I Hear America Weeping

Today across this land, tears are being shed by the shoemaker, the mason,
the carpenter, the housewife, the custodian, the programmer, the teacher,
and the child. They are being shed when we hear the sounds of our great
American family tearing itself asunder. These unrelenting tears flow
silently as we look upon our neighbors and watch the destruction of the
American Dream.

We look upon our neighbors and weep when when we see them suffer attempting
to heal their children with medicines that are unattainable. We cry as we
read our friends’ bigoted emails forwarded from a dark unspoken place. We
weep as the children of prosperous white boomers build Fortress Prosperia
around their spoils. We ache as the fortunate deride the masses as lazy,
dirty, and unworthy. We cry tears of frustration as the random circumstance
of our birth determine now more than ever the future of our families.

A part of us dies when we are told we do not want to work. A part of us
dies when we are asked to pay for the chalices in the board rooms. A part
of us dies when we are asked to believe this is our fault. A part of us
dies when a teacher and a nurse cannot afford to eat. A part of us dies
when our children are encouraged to get a college education in order to
secure their future, only to be accused the minute their mortar board hits
the ground that they are living an irresponsible lifestyle with their huge
outstanding debt. And a part of us dies when our children’s enthusiasm to
make the world better is eroded in the unemployment line.

Our heads hang in shame as we see our fortunate neighbors live lives of
ingratitude to their forebears. Our heads hang in shame as they believe
their own press, and ignore the benefits their parents received when
America invested in education, concrete, and steel. Our hands tremble with
fear each day as we drive to work knowing we are moments from destitution.

Our hands tremble with fear as the angry evangelists spread a gospel of
exclusion across our soil. Our heads hang in shame when we smell the stench
of their thinly veiled racism. Our hands tremble with fear when we are
honestly asked to consider leaders who believe that the Dream is best
achieved by establishing a our own radical hateful theocracy that rejects
science and math.

We cry tears of rage as we are asked to accept systematic upward
redistribution of wealth, but are called names when we ask for systematic
downward balance. We cry tears of rage as we are asked to believe we have
had the same fair shot as the fortunate.

Our hearts strain as we do unto others, and are cast aside as addicts of
the state. Our hearts strain with sorrow as the meek inherit nothing but
scorn. Our hearts strain as we dream of the soaring American rainbow, yet
we are told there is only one true color. Our hearts ache as we raise our
eyes to see the glory, only to gaze upon the mountaintop rising from a
walled promised land.

Our hands yearn to make, to build, and to create. Our appetite for
processing, trading, and repackaging is sated. Our admiration of the money
changers has ended. We see things clearly now, and understand the math.

Our hands yearn to create five dollars of wealth with a one dollar swing of
our hammer like we did after the war, for the common good. Our minds know
that our sweat and our creativity is worthy of investment. We long for
blisters.

I hear America weeping, and all I can do is pledge to do my part. To
prevent life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness from becoming alienable
before my children’s eyes.

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One thought on “I Hear America Weeping

  1. Beautiful post! Sigmund Freud said that the two aims of life are to love and to work, and you’re right, when we can’t work, our life is greatly diminished. I know I am a small business owner and on slack days I’m desperately trying to find something productive to do!

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