Ignorance is Power; Knowledge is Bliss

ramadan

This is a Chalk drawing I made of Turkey during Ramadan. Ramadan in a mostly Muslim country is like Christmas in a mostly Christian country. People are happy, lights and music fill town squares, vendors sell mass-marketed garbage and foods that’ll tack on 10 pounds. This trip was a changing point for me-Knowledge is bliss.

I’ve been having adult moments as I realize many of my friends are Trump supporters. It has led me to some serious discussions with myself. Here is a guy who made hatred and intolerance as his campaign promise. How can seemly Steve, shindig Cheryl and tenderhearted Tari like this guy?

The first friends who came out as supporters did not surprise me. We used to laugh about how I couldn’t be barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen if I don’t get myself knocked up. They’d offer to do the job themselves, and I’d give them the finger. Yet, there was always part of me that wondered when they’d go quiet as the chief’s gay dad stepped into the room. It didn’t surprise me, and since they declared support based on racism, sexism and bigotry, I dropped them as fast as I dropped my bangs after the ’80s.

It’s my Trump-supporting friends I’m only learning about now that really hurts. More thought has to go into Shakespeare’s famous question, “To friend or not to friend?”

fuckrock

Fuck Rock: This rock was well placed on a steep mountain trail. Just when I thought I was near the top, I rounded the corner and saw that I was only half-way. Someone carved this into the rock when they reached the same point.

These friends are not racist or bigots. Brother Trump was just talkin’ like a dude when he bragged about sexual assault (a dude in his sixties). He never mocked a disabled man, he made the same gestures to describe Ted Cruz (a man he admires bigly). Certainly, he didn’t mean that ALL Mexicans are rapists and drug dealers. He just meant…uh, what did they say on Fox News? I forgot what he really meant, but something else. He’s right when he says that terrorists from “over there” on that one continent…not sure which…are coming over here by the thousands. They want to do all sorts of bad things like shoot kids in schools and set fire to religious institutions.

These beliefs, along with the idea that he’s Making America Great Again, stems from ignorance. I’ve approached many Americans who believe that you are either a college educated wimp who never worked a day in your life, or you are a hard-working good ‘ole uneducated person with Christian values. You couldn’t have any combination of the above. It’s the working class against the elitists. In all fairness, I’ve known plenty of people who do fall into both categories. Many people I know are either both college educated AND very hard workers, or they were never educated AND completely lazy. Many others are educated and Christian or uneducated Satan worshipers. But I’ve found that announcing your college education does more harm than good in many businesses. I’ve often been given the advice to underplay education during my interviews, or it might hurt my chances for the job. Ignorance is power.

America’s long-standing push toward ignorance is what hired DT, and the benefit will be to the historians who are writing like mad. Yet, as I watch my poor country crumble  like the retaining wall that was improperly built in my yard, there is room for bliss.

With knowledge of history and current events, I can see where we are going. Oh, it’s bad for sure. People have already been hurt. Rises like this are similar to ones that led to world wars and civil wars. There is no bliss in this, but there is comfort in knowing what may happen ahead of time. There is comfort in having the ability to prepare oneself for the changes and challenges. There is comfort in knowing that after Germany’s radical politics they became a more liberal nation, opening arms to refugees, providing free healthcare, leading in climate change alterations, and making rad beer and pretzels. Let us not forget that they got there at a terrible cost.

I’m not putting a silver lining on a cloud. I’m using science to predict the weather pattern so I know when to prepare for the flood. Because when this is all over, I’m hoping that we will determine that knowledge is power and ignorance is bliss.

sandsmiley

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2 thoughts on “Ignorance is Power; Knowledge is Bliss

  1. As an “add-on” to you brilliant analysis of current American reality, I would add something. While there are dangerous similarities between DT and Herr Hitler, there are few similarities between Germans and Americans. Germans are a race of people who long ago became united through their bloody struggles against the Roman empire. Key word: united. As one people. Americans are not a race but a melting pot of opportunity seekers with a crazy mix of races, beliefs and dreams with huge discrepancies of income and opportunities. The “states” may be united politically, but the people are not. Germany under Hitler was a real nation. America is not a real nation, it’s a political convenience supporting a global military empire. That’s why it doesn’t even have a name. After the defeat of the Third Reich, surviving Germans were viciously treated by the Allies and forcefully divided between the Western and Eastern military conquerors. Luckily for some Germans, the western predators decided to boost Germany’s economy to thwart further communist advancement. Even more luckily, the USSR communist experiment failed. The post-war tribulations drew Germans together to rebuild, as a nation, as a race.

    None of these things apply to America. Like Rome, America will be defeated in its hegemonic global military/corporate empire “out there” while being systematically gutted within. America doesn’t have a racial or “tribal” center to fall back on: that belonged to the native tribes and is essentially gutted as a force. Ancient Rome, like America today, was a loose collection of different races, tribes and tongues held together under a totalitarian military dictatorship but most Romans did not much care as long as they benefited from the largess of the Empire. Of historical interest, Rome did not become a nation until 1861 when it was declared to be the United Kingdom of Italy. As an empire, it was essentially crushed around 400 AD. So, if history repeats itself, it would be a very long time in the future before “America” could become a real nation, a real people, united as one race rather than as an empire of mixed races that exploit, distrust and hate each other as is currently the case. So, first must come the defeat of the empire. Then bloody tribulations lasting hundreds of years. Then, either a real nation will emerge, or a bunch of small semi-independent states fighting each other or forming alliances at need or expedience-as Europe experienced for a thousand years.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I always love how much time you take in your responses. You are right, there are some differences, and knowledge is bliss…when it doesn’t feel like a kick to the ovaries, that is. I do wonder, though, just how different it really is. In my travels I find that people, in general, really just want the same thing. In my own country, the most liberal area (the areas that are most welcoming of diversity) are the areas with the most diversity. The rural middle states that seem to be filled with the “same people” seem to be the ones most discontent. Your additional discussion gives me pause for thought. For certain, we are going to find out what happens when a group of different people undergo self-destruction.

      Liked by 1 person

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