It is not my usual approach to attempt “stream of consciousness” writing. That said I am allowing myself 20 minutes to do just that. The starting point on this endevour is the idea of “State” as in the social – political entity in which people owe allegiance too, or at least live within.
The concept of state is very much in my mind. The events of Post-Floyd America, Israel/Palestine, current South Africa all play on my mind. Add to that mix the fact that I watched the film, Free State of Jones last night.
When I was a kid things could be summed up easily. Dr Seuss had a way of doing that, everything had an easy category, and accompanying rhyme. But is it as simple as that? Barack Obama on his first presidential election night seemed to try. He said it wasn’t Red States or Blue States, but the United States. But look at the state of that union now.
Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu took the opposite rhetorical approach. The called for Post-Apartheid South Africa to be both a red and a blue state, in fact a Rainbow Nation. That too is collapsing into farm raids, economic turmoil, and general chaos. The EFF (Economic Freedom Fighters) Party in particular and it’s “Kill the Boer” rhetoric and calls for land seizure seems to ignore the economic consequences and million percent inflation of neighbouring Zimbabwe when the same policy was followed there. And this doesn’t even factor in the human tragedy of the accompanying rapes and murders of White farmers.
But political rhetoric also affects other places. MAGA America seems to create “us” and “them” rather than US (pun intended). Race relations, institutional and cultural racism have taken people to the streets, even as lock-downs are needed to deal with a global pandemic. People are dying. Dying of disease. Dying at the hands of a policing structure that makes not following every instruction of a policeman a “crime.” Policing by consent as in the UK is now nearly unknown in the US. That by the way is called a Police State.
Coexistence too is a state that is in jeopardy. There are really only two options for harmony: You can either compromise, accommodate and relate; or regulate, dominate, and exterminate. Isn’t this what it is to say to Black Americans – “Go back to Africa,” or Hispanics (of any origin) to “Go back to Mexico,” or White farmers in Africa to “Go back to Holland?”
The Middle East too – Jew and Arab. One state or two? Muslim, Christian, or Jew?
And that’s my time up.
One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish
Red State, Blue State, United States? Mere wish?
Is this a me state? Is this a you state?
Slave State, Free State, Confederate State, New States?
“These States” before 1865,
“The States” if the Nation did civil war survive
MEGA States, United States, Build a wall – we want no others
One State, Two States, What is the solution?
Wear a mask and stay at home
Why? Covid’s no worse than pollution
Rainbow State – “Boer go home”
Black Lives Matter too
What is our present state?
Oh, how I wish I knew!