Telling the Truth

connecting the dots of my life

Tag: Self-deception and self-righteousness

Our original sin yet again

I wonder…
Does each nation
Each country
Have an original sin
The seed of its
Particular ignominy
Running through veins
Shot full of raging
Hormones escalating
Into tragedies
Of historic proportions
Played out in
Unnumbered permutations
Of seduction and flattery
Designed to deceive
And subdue?

It isn’t just the daily revelation of predatory behavior by public figures and officials. It’s the reality that various permutations of predatory behavior undergird the earliest foundations of our nation.

I’d describe it this way: The subduing and disappearing of some in order to pursue the welfare of a select group that viewed and still view themselves as more entitled than others.

Layer upon layer. Decade after decade. And now we’ve come to this juncture in our history without a clear understanding of how we got here, and how many were and still are subdued and disappeared. Buried beneath mountains of inspiring proclamations, and promises not kept.

I first wrote this in November 2017. Here we are, well over three years later. Damage to our nation has sky-rocketed, and disparities have intensified. This time aided and abetted by many white churches looking for an earthly savior who will do their bidding.

No matter who is in the White House, we can’t expect miracles. This long-term unfinished business still haunts us singly and together. Especially in our churches and in our neighborhoods. Are we up to the task?
Elouise

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 29 November 2017; updated and reposted 23 February 2021
Photo of Great Dismal Swamp found at smithsonianmag.com
The swamp, located in Virginia and North Carolina, once served as a refuge for Native Americans and fugitive slaves.

Our original sin

I wonder…
Does each nation
Each country
Have an original sin
The seed of its
Particular ignominy
Running through veins
Shot full of raging
Hormones escalating
Into tragedies
Of historic proportions
Played out in
Unnumbered permutations
Of seduction and flattery
Designed to deceive
And subdue?

It isn’t just the daily revelation of predatory behavior by public figures and officials. It’s the reality that various permutations of predatory behavior undergird the earliest foundations of our nation.

I’d describe it this way: The subduing and disappearing of some in order to pursue the welfare of a select group that viewed and still view themselves as more entitled than others.

Layer upon layer. Decade after decade. And now we’ve come to this juncture in our history without a clear understanding of how we got here, and how many were and still are subdued and disappeared. Buried beneath mountains of inspiring proclamations, and promises not kept.

So what am I doing about it? Besides writing, I’m reading. Today I’m focused on books that invite me to open my mind and my heart. Not simply to what happened when our country was founded, but what’s still happening today. Unrecorded, unexamined, and unacknowledged.

My newest book is Sing, Unburied, Sing, written by Jesmyn Ward. I’m also reading Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. One painful chapter at a time.

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 29 November 2017
Photo of Great Dismal Swamp found at smithsonianmag.com
The swamp, located in Virginia and North Carolina, once served as a refuge for Native Americans and fugitive slaves.

“…Contentment’s numbing trap”

Today a reader asked about James DePreist’s poem, “I’ve been weakened by the walls I’ve built.” She’s interested in the “relationship between resisting ‘contentment’s numbing trap’ and the ‘peace that passes understanding.'” Here are a few thought about this.

First, DePreist’s poem, in case you missed it. Read the rest of this entry »

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