Telling the Truth

connecting the dots of my life

Tag: interrupting and replacing our national dialogue

Outcomes predetermined

Outcomes predetermined –
No need for witnesses

News cameras keep rolling —
Capturing unwillingness
to accept self-evident truths

We have not administered
justice for all with an even hand

We have not allowed freedom for all
in this land of the free and home of the brave

We have not believed
Each person of any color or religion
is created equal and entitled
to full protection under the law

Nor have we been able to stem
today’s flood of party-line mantras
and childlike temper tantrums
from The White House

Welcome to Trump’s world and
the world in which brothers and sisters
now celebrating Black History Month
have lived all their lives

Thank you Mr. Trump
for this unexpected opportunity
to move beyond our current state
of habitual denial and fear

Now playing in your city or town
Every night of the week
No tickets needed

Several days ago I read a news report from CNN. It was about the farce of Trump’s impeachment trial. The message from black folks for white folks: “Welcome to our world.” Ironically, this is Black History Month. What will we make of it?

The meaning of justice has always been skewed against black people in this country. The movie Just Mercy shows how difficult it is in this so-called ‘enlightened age’ for black citizens to get justice. The so-called impeachment trial simply used the same tactics, this time to the advantage of a white male President.

  • a pre-ordained verdict
  • jury nullification (deliberate rejection of evidence or refusal to apply the law)
  • the judge as a prop, offering a pretense of impartiality
  • one of similar trials in which white men are favored

This is a rare opportunity for all of us. Especially, but not only white citizens. It’s still Black History Month. What better topic than the state of our union?

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 11 February 2020
Photo of Lynching Memorial found at heraldnet.com

Interrupt and Replace

I woke up this morning feeling down, weary and discouraged. ‘Dis-couraged.’ An interesting word. It means I had courage ‘back there,’ and now I perceive a deficit. How can this be?

If I go back to my childhood and teenage years, I know when dis-couragement happened and why I need to attend to it, lest I lose my voice or become an enabler.

As a young girl I knew when the flames started licking around my legs, weakening my focus and my courage. Back then I persistently carried focus and courage into every punishing situation inflicted upon me. First by my father, and later by men with power to inflict punishment on me as a professional. It’s called bully behavior.

One gift of being a childhood survivor with PTSD is the ability to feel when certain dynamics are in the air. Dynamics neither we nor the person in control are necessarily able to change.

The behavior we’ve seen thus far from our new president is the behavior we’ll most likely see for the next years of his tenure. We already saw it in the presidential election cycle. Nothing has changed except this: the power of the office of President of the United States of America now protects him.

So here I am today, feeling dis-couraged by the events of this past week.

What can I do to change things? I can’t change or replace him. Nor can I change or replace myself.

Back to my father. As a child I was powerless. There was no way I could replace him with a different father. Nor could I interrupt his agenda for me. Especially when he determined I needed to be punished.

I’m an adult now. I’ve done my homework. I’ve learned not just to interrupt and replace the internal voices that mess with me, but the voice of my father talking about himself. He died in 2010.

Now there’s Mr. Trump. I want to interrupt him. The presidency isn’t all about him. Nor is it a platform for bully-talk toward and about others. One painful example will do: his language and behavior toward women who are, apparently, there to serve the desires of his heart.

So how can I do my bit to interrupt Mr. Trump’s monologue and replace it with contrasting voices? Not in debate form, but as a proactive, fearless way to change the conversation, the topic, and the outcomes. The Women’s March is an example of other mass interruptions that changed the topic, the political conversation, and the outcomes.

I want to be part of a movement to interrupt political bully talk and replace it with dialogues that make a difference. I’d love to hear what you’re thinking about. Or how your courage is holding up.

Thanks for listening!

Elouise

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 30 January 2017
Response to WordPress Daily Prompt: Replacement

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