One Week Later

November 15, 2016 § Leave a comment

In perusing the many social media posts some of my friends have posted in the wake of last Tuesday’s election, I have observed a few things – fear and anger. The fear comes mostly from one side of the equation; the anger from both sides.

My liberal friends are angry that a man who pledged to eliminate women’s reproductive rights, roll back gay marriage, and basically pledged to get rid of access to health care for millions of people who never had it before could be elected. (I know, he promised to replace it with something better, but details are still a bit sketchy as to what “better” looks like.)

My conservative friends see the protests that have come out of last week’s election as simple whining, thuggery, sheer lawlessness, and disrespect of our institutions, including the electoral process and the flag. From where I sit, they are missing the point.

If you or your parents or your grandparents had spent years trying to gain something the rest of us take for granted, how would you react to the possibility it might be taken away? Would you “unite” behind the person you see as the main threat? Would you simply get over it? If so, I’ll be the first to admit you are a better person than I.

Because of what I see as a divide, or perhaps it is better thought of as a fracturing, since it falls along any number of lines, I wrote “Across The Divide” immediately after the election (shared in an earlier post). That song could also be read as a lament to the end of a relationship.

I decided to write something stronger, knowing I risk losing some of my friends. However, it is what I sense going on as well as what some are afraid will happen.

Tear It Down

Coat hangers in back alleys, ropes dangling from oak trees
What’s happening to us; won’t somebody answer me?
Thought we were created equal; guess that wasn’t really true
Why should we look down on someone else ’cause they don’t look the way we do?

I think it’s time we tear it down and start all over again
Give the least of us a greater voice; that’s something I can defend
I look around and I see the fear there in my brother’s eyes
They worry that this talk of strength and values is only hatred in disguise

Jim Crow is on the comeback trail; Phyllis is laughing from her grave
150 years later, some still think the only good black is a slave
Guess equality is just for some, thought that it was meant for all
The rich get richer and the rest of us fight; surely, we’re headed for a fall

So many fought and died defending this land
Some died for what they could only dream of, some for what they held in their hand
I’ve got to think some of them are looking down
In shock ’cause they can’t understand

I think it’s time we tear it down and start all over again
Give the least of us a greater voice; that’s something I can defend
I look around and I see the fear there in my sister’s eyes
They worry that this talk of strength and values is only hatred in disguise

I think it’s time we tear it down all the way to the ground

© 2017 Walt Huntsman. All rights reserved.

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