m not having a crisis in the typical sense. For one I have no kids, I am not married, nor even in a romantic relationship. My so called “wild oats” do not need sowing. I have done more than enough of that. I do have my laments in that regard for sure. Chasing pleasure, chasing romantic stories and heartbreak, late night drives, always needing to be stimulated and cramming that in like it would one day run out are things I have been having a difficult time letting go of. But I also don’t really want these experiences anymore. Pleasure means something so much different to me.

One thing this new connection taught me is how to appreciate the time that I have while I am in it. The circumstances helped to facilitate this; she’s moving in two days. In meeting her and becoming quite fond of and encumbered by her, I decided that I was going to make the most of every moment she and I were able to share. I was not going to rush to the next meet up and try to create anything in that space. What existed in that time was memorable and special, even if the activity was mundane. What mattered was I got to just enjoy what was there without a spectacle. I have never been more present in my life and that became true with my other relationships too. The time I have is limited, by proxy of life and by the cycle itself. I have learned that pleasure can be derived differently and that spending the time I do have aware of its limited existence where I am concerned makes those moments more important.

And I have shit to do. It can’t be done at 3 AM when I am drunk and across town. Or at 9 AM when I am walking to my car. Or at 2 PM when I am sleeping through the hangover. The time I have to get my work done, the work that is important to me needs to be utilized with more precision. This keyboard under my fingers is the most important thing to me right now. It is where my stories will emerge. It is the place I can live in my creativity, bask in my own imagination and wonder that I have managed to hold on to despite the crass, cold, and sarcasm that growing older seems to beset upon us.

What I value is still true, but how I choose to engage in those values is different now. I am not a hollering, brick throwing, pissed off person anymore. I want to manifest what I hold sacred and share it through words. I want to light that fire of hope in someone else, perhaps a person who is a hollering, brick throwing, pissed off person, to keep going. Moving forward, wanting to live past 40, realizing that it’s clear that if I made it this far then to keeping getting better, keep treating myself better, keep creating only makes sense. This middle ages are not about regret, it’s about getting shit done. It’s time to do it!

On Disorder and Judgement

What makes something a disorder?

Autism Spectrum Disorder. That word, disorder, stings me. Despite much evidence to the contrary, people have unprofessionally diagnosed me, based on specific behaviors as “being on the spectrum” (so problematic). While I would be the first to admit that my social skills and abilities to pick up on cues lack sufficiently, I am not by any means afflicted with Asperger Syndrome or anything similar. I mostly just don’t like much social interaction. I’m not a huge fan of the human race.

What I don’t like about the word Disorder in said Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis is that it centralizes human interaction as the normal state. It supposes we must be social creatures and that any other means of existence is abnormal. Not being engaged in the world around you, but focused on that which draws your attention is somehow a bad thing.

I’m by no means proposing that those with Autism live some kind of fantasy life. They are trapped in a world that expects them to give a fuck about what is external to their concern and when they are denied by outside forces from doing their work (because it is not work that can be qualified and capitalized on) they reach a level of intense animosity and express it outwardly. We don’t approach people with autism on their level, we expect them to meet ours.

I considered this in the case of judgement. We here in the west have this absurd saying “Only God can judge me” which is a foolish notion considering we have a job in our government that is called Judge whose literal function is to cast judgement. And make no mistake it is not just legal matters but those of social and ethical matters to. We, Americans, are nothing if not judgmental. We are taught not to revel in this, at least not publicly, and yet we do.

If there is a norm, and constructs we navigate have informed me at least that there are, then everything outside that is abnormal. But who makes up normal and how did they get this right? This right which is a judgement is in opposition to what we express and yet casting judgement individually is hypocrisy.

I want to know if this so called disorder is labeled as such because the behavior of the people who exhibit it’s patterns because it is not “productive”? What makes something a disorder? There are certain unethical and immoral behaviors that are ignored because they do not encroach on productivity of whatever system the individual is engaged in. Concessions are made for acts and actions that are actually harmful to others on quantifiable scales.

As the kids say, “what the actual fuck is that all about”?

Music as Code

There are still many things for me to learn in this life. Sadly, I will not learn everything I want in a singular lifetime.

I’m about to turn 40 and that feels like a big deal year to me. Far be it from me to be immune to the hostilities of western culture, but @ a certain point, unless you are creating the zeitgeist, you have been aged out. Since I am languishing in amateur status still, unpublished author, local musician, terribly unfunny comedian, the western world has checked me out. I couldn’t be cool if I tried no matter how many 20 somethings still think I exude youth (thank you Bunny, you beautiful darling).

This hit me the other evening. I was at a bar where a friend of mine had his last hurrah at his monthly DJ night before he moves. At this particular gig a pop up record store sells new and used vinyl to all us old hipster bitches who are too cool for digital (which is a lie, except that I don’t understand why anyone would stream and I don’t really know how to use streaming services). From them I scored, among other treasures, the 12″ EP of Macho Man by The Village People. Now, I don’t actually need to hear “Macho Man” or “YMCA” ever again. Or so I thought. I bought the 12″ because it features a song entitled “Sodom and Gomorrah” which is about (in my interpretation) a person wishing to save those villages of sensual pleasure from God’s irrational and homophobic wrath.

Many of my friends at this DJ night, which is devoted to music found on vinyl, are curious about each other’s purchases. We are constantly pulling our records out of the plastic bags we clutch them in to show them off. In one of these exchanges a new friend of mine began to pontificate wildly and fervently on the Village People. The disco group of yore is at present of particular interest to them. As I listened and learned about some of the curious gender and ethnic identities of the members, I realized that though I may have aged out of being cool and aware of the modern zeitgeist, I now have another role to play, that of historical curator.

In a certain ways music was the internet before the internet. There once existed in a former time and place where people went out and saw music and movies and plays and poets and lectures on a regular basis. Now we have 9 million channels and YouTube videos and other shit. In some ways this is great because everything is available. However, there in also lies a problem with total access, nothing is curated. The roots of now have been severed leaving us with little knowledge of our own histories. Without history, there is no struggle. Without struggle we have no revolution.

It is obvious to us now that The Village People were GAY AS ALL FUCK, but at the time they were not “out”. Their performances were coded in camp and while that was often read by gay and queer populations the straight world didn’t quite get it. Further, the sexuality was presented with a backdrop of disco, the musical du jour of the times, and allowed people to dance loudly and do mounds of coke in the bathrooms of night clubs. I know very little about the Village People beyond their presentation and reading their performance as queer. However, I am sure that many of their coded messages were read loud and clear by certain populations and as such were easily translated and used to increase self empowerment. Their importance to the queer acceptance movement remains important.

So then does ensuring they are not lost in the minutiae of modern, accessible, throw away culture that we exist in today. Very few messages, coded or obvious have lasting power. Trends and communication change quickly. The spokespeople of cultures and movements seem to be different year after year. There is not lasting power in today’s world. While gay and lesbian, queer, and trans lives exist out in the public arena now more than ever, and to some this feels seamless, this is not necessarily the case. Large swaths of western society are still violently opposed to queer identities existing, in public spaces or otherwise. This is not just true of our rural, bible belt America. Black, trans sisters are being killed in our so-called liberal cities at alarming rates. Their lives are taken by members of the communities they grew up in. Those communities of course fight for survival in a white hegemony, that uses economic, civic and social means to inflict terror and violence.

The Village People still matter because even as we gain ground through means of acceptable defiance, subversion, inclusion and dissent (often being forced to use our bodies as weapons against state sanctioned violence, further diminishing our worth and causing continuing wounds) coded messages in public, straight, spaces are still necessary. Even in spaces where it’s “acceptable” it’s still not safe to be gay or lesbian, queer or questioning, trans, non-binary, unsure and afraid. A DJ playing a song by the Village People in one of these spaces can still act as a coded message to someone that lets them know that there is, at the very least, an ally present in the occupied and overwhelming space. The straight world may believe they are in on “the joke” when “YMCA” or “Macho Man” comes on, but the historical context of The Village People still remains. It’s power still exists. It’s necessity still permeates.

There are still many things for me to learn in this life. Sadly, I will not learn everything I want in a singular lifetime. However, I try to take each moment I have as a possibility towards further enrichment while also recognizing the responsibility I have to share what I know with anyone curious enough to want to listen. Not every moment or action can be a hurled brick through the window of tyranny. Not every thing I do will be inspiring and revolutionary, but that doesn’t absolve me of trying. No matter how uncool I might be.

This is an unedited text for now. Please excuse the errors.

You do not have the luxury of your privellege any longer

He called me “Nose” and made fun of how I dressed, a skater west coast kid with an Anthrax t-shirt that was out of place in a growing hip-hop world.

I was born with a cleft palette. This is a condition that may or may not be genetic. It’s relatively unknown. It’s not considered a disability, but a deformity, though it does come with some less than helpful problems.

As it is physical and outward in nature it is visible. People can see it and react to it, which they usually do in real-time. Kids stare at me, parents when I was growing up asked my mother if I was retarded, even today my worth and value is a question because I look different. Before I knew what white was or male was I knew what cleft palette was. It was something different from others that I would be judged on, fairly or not.

I was not bullied or made fun of too much as a child. I grew up in a close community of friends and families and was normalized like everyone else. Despite her efforts, my mom’s lessons on how to deal with bullies was never needed. In fact, only once do I recall any kid taking his finger to his nose and flattening it while staring at me as his bus pulled away. The image stuck with me, but it was an isolated incident.

Later on in middle and high school, once my family moved across country and away from the comforts, things changed, but only a little. Boo Taylor, a young man who would grow up with much more against him than I, picked on me the first day of 7th grade at the bus stop. He called me “Nose” and made fun of how I dressed, a skater west coast kid with an Anthrax t-shirt that was out of place in a growing hip-hop world. It spread, but only a little and only among his friends who would use it over the next 6 years. Sadly, it would be a long time before I gave up on that animosity.

I couldn’t fight with my body so, encouraged by the systematic racism that pitted me, a white kid, against my less privileged class mates (I mean you get that Boo was black right), I used my wit and intellect to fight back. In the hallways I was a target for violence, in the classrooms I was a hero. So, it was clear that being white and smart mattered. As I went through high school, I learned how this was used to divide me from people. Race mattered, privilege mattered, how you project yourself and how you are perceived matter. No one sat me and Boo down (or anyone else I didn’t get along with) and help create bridges. Instead, we grew up worlds apart. He was allowed to live in his world and me in mine, protected by teachers and administrators that made sure I succeeded and he did not.  Eight years ago he died in a car crash.He left behind a daughter.

I don’t mean to insist that Boo tormented me for years or that I was greatly teased the older I got. But the world he and I lived in was divided early on. In fact, I would say it was divided before we even knew each other. We only came in contact because my parents rented a house in his neighborhood before buying a new one miles away. That was my first moment as a transient gentrifier, though I didn’t know that at the time. Somewhere along the line he was taught to see difference as weakness. In me, society encouraged me to see race as weakness and to use the value of education I was expected to uphold as a weapon to divide.

When I hear my white friends around me, in these scary, dark days after Trump has taken office and made his decrees, talk about not using violence, about hearing the other side out, I think of Boo. Yes, I could have easily resorted to violence. This would have been perfectly acceptable to everyone. After all, we were cast as two boys, left alone to solve our issues out on the playground. Punching it out was how we were supposed to resolve our differences. This act would prove who was the better and who was not. This is the expectation of boys and men.

It was not bigger of me to use my intellect and wit to get out of fights (though perhaps my face feels differently). Boo was not my first, nor my last tormentor. Most of them were not young black boys, in fact, most of them were white and far more menacing than Boo ever was. But still, that made me no less a bully. It made me an asshole. The fact that I never did get the few teeth I had knocked out of my head is a testament just to how powerful intelligence is wielded as a weapon. My words were always stronger than any threats or sophomoric insults.

Systemic racism is just that, it’s a part of a larger operating system that makes up a whole. Wit, charm, affluence, knowledge, charisma, these are weapons used in this system. People who have many of these traits are in charge and using them to pit us people against each other. The problem isn’t that I should have punched Boo or anyone else, it’s that I belittled these other people, talked down to them and proved they were less than in a system that was designing me to play a part. What we should have done is punched those that pitted us against each other.

Spencer, Yiannopoulos, Bannon and others are fascists. They have been programmed as part of a system that suppresses differences. They started doing this with their voices, their words, their speeches, so filled with hate and inhumanity. They are now using the system, they are leading the system to create violence and fear. They are reinforcing the hate that has been manufactured for decades.

You no longer have the luxury of standing by while the system pits you against your fellow humans. If you sit on the grand pillar of cis, het, male, able, whiteness, a pillar I know you did not build, but inherited none the less, it is your duty to knock those fascists off it and send them towards the masses that have been disenfranchised to get their piece too. The argument towards pacifism is gas lighting you into believing you are being reasonable. And I do not blame you for that. Good natured people do not want to hurt others. Which is why this fight, this uncomfortable act of violence can not just be the burden of the queers, people of color, disabled, Muslims, indigenous, etc., who are left beneath the fray of the monolith that you balance upon.

The state has used violence as a vehicle towards repressing the masses forever. It has also used power to oppress people and preach non-violence in the same breath. It misrepresents pacifism towards the masses, distorting the words of King Jr., Gandhi, The Dalai Lama, and pushing the people towards passivity.

This is a not a matter of waiting to see who throws the first punch. It’s not a matter of sticking up for others. It’s about making a sacrifice to your comfort, challenging what you know and standing up for what you insist you believe in.

 

 

Why It Scares Me

Yeah, maybe some of us aren’t giant pieces of shit. But it’s becoming clear to met that most Americans are.

I spent much of my Sunday reading articles, arguments and accounts about how to handle fascists. Honestly, I’m still kind of shell-shocked. I didn’t know Richard Spencer until I saw the gif’s of him getting punched in the face by the black bloc. And honestly, I really don’t like I do know who that human piece of shit is. That someone brought him to life and allowed him to grow up to be who and what he is appalls me. My mother would cold clock me if I turned out like that.

The fact that it is 2017 and we are talking about fascism and fascists, that websites exist in feasible form, that they are accessed regularly, espousing the extinction of black people scares me. The most vivid memory I have in my life comes from when I was in college. I was working at a photo development store. I was helping an older gentleman pick up photos of his grandkids. Maybe they were even his great grand kids. On his forearm was tattooed a number. The reality of this stopped me in my tracks. I did everything I could not to cry. It would have felt disrespectful. I took the bills from his hand, gave him change and his photos and thanked him.

I have no idea how many people I have met that not only lived through the holocaust but also survived it. I’d never felt guilty about having tattoos in my life, but in that moment I felt like I was mocking this man’s survival. Still to this day, I etch the dumbest things I can into my skin. Anything to remind me that this life is temporary and so too this body. And I know for me tattoos are a way of rendering a body I am not comfortable in as a means of control. But part of me also knows that anyone can take my body with enough force and do whatever they want to it.

I don’t want to have a number etched in my skin. Except for the one I have already chosen, 42, which suits me as the answer to the meaning of life, no one shall ever etch a number on my skin. I knew that day what that number meant, I knew where that old man had been and what dignities and hell he suffered. I could not commiserate with any of his past and I was too humble to ask. But I was not unfamiliar with fascism and what that looked like.

We joke about what we do if we were the supreme ruler. I make jokes that I would turn all football team uniforms pink and make us admit how homoerotic of a nation we are. I tell people who were it up to me Devo would be the only music allowed to be played in shopping centers and malls. But in all honesty, as funny as I think that would be, having that much power actually scares me. So I hate the NFL and capitalism. Big deal. The truth is, I don’t want anyone in charge. I want to work in communities and make decisions based on consensus for the good of everyone. Even if you worship a make-believe sky character or  like the Cowboys, I still think you should be allowed to live peacefully and comfortably and be cared for should you fall ill or be injured. And even though I think Devo rules, no one should be forced to listen to them every time they leave their house. Unless we all agree that would be awesome.

I’m angry as hell that we are nearing the 100 year mark of WWII and we haven’t progressed a god damn bit in the larger sense. Yeah, maybe some of us aren’t giant pieces of shit. But it’s becoming clear to met that most Americans are. I have been from one side of this country to the other, top to bottom. I have met people from many walks of life. I have seen the Red Wood Forest, I have touched the Gulf Stream Waters, I have driven through the endless miles of Golden Valleys. I have been adrift in rivers in Oklahoma, I have walked the marshes of Florida, hiked mountains in California and Virginia. I have swum naked in Walden Pond. I love this country. I love this country so much. It’s a paradise with such great diversity in so many ways. I have slept on the floors of friends and strangers alike in my near 40 years and I don’t intend to stop anytime soon.

Terrible things occurred to make this country happen. Millions of people were and continue to be colonized. People were enslaved to enrich wealth and maintain property.Others were vilified and kicked off their lands. People were placed in concentration camps due to suspicion. America has done terrible things to be what it is. We have to also undo this. This will take work and humility and forgiveness and listening. It will mean sacrifice and it will hurt, even those of us who recognize this.

But I am scared that we are allowing the rich and mighty, the privileged white, the bankers and corporations and governors to take this away. I get that people are scared. I get that they think someone else will solve the problems and don’t realize it’s the same people causing the problems that they are putting their trust in. And I am afraid that everything I have fallen in love with about being an American and living in what very well should be the greatest, most loving country in the world is going to be taken away.

And I fear the most that well-meaning people who also feel this in their hearts won’t actually fight for it until it is too late.

The Time for Politeness is Over

This small piece on the Onion’s website is baby town frolics in comparison to what we have to look forward to. That child is part of the disgusting elite, and he will follow in that pathway should we allow our pleasantries to continue. Satire is a crucial to public discourse.

Tonight I came home after a rather inspiring show in my hometown. It was the final show for local Albuquerque punk band The Ill Motion. It was a bittersweet evening for many reasons. The obvious ones are that something beautiful and positive is coming to an end. The other is the underlying fear that it will be harder and harder for subculture communities to find spaces and outlets to openly express themselves. Tonight a room full of kids got to gather in a coffee shop and sing along with their friends. There was no beer served, no companies selling anything, no violence. It was a place where this cities young, desperate for outlets to pursue and enjoy their lives, actually got to be free and excited about something.

I sat at my computer. I am working on a story for a Young Adult series I want to attempt to author. It is about resistance against evil. I am working on a background story to give myself some context and maybe, one day if this work ever comes to fruition, give a future audience something special. I made the mistake of getting on facebook. Ungh. I was immediately disheartened.

I have never had much fondness for the so called American Political Left. I find their stances weak and their tactics soft. Further, The American Left is filled with blind, dumb, privileged white people, whom despite their access to education and often coming from large, diverse cities, have their heads up their asses. The last two days of social media have been over saturated with this type of disappointed expression against impolite, destructive and even violent tactics that have been used to demonstrate that the oppressed are no longer going to accept the old model of protests and dissent.

The issue in particular seems small. But this is the entire problem. Everything matters now. The small stuff matters. And the left’s desire for civil discourse has been the problem for decades. And as we face literal fascism in our country, the time for this type of so-called civil behavior is over. It is time to recognize that the comforts and continuities that we enjoy have a short lifespan. That our physical being is under attack. It is no longer just the disenfranchised, the marginalized, the colonized, the outcast whose lives are in danger. It is everyone who is not the right.

I read a post objecting to a small article in the Onion. It is a picture of Baron Trump, the child of our so-called president. He is looking, as kids do, bewildered. The photo’s caption reads: Bored Barron Trump Counts Confederate Flags In Inauguration Crowd To Pass Time. The author of the post indicated that normalizing the satirizing of children should not be tolerated. I disagree and I wrote as much and then I unfollowed the post and removed it from my feed. The implication that Baron Trump is off limits while queer people are murdered, while black people are murdered, while indigenous people are murdered, while Muslims are murdered, while sex workers are murdered, while the disabled are mocked is, in fact, insulting.

To be clear, our now President lowered the bar. Neither he, nor his family deserves the platitudes of respect of the public he is trying desperately to misalign and purposely attack. This small piece on the Onion’s website is baby town frolics in comparison to what we have to look forward to. That child is part of the disgusting elite, and he will follow in that pathway should we allow our pleasantries to continue. Satire is a crucial to public discourse. Further, the child in question is not being attacked or mocked as so many other children of our President’s have been for their looks or other awful topics. He’s being poked at because he is the child of a RACIST MISOGYNIST HOMOPHOBIC MILITARY LOVING PIECE OF SHIT. Some one needs to clue him the fuck in before he becomes our version of Kim Jong-un.

It is already becoming quite clear to me that I will probably be losing quite a few friends in the coming years. And no, not intelligently crippled right wing shit bags who don’t get it. In my social media circle there is only one person I know that had the audacity to vote for Trump. I am not going to spend my time trolling or arguing with him, nor am I going to get in fights on the internet with bleeding heart liberals about their white feelings and bullshit manners. Fuck them. Seriously, fuck them. I’ve always been outspoken, opinionated and issued my ideas with a type of steadfast, confrontational conviction. And I will continue to do so. But I am not gonna have debates about deferential attitudes and behavior. I have never valued politeness, in myself or anyone else. Softening the message to me is as dishonest as being silent. I don’t have time for that.

One of the commenters on the post who agreed indicated they wrote to the Onion asking them to take the article down. I decided to write them in favor of the article. Below is the email I sent. I will not stand for tolerance of evil. I will not allow it to be dignified with conciliatory attitudes and behavior. I will no longer let the left get away with their bullshit and not voice my opposition. I wake up every morning from nightmares about what’s going to happen to my friends, the people I love, the people I care about, the people I see struggle. I will not live in fear, and I will not allow the white, upper class left to censor people and their expression against oppression, in whatever form that takes. Fuck you. I’m tired of your politeness. Get on board or get mowed over with the fucking fascists. I have tired of your bullshit.

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I have already come across some so-called well meaning, left leaning people that are upset about this small story you posted.

They have indicated that they wrote you asking to remove it from your site saying that satirizing the child of our now, so called president is shameful. I disagree with that sentiment and want to offer a counter objection to theirs.  Governors and their families are not free from public scrutiny. And while some will argue that children have little choice in the matter of what their terrible parents do, it does not give them a free pass of shelter from the reality of how terrible their parents may be.
Further, the polite left and all these good natured kiss asses need to wake the fuck up. Shit is bad. It’s about to get worse. Poking at the child of a rapist, misogynist, racist piece of shit is hardly uncalled for. It’s down right playful as far as I am concerned. The rules have changed. The gloves are off and if the rest of us aren’t safe, those queer, people of color, Muslims, disabled, etc., etc., neither then should the child of a disgusting human being who happens to be in the white house.

Please continue to use humor to help dismantle this terrible new regime. Please do not let up under pressure from anyone.

Thank You