Ted Cruz, Tear Gas & Tombstones

Inauguration Day Take-Aways:

As a cold, grey mist descended on Washington yesterday morning, a shroud of gloom settled into my psyche as I braced for four years of reactionary rhetoric and massive roll-backs of human and civil rights, except, of course, the right to pack heat.

Just when I thought I couldn’t possibly feel worse, Ted Cruz materialized on my TV set, fresh from the Snake Dimension that spawned him, and began spewing his customary delusional, partisan fairytales.  He cited Obama’s “failed economic agenda from the last eight years” as the reason for Trump’s triumph. Apparently the colossally ruinous  economic policies of the Bush years–two wars, tax-cuts and the collapsed of the housing industry–did not get any airtime in the Snake Dimension.

Like a rabid sidewinder, Cruz flung his venom at Hillary Clinton, the Democrats, and, of course, Barack Obama, who Cruz blamed for every problem, foreign and domestic,  from Putin’s aggression to the plight of American teachers.

And then it hit me:

Trump getting elected was not the worst fate that could have befallen us. But for Trump,  we might have elected Ted Cruz, and that, my friends, would have,  most certainly, precipitated the end of all things.

Later in the afternoon, just after Trump took the oath, I saw the first tear gas canisters fly into a crowd of protesters.  Back in the Nixon years, I became collateral damage when D.C. Police launched tear gas into a large crowd of peaceful protesters to stop a few vandals from beating up a bus.  If you haven’t experienced tear gas, I don’t recommend it.  But for those of us who have felt its blinding sting , tear gas, used indiscriminately  to control a crowd, remains an emblem of oppression.  I understand that the destruction of property cannot be tolerated, but surely some other means to stop the offenders, rather than blanketing the entire crowd could have been used.   I don’t think Former DC Police Chief Cathy Lanier would have been so trigger happy.

Trump’s Inaugural Address, which seems to have panicked people on seven continents, came as no great shock to me;  his rhetoric was consistent with what he said on the campaign trail.   In places, he spoke quite poetically about his gruesome vision of America, most notably his reference to the “rusted-out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation.”

I have a suggestion for those abandoned factories, President Trump:  turn them all into training centers for 21st century jobs, entrepreneurships, and studios for cultural advancement– music, art, film, writing, etc.  Working in a factory, mindlessly performing one task all day, jumping, eating and peeing to the sound of a whistle, is not a good job for a sentient being.  Factory work might once have paid a good wage, owing to the unions Republicans want to destroy, but not anymore.  Bringing back factories is like bringing back trans fats.

Seriously, right-wing movers and shakers, instead of trying to turn back time, begin to acknowledge the reality of the inevitable future.  Don’t waste my tax dollars trying to resurrect the dead, instead help those left behind to move into a better future.

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