AMERICA THE BRUISED

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America has been injured, bruised, and healing will take time as the smoke is clearing from the recent elections. Two Americas have been revealed. On the one hand, we have those citizens who truly believe in the ideals of democracy and equal opportunity for all. On the other hand, the covers have been pulled off of a large group of Americans who don’t believe in the ideals of democracy for those other than themselves. They have been living side-by-side with other Americans, but the catalyst of a Black American as president, in the form of Barack Obama, seems to have pushed some people over the edge.

With this as a backdrop, Americans have experienced a gradual erosion of civility the past four years. This will not be healed overnight. Donald Trump has done as much as he can to create schism among the American people. The toxicity spread throughout America has revealed a wound that can only grow if nothing is done soon.

The 2020 elections have revealed what has been there forever. The country was founded on violence, and violence has continued. So, the vitriol exhibited by a wide swath of voters has been there all along, and this group has been disproportionately represented by supporters of Donald Trump. The boiling hatred and resentment have revealed the adherents of the Confederacy who have not gotten over the fact that they LOST the Civil War.

It is probable that due to voter suppression tactics a lot of American’s votes were not counted. Being able to participate in the political process is one of the major hallmarks of American democracy, so in that regard, we have already lost a lot.

What in years past was demonstrated in a land grab from Native Americans and the forced labor (enslavement) of Black people—which later morphed into Jim Crow and violent killer cops, segregation and all manner of mistreatment—is finally taking its toll on America. There is something that exists that is called Karma by adherents of Eastern religious philosophy. If it is taken to be true, then the Karmic reckoning of America is at hand. And it is bigger than the office of the presidency can fix alone, because this has been a long time coming.

To be sure, there are a large number of Americans of all cultural and racial groups who genuinely do believe in the tenets of democracy and the rights of all citizens. The American democratic model is one of the best social experiments on the planet. This is probably why so many people risk life and limb to come here. They envision a better quality of life than what they had at home.

Regarding African Americans – yes, life has been very rough in America. But as the saying goes, diamonds are created under pressure. Another version of this is seen in the building of muscular strength that is the result of exercise. The lesson that life on Earth gives us is that strength comes with resistance. Our challenges and hardships are the vehicles through which success can be garnered. Triumph arises out of tragedy.

Every African American descendant of slaves in this country has had to overcome incredible hindrances, yet today many are succeeding beyond what anyone could have imagined years ago. Do we think that Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Denmark Vesey, Frederick Douglass, et al, could have envisioned a time when an Oprah Winfrey, Bob Johnson, Tyler Perry, Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Jay-Z and Beyoncé, Venus and Serena Williams, Simone Biles, and numerous other high achievers would have reached their successes in such a relatively short period of time post-slavery? Black Americans have come a mighty long way!

So, we are at a crossroads. America is faced with whether or not we will rise and slay the racist and violent sociological demons within or find a way to live together in peaceful and productive harmony. This will not be determined by politicians; it will depend on whether or not those on the side of righteousness OUTNUMBER the selfish laggards that want separation and genocide as part of their agenda. The next chapter of America is being written now, and we will know the answers soon. Hopefully, we will get good news! In the meanwhile, reparations need to seriously be considered and provided to American Descendants of Slavery for the suffering endured. A Luta Continua.

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