Dead gods and rich people

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It’s hard not to sit back and gawk at the great ironies in the world today. The United States elected a reality TV star as a disastrous president who nearly destroyed the beacon of democracy in four short years. Italy elected a fascist Prime Minister just 79 years after Benito Mussolini nearly destroyed the place that introduced democracy to the world. And the son of Indian immigrants has become the Prime Minister of England, the remains of the fallen empire that once counted India among its most-valuable possessions. I can’t help but shake my head in disbelief sometimes. But then I remember that the concentration of wealth in the world today has bought and paid for these figureheads much the same way that fundraising paid for the menagerie of animals at my local carrousel.

Quinn Dombrowski from Berkeley, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

To say nothing of what’s happening in France and Germany and everywhere else in the world where people are trying to flee tyranny for the promise of something better. Maybe even a cherry position as Prime Minister of the country that once oppressed you.

My own family arrived on these golden shores broken and with enough trauma for many human lifetimes. Just three generations later, they embrace the idea that America is somehow exclusive for those who already own a boarding pass. If you didn’t win that lottery, you’re absolutely hosed, and good riddance.

The Germans hated the Italians, the Italians hated the Irish, the Irish hated all of the above. Every generation hated on the ones who came after them. We still deal with hatred for Jewish people, the likes of which raises its ugly head every few weeks when we don’t get distracted by our hatred for Asians. We only see in political boundaries. We no longer recognize our shared humanity, just lines on a map.

We keep electing hatred and avarice, because those things keep us nicely divided, and divided we cannot stand against the oppressiveness of our runaway capitalism – our dead god. Dead gods and rich people don’t care, because that mechanism is the oil that keeps everything running smooth.

When will we finally understand that we can unite around good things, around common interests mutually beneficial not only to our own species but to every species we share this world with? Why were we born with blindfolds to our hubris and not eyes to see the ways in which we all are tethered to this blue dot?

It is hard not to sit back and gawk at the great ironies of the world we live in today. But irony has ripened into acceptance and acceptance into a narcotic haze through which we judge each other through keystrokes in the comments on the worldwide web on which we are trapped awaiting the great sting or salvation of death inflicted by a deity that evolved from the rank cauldron of fear that is our being.

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