Between the Lines

Dashiell

falconI’m writing something positive today. Usually I write about the myriad ways in which we are just totally screwed. Admittedly, it’s hard to be positive and honest at the same time. I do not wax rhapsodic about unicorns, rainbows, furry bunnies, or the coming of the New Age. What I’ve got is a little bit more down-to-earth.

Since the media is reactionary, and the majority of what we see through the media consists of right-wingers being reactionary about one thing or another, we need to practice the fine art of inference in order to chart actual progress in our society.

What I’m trying to say is that the degree of hysterical, fear-mongering reaction to any given social phenomenon is, in a curiously backhanded way, a direct measure of the progress of whatever is being reacted against.

Feminism, then, continues to gain ground in the consciousness of women and men worldwide, precisely because the public reaction against feminism remains intense. The sexist statements coming from the mouths of wingnuts seem more primitive than usual, which means they’re afraid. And that’s good news.

biracialThere is also a gradual but steady lessening of racial prejudice in this country. Why do I say this? Because the fear and race-baiting from white supremacists in this country have sharply risen since Obama became President. The behavior of the racist yahoos has been much less sophisticated, i.e. cruder and more obvious, which indicates that they’re losing. The younger segments of the population increasingly don’t give a shit about race, and are in fact more and more openly hostile to racism. So, paradoxically, the bigots scream louder than ever, trying to convince someone, anyone, that there’s something very scary about racial equality. This is desperation on their part.

gay-marriageFundamentalists are fighting rear-guard actions against gay rights, and the struggle is difficult. In this area there’s still a lot of prejudice to overcome, but the gains made in the last few years alone are amazing. Less than ten years ago, gay marriage seemed like an impossible goal. Now the rightists have to keep putting up referendum blockades in order to stop it. The blockades, however, will not stand for long. People are turning against the ugly pseudo-Christian haters because they have nothing hopeful to offer people—all they’ve got is anger and repression, which won’t sustain them in the long run.

There’s a lot more awareness in general of the predatory nature of Wall Street, and the servile nature of the media. People are actually questioning the idea of free market capitalism. The massive looting by the banks is a big wake-up call. On the media front, more and more people get informed through blogs or Twitter rather than relying on TV news with its “village” mentality. The morons are still watching Fox, but a majority of Americans are not being fooled by that blatant propaganda tool.

DOPThere was a time when progressives felt permanently isolated. The Bush regime woke us up, and now there is a much larger and diverse progressive community. We’re still very weak in funds, especially compared to the rightists with their corporate cash flow. But we’re a hell of a lot more vocal than we were even just five or six years ago.

What I see is a gradual and steady awakening of a lot of people from the self-satisfied apathy that has plagued us since the 1970s. There still remains the challenge of concerted action against imperialism and for peace. But never before in my lifetime have I seen the right-wing so desperate, fearful, incoherent, and self-destructive. And that’s good news.

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~ by cdash on November 11, 2009.

5 Responses to “Between the Lines”

  1. There’s only one thing in this post I DON’T agree with… the corporate cash-flow thing. some of the richest men in the world, not to mention in the country, vote consistently liberal. Gates, Allen . . . and they spend a lot of their moneh on liberal political movements, everything from gay rights to solving the malaria problem. ^^ If that’s not something to be happy about, I don’t know what is.

  2. Dash I tend to be an optimist as well. There is a casual respect for the presence of protocol in most of our ideological disagreements. Be it race or any of the other subject you alluded to.Even though the deck is sometimes stacked on way or the other . The fact that we art not immediately resorting to violence is the upside.
    The old American civilian army has been dissolved. In the past it was the average Joe, the citizen that upheld fanatical ideals of what it is to Be American or who enjoyed the rights of citizenship. Those people are dying off at a rapid clip.

  3. Nice essay, Dash. I always get excited when I see something from Jonestown in my RSS reader, it’s always good news.

    While I remain optimistic in the long haul, I think we have some rough road to travel in the shorter day-to-day lives we lead. I wonder sometimes if we are in the midst of a wake-up call moment: change is on the horizon, but not here yet.

    Sometimes, even when watching the retrograde Wingnuts go into full retardia oration, I get the visual image of dinasaurs thrashing about in the tar. They know that they are doomed, but they are going to keep on fighting until the last bubble breaks on the surface.

    Regards,

    Tengrain

  4. I love your essay. With some reservation, I agree with it as I’ve seen the same thing too.

    However, my concern is that the warmongering Beast of Bigotry & Greed won’t go down easily, and in it’s delusion to continue winning at dominating, it will take out as many of us as it can before it dies. I like to think that our rape by Wall Street was one of it’s final actions, and not a prelude to WW3.

    If this can be avoided, I think we’ll be okay after this just arrived Great Depression II ends.

  5. I hope you’re right as all the tirades look to me as if something worse is bubbling underneath the surface.

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