In reflecting on the reluctance of my generation (of baby boomers) to confront corruption in the U.S., or respond to violations of our civil, legal, and human rights, I must say I was puzzled for a while. Were we all just blind? Or stupid? Or really didn’t care about anything except our own measly lives? Why couldn’t we see what was happening?? I didn’t want war, or for everything to collapse, but I did want enough change to get rid of the rampant corruption, to change the direction we were heading. Why weren’t we dealing with what was in our face?
Then it dawned on me. We baby boomers were the flower children of the 1960s. We were the ones who thought everything could be handled with love and peace. We were the ones who demanded the end of the Viet Nam war. We were also the first ones born from the survivors of World War II and maybe we were reacting to the never-ending nightmares, tensions, and anguish witnessed in the grandparents who lost children to the war, or parents who came home but never got over the guilt and pain of having killed other young men and women, or bombed their towns and children to smithereens.
Suffice it to say, I don’t think the generation of boomers alive today is ever going to deal with the destruction of the earth, poisoning of water, loss of free speech, new laws that give government the right to imprison people without charging them, the pretense that a corporation is a person, the refusal to label GMO foods, the obstruction of new forms of energy, the murder of more than a dozen natural medicine doctors, the constant propaganda that passes for mainstream news, the de-education of American children, the total absence of common sense in everything the government does, the constant string of wars, and dozens of others issues. Our children are doing a few things to fight back, but it will be our grandchildren, or great-grandchildren, who will be forced to set things right again.
Yes, I know that there have been dozens of campaigns, marches, protests, legal fights, and fund-raising for what-not over the past decade as people have slowly awakened. But much of this has been completely ineffective and laws continue to be put in place that ignore what we want. Why do we keep on marching and protesting? Because people seem to think we still have a democracy…and we don’t. They think if they get out and march or protest, those in power will see what we want and will care enough to respond – but they don’t. When they don’t, we do it again…harder.
I love the rule of law, but isn’t it obvious that we are being cuckolded with our own legal system? We have an intimate relationship with our laws, but those in power are making fools of us with a constant stream of new laws designed to benefit only themselves. As with the typical cuckold, we are complicit in the agreement because we can’t deal with the disruption, embarrassment, or potential violence associated with having to challenge the ones screwing our legal system. We are left looking like old fools hiding behind a façade of peace and respectability. If you go back to the end of the first paragraph in the blog entry before this one, you’ll see the façade right there: we have a little more time to figure out how to make a positive change in a kinder, gentler way…time to build new systems that work better…and the chance to let natural changes press forward…because nothing is as sure as change.
Yes, I admit, I wrote those words. I am part of that generation. I don’t like violence. But there might be a heavy price to pay for this position. Certainly, there are questions that arise… Are we maintaining peace – or avoiding the truth? Do we have a working plan for our future – or are we drifting toward disaster? Do we think we can turn things around without conflict somewhere down the road – or will there be a time when it is too late and we are imprisoned in a system we can’t stand? While we are running around hoping everything will be okay, do we have our heads in the sand, unable to see and admit that nothing is working well – if at all? If we tell ourselves we don’t mind supporting our adult children who can’t find jobs, don’t have houses, can’t afford the children they’ve birthed, and never have enough money for decent transportation or a minute to relax and think clearly, what will we tell ourselves when we find we are also forced to support our grandchildren…and then our great-grandchildren? How much will we be able to do for them when we are eighty-five and need help ourselves, and they have nothing to offer? If our grandchildren and great grandchildren revolt and everything falls apart, will we look back and wish we had dealt with our issues when we were younger, healthier, and had more energy for dealing with disruption? After all, how far can you run with a cane and where can you hide with a walker?