Remembrance Day revisited…

CN: discussion of violence and prejudice

I stand on my balcony and can see Lake Ontario. On a clear day we stand on the shore and look across the lake at Buffalo. This has never scared me until now.

I went online yesterday and my news feed was flooded with stories of hatred and violence. A friend of mine has an openly gay ten year old who was terrified to go to school… to the point of stress vomiting. He’s been taunted since kindergarten, this fear is something new.

Another friend of mine had a pick up truck, with a poorly shored confederate flag, nearly hit him at high noon. The driver stopped and jumped out screaming “fucking faggot” before heading into the nearby post office. My friend wasn’t sure who he was more scared for, himself or the solitary black woman operating the office. Luckily both were fine.

After my friend posted, one of his friends chimed in to say she’d just had passengers tell her to flash them in order to get a tip. Pro tip, that’s not how taxis work. But maybe that’s how they work in Trump’s new United States… if the driver is female and the passengers are male.

Yet more friends are panicking about getting IUDs inserted before January 20th or getting married before that time. One’s researching nursery schools in Canada while others half joke about marrying a Canadian citizen.

I’d expected the hatred and violence to start slow and increase. Instead it poured out as if a flood gate was opened, starting with a bottle bashed over a gay man’s head because this is Trump’s America now. It moved on to school children drawing and shouting “build a wall” while their classmates cried. To high school students scribbling racial slurs and graffiti about white pride. To grown men harassing and groping women because it’s their right under Trump.

And, through it all, Trump stayed silent.

Well, not exactly silent. He complained about people being mean to him on Twitter and placed Ben Carson, the man who thinks the pyramids were grain silos, into the position of the head of the Department of Education. The masses will now become even more uneducated but they’ll know the Bible right down to every last hate filled corner. I don’t think the more positive and altruistic verses will have a place in Trump’s world.

I’m terrified for my friends. For my black and brown friends and my gay and pan friends, for my friends who “don’t pass” and my friends who do, for my friends who hold their LGBTQ children close and hope for the next four years. And I’m scared for those of us living in the US’s shadow, because if Trump starts lobbing bombs, just because they’re there, that border is not going to hold back retaliatory radiation.

On this cold and quiet Remembrance Day, I feel like history is repeating itself.

poppies-and-full-moon

Poppies under the full moon

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4 thoughts on “Remembrance Day revisited…

  1. i don’t take any pleasure in noting that there actually was some of this hatred springing up during the campaigning, before the vote. There were news stories that sounded like an uptick in such violence or threat. Now, yeah, lots of it. And I’m one who thinks this probably is going to increase, and likely this part might look like “not so much” when looking back at it.

    I have been in fear for the whole world. Sure, for myself, and for people I love. But certainly also for the rest of the world too. Heck, I was upset about what having that guy RUNNING FOR OFFICE was doing to international relations. I often was impatient for the voting, wanting to imagine all those people all over the world breathing a sigh of relief. I wanted to assure them that we US-ians are not totally dangerous after all. It was all just some wild talk. Now? OMG. There’s the potential for wars of every kind, sure, and also many kinds of economic meltdown. Terrifying.

    The immediate effects (like you described) I am *somewhat* shielded from because I live in California. Here there’s a lot of mourning and fear and anger — it is possible to discuss it even with strangers or aquiantences, to some degree. Generally people are horrified, some more than others.

    I’m sorry I don’t have anything reassuring to say. Well, I can say that in the circles I travel in there is also a clear mandate to band together more in some way. To support each other. Small comfort. We’re all exhausted from the election. Some of us did more than ever in this election, in various ways, along with the barrage of hostility and just garbage in the “campaign”. It’s so demoralizing — all of it — and now we all look ahead to truly being required to do more at an entirely different level, and possibly while there’s real danger in doing so.

  2. I can tell you that my head is still spinning over our recent election. There are no words for my disgust, but in spite of recent events please remember that the people who behave this way feed on fear. As American’s we have become far too complacent, but we are wide awake now. The popular vote was not won by Mr. Trump, In spite of our recent complacency we know the difference between right, and wrong. The majority will not stand for this deplorable behavior. G-uno

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