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Thursday, May 10, 2018

Physically ill



A rage is building in me. Part is built on the fact little effort is made toward any restoration of the physical world we have overwhelmed with plastic and vehicle emissions. Another cornerstone is the worldwide eradication of living things, plant and animal.

But the worst, the worst of all, is our inhuman treatment of strangers who deserve the same treatment as friends and neighbors. Two native Americans pulled by police from a college tour. I think of all the people in college and in working who I met, who were of other races.

What the hell is wrong with us. Who is poisoning so many minds to act out like this on essentially a daily basis. I have an acquaintance who made it known she would not board any plane on which she saw an Asian face. Her choice, her loss, her stupidity. She is my age, raised to be a bigot and never saw reason to change.

But a new generation is no better. A black woman asleep in a university common room and the police are summoned. Revolting behavior. Anyone desperate enough to know need only have awakened her and asked. And deserved any scathing remark, though it probably would not have been forthcoming.

Two black men waiting in Starbucks for their business partner. The police are called. I’ve waited in Starbucks often, sometimes doing nothing and ordering nothing for half an hour, forty-five minutes, waiting for chronically late friends and relatives to show up. My white face was not shown the door.

I don’t know what to do past supporting candidates, showing up at protests and rallies, participating in drives, giving money. I’m open to suggestions. I suppose the pessimists among us are right; it’s all too little too late. Well, shame on us for not stirring our comfortable asses fifty years ago, when we knew artificial sweeteners and fast foods were deadly.

What are our suggestions. Throw them all out. A mountain of useless rage. We are well past smacking sense into any one, overpaid politicians down to racists having rants in public restaurants. When will we all be sick of it? How can it change? How will it work? I don’t know.


30 comments:

  1. So many have turned their backs on compassion and empathy. I hardly recognize my country these days.

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  2. I think we can only do what we can do ourselves and gently speak to people who seem to hold views we consider lacking in compassion and understanding. Yes, it is dismaying that we seem to be in the position we are in. And it is true we cannot change it all ourselves, but we cannot, either, give up. You do so much Joanne. I think you know many people who are more part of the solution and should not give up hope nor become physically ill. Education should help much of this, and it still is. I refuse to give up nor become ill. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other. As you are so good at doing.

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  3. we must not give up, at least do our best in our part of our world and lead by example xx

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  4. We have to speak up when we see any injustice. If people around the ones who did these things had said anything, would the result have been the same? Are people afraid someone would pull a gun on them if they speak up? That’s a different issue I guess. Or is it all part of the same problem?

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  5. All any one of us can do is lead by example. Do not let casual racism or other discrimination pass without a comment showing a different way to relate to people. When hate is on the upswing, I know things look bleak. But we just have to have faith and take what action we can.

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  6. I often think about how I'm treated because I'm Caucasian as opposed to the treatment people with darker skin might receive. It's very disturbing. I don't know what to do except lead by example.

    Love,
    Janie

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  7. Change seems to be slower than predicted.

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  8. Difficult situations happening too often as if those involved have no access to news to know better. Very upsetting.
    Fact is, society is on edge because of terrorism...if you see something, say something. People are. In cases where dark skin people are called about, those events will get in the news whether or not racism happens. There are places, situations a lot of folks of any skin color will make effort to stay away from because of consequences that have potential for bad outcome. Being treated badly has no boundaries. People will learn to be more sensitive. I have to have faith that is true.

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  9. I hope your friend doesn't ever have to come to any of our hospitals in the St Louis area, she would be very upset. Many of our doctors, nurses, assistants are not Caucasian. They are US citizens, maybe born here, maybe not, but citizens (naturalized), nonetheless. She would receive excellent care here, even though she looks down on others like she does.

    My daughter, is of Korean descent, and is an RN. She graduated Summa Cum Laude in her class. She started out in the medical intensive care unit where people have serious, life threatening, sometimes non survivable, illnesses. Now she has transferred to the cardiology unit. Serious situations. It must be hard on racists when they go into medical facilities in larger cities. A frightening situation for them, totally created in their own mind.

    My son, who is also of Korean descent, has been serving in the United States Air Force almost 14 years. So I guess your friend would be looking down on him, too.

    What's interesting is that my kids and others like them continue to contribute so much to our country and to the well being of others, no matter how they are treated by people like your friend. I wonder what your friend contributes to the good of anyone or anything. There must be something.

    We are living in strange times now it seems to me. Ten years ago, I would never have thought that we would have the social climate that we do now. Even two years ago the social climate wasn't like this. This is starting to feel depressing and a bit frightening to me.

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    Replies
    1. Did you actually read the post??

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    2. Should Fish More - Did you? I think Susie was addressing the part where Joanne said she has a friend who would not board a plane with someone with an Asian face on it.

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  10. Hari OM
    I feel that same sickness, Joanne... and maintain that we each of us can only take responsbility for being the example we wish to see in the world. It's an ebb and flow; currently, the undertow is bringing up the silt of society, but the eddies will cleanse it and it will drop away again. This doesn't make the things you describe right, not in the least. In the now of a thing, what we do is speak up, as you are doing. You shine a light and lead by example... the light may be flickering a bit in the wind at the moment, but it's strong and has some burning still to do! YAM xx

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  11. I too feel the sickness and the rage.
    However (and it is a small however) that offensive behaviour is being noticed. And reported. Which is tiny step in the right direction.

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  12. Talk to the youngsters, help them keep their ideals as they grow up and go out into the world...show them what past generations did in the face of tyranny at the risk of their lives and, above all, show them how to organise.

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  13. I think social media is having a negative effect on folks making it so easy for them to call folks names when not in person (called a turd that needed to be flushed down recently on fb). I like to think there is less hatred and bad behavior or discrimination nowadays than in the past but the instant news brings more news of incidents or outrageous behavior to us daily, outrageous headlines sell ratings and news. One thing that makes me rage is the polarization in our country which seems to be much more prevalent than I feel it was in the past.

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  14. I don't think things are worse than they ever were, we are just hearing about it more with cameras in every phone and public forums like Facebook and Twitter to post things on. Unfortunately the forums also allow the bigots and racists a platform.

    We had an incident in Canada that just came to light, in Lethbridge, Alberta. Very disturbing video to watch. How do you reach people who have been brought up to think it's okay to talk like that to other people? I tend to trust the younger generation because they truly feel the whole earth is theirs to roam, and that almost always brings with it the acceptance of a wide range of people of every colour, religion, temperament and occupation. Travel is a great educator. But then there are the kids who never set foot outside of their town or region, who have been taught white supremacy from the day they were born - they are a tough nut to crack, and the reason it's hard to make headway.

    Just keep on doing what you're doing, Joanne, as we all must.

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  15. I dunno, Joanne. I really dont. Keep your children well.

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  16. Generous, kind, and thoughtful people seldom make news but the ignorant, stupid and evil people do. Today their voices are more heard as they have been given a platform by our governing officials and by the press who is making more money than ever sensationalizing it. I also read of “heroes” everyday who put their lives on the line to save others. We should not despair. We are moving forward; it just seems that it is not fast enough.

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  17. Our lack of answers doesn't mean we should just give up. I don't see you ever giving up. I truly think your blog helps. But more than that your positive active attitude helps even more. I imagine you go through your day respecting all people. Not everyone notices good daily examples but many do.

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  18. I do hope things will change with more people like you who are aware of what is going on.Here too.

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  19. If I didn't know better (and maybe I don't) I'd think there has been some unseen contagion that's washed over our country.

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  20. I've been reading about all this and more this week. It's disgusting. One Canadian woman hurled insults and racist rants at a few Muslim young men in a public place this week. Totally uncalled for. It went viral and her employer thankfully fired her. She deserved it. I hope it will make her pause and think about her bad behavior but I fear it will only make her more racist. I have no answers for you but I do think those in power have to hold people more accountable for such things.

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  21. I agree with the several commenters that said we have to lead by example and hope others will join the cause. The cycle of teaching prejudice to one's children has to stop; everyone needs to realize we are all the same, no matter what color we are or where we come from.

    betty

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  22. We must all try to be good people, and treat others as we would hope to be treated. No more, no less.

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  23. It's upsetting to me to read of things like this happening still. The amount of prejudice and racism still prevalent in your country astounds me daily. I wish I knew a solution.

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  24. There are so many ugly things that go on and they make the news, but take some heart as the more scientific consensus is that things are getting better. Hard to see and believe at times, and I often wonder.

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  25. I've read about these incidents as well. I think that a small amount of upset to have as a motivator, perhaps, is not so bad. My problem, and I may not be alone, is stopping myself from feeling enraged to the point of fatigue. That sort of thing does nothing to help the situation.

    Vote, gather, donate, march...what more can we do?

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  26. This might cheer you up a bit. It is so important to stay positive and focused. http://www.cc.com/video-clips/w4xnqn/the-daily-show-with-trevor-noah-jon-meacham---hope-for--the-soul-of-america--in-the-tragic-trump-era---extended-interview?xrs=synd_facebook_050918_tds_5

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  27. All we can do is encourage children … all children … to show common courtesy to everyone they meet.
    No one likes everyone, nor do they have to but a certain generosity of spirit makes for a much pleasanter world.

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