The end of times.

It was really supposed to be easier than this.

The argument, the humanity, the human instinct to feel for another; to look into another’s eyes and see spirit or God or connection; to know that the past was an untenable set of circumstances with untenable results; to know that our home was always meant to be a land of promises to ourselves and each other.

We were supposed to be able to do this better, more fully, more consistently, more lovingly.

It was really supposed to be easier than this.

“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.” – Albert Einstein

Men, unarmed and unfailingly other, are being shot in the streets to serve some vague end in our name; killers cloaked in the authority of our communal power, unhinged from the reality of humanity’s reach, distant from the impact of their triggers.

Women and children, seeking only answers in the face of would-be public servants yelling from the mountaintop, announcing the inevitable destruction of our nation’s promise; women and children pressed beneath the boot of men all too eager to usher in a return to what was and never shall be again; women and children, despised for their skin, despised for their insistence on simply being, despised for reasons I thought we put to bed.

It was really supposed to be easier than this.

“It is the job of thinking people not to be on the side of the executioners.” – Albert Camus

Women, seeking only to give voice to the fear they encounter in themselves every day, are being shouted down every time they choose to speak, blamed for not caring about men, not caring about how men feel fear, too, how #NotAllMen pose threats; women, silenced by voices protected by power; women, badgered and intimidated by men by no means ready for a world where their choices might be questioned, might be punished, might be held accountable; women, forced to withdraw.

When America decided for itself that it would try to encounter the task of liberty, it chose for itself a path largely uncharted, full of promises that it barely recognized at the time of its birth. It chose freedom and it chose words to express that freedom in boundless ways. It chose the beauty that freedom and liberty would cast over between its borders. From the moment the enormity of those promises were enshrined into our being, America’s promise – its better angels – have been at war with the historical instincts of those who created it; a war between those who wrote the words and want them to mean something entirely different, and those who read those words and see them as the contract they most surely are.

Men gunned down in the street by officers of the law. Innocent people thrown out of rallies, pushed, kicked, beaten, for no harm other than being a person of color. Women and gays and lesbians and trans individuals being ridiculed and chastised for having the gall to demand some modicum of safety. Military force bandied about with a callousness of spirit we can certainly not support. Vets left to weep and freeze. Children left to starve. Corporations left to profit. Liberty thrown to the wolves for some while others laugh and scorn and criticize from their ivory tower of institutional, fundamentally anti-American privilege.

So you want to make America great again? You want to make America whole again?

Fuck that. I want to make America America again. Maybe for the first time.

I want the words enshrined in our soul to mean what they say and to affirm the truth that it was really supposed to be easier than this.

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