No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.
– John Donne
Yesterday, Americans had a choice. Almost equally divided, half of America chose to bring to a close 240 years of a mostly great nation. Half of America spoke and here is what they said:
- We no longer wish to be a part of the larger world, but rather we wish to be an island. On our island, we wish to have only people with very pale skin, Aryans, so to speak. On our island, we wish to have only those who believe in the same God as we do. We wish to expel all those who believe, think or look differently than we do by whatever means are necessary to achieve our goal of an all-white, Protestant, Anglo-Saxon, heterosexual population.
- We no longer wish to spend our time and resources to help other people, but to attend only to our own comfort. We no longer wish to pay taxes to ensure that those less fortunate than us can feed, clothe and shelter their families. In the words of Marie Antoinette, “let them eat cake!” We no longer care whether people who are sick can get medical attention. We have too many people on earth using our precious resources as it is – let the sick people die for all we care.
- We no longer value human life. Although we plan to abandon much of the U.S. Constitution in favour of a more authoritarian form of government and a more elitist society, we will continue to expand our 2nd Amendment rights. We do not intend to have restrictions on the possession of, not only firearms, but any other weapon. We believe that each of our lives are more important than any other, and we will be armed wherever and whenever we so choose.
- We no longer wish to participate in our government, but rather we prefer a dictator to make all decisions for us. Participation in the decisions of government require effort on our part, require that we read and learn about pesky issues such as the economy, infrastructure, and foreign affairs. We prefer to leave such things to the men at the top so that we may spend our days watching Duck Dynasty and gossiping on social media.
- We no longer care about preserving the earth and the environment for future generations. Rather, we think of ourselves as the ‘now generation’. Who knows what will happen in the next century, decade, or even tomorrow, so we shall live for today and let future generations worry about themselves. We consider it an inconvenience to be told to turn our thermostat down, or to drive our cars less. Our comfort is paramount.
- We no longer believe in the importance of education. We are tired of our tax dollars being spent to send our children to schools where they are not even taught the values we believe in, but rather are taught such frivolous things as environmental science, history and the like. We are tired of our young people being taught to think for themselves in colleges and universities – we prefer that their minds remain closed to outside ideas.
- We no longer believe that women should be considered equal to men, but rather that they exist solely for the comfort and convenience of men. We believe that a woman’s place is in the home, not above some imaginary glass ceiling making decisions that men are more capable of making. We no longer wish there to be laws to suppress a man’s natural inclination toward women, and further, we will henceforth allow men to make all decisions about a woman’s body.
- We no longer wish to be a nation that supports equality or promotes financial security for all. We do not believe that wealthy people should be obligated to share their wealth, nor to pay taxes in accordance with their wealth. We believe that wealthy people are special and that they have been chosen to rule our nation, to make the decisions for us so that we do not need to think for ourselves. We no longer support minimum wage laws, nor will we continue to support such programs as Social Security and Medicare.
- We no longer wish to trade goods and services with other nations. We wish to produce what we need here in the U.S., keep our products in the U.S., and we do not wish to import goods and services from other nations. Our new motto will be ‘self-sufficiency’. We no longer wish to see cheap clothing from Taiwan, or Christmas ornaments made in China.
- In sum, we no longer wish to be the United States of America of yore. We no longer support the values of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all, but only for ourselves. We no longer care about people who are struggling, but only ourselves. We no longer wish to concern ourselves with the world as a whole. Other nations will no longer be able to rely on our friendship, and we no longer wish to have friends outside our own borders. We believe ourselves to be a race superior to all others and we no longer need to have tolerance for any who are different than us. Those who do not wish to live in our new nation have exactly 72 days to ‘shape up or ship out.’
And those are the values, if one can call them values at all, that will define the nation after January 20, 2017. To the half of America that made this choice, I say only that I hope you will be happy with the results of your choice, but I suspect that you will not. When you realize the consequences of what you have chosen, be very, very quiet, because the other half of us will not wish to hear your lament, nor will we be quick to empathize with your plight. As the old saying goes, ‘you made your bed, now you have to lie in it’. To the half of us who tried to do the right thing … I send hugs, love, and a hope that we can survive whatever comes next.
Note to readers: I realize the tone of this post is sardonic and negative, and I apologize, but I needed to say what I said. Bear with me, please, while I find my new direction.