Ophelia Crane

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An Open Letter to America

Posted by opheliacrane on June 14, 2016 at 8:50 PM

  Dear America,

I can’t.

I wanted to post something on my Facebook, my Twitter, but I can’t. I just can’t. Not anymore. Because it’s all the same drivel that everyone else is saying. “It’s a tragedy, a travesty, a horrifying thing that shouldn’t be happening in a society so diverse and blah, blah, fucking blah.”

Not that any of it is any less true, I just can’t.

I feel like I’m living that Groundhog’s Day movie in that I can almost predict the course of events from this point out. Citizens will grieve. We will change our profile pictures to honor the fallen. We will rant in endless posts about banning guns and Islam and faggots and the media. The politicians will feed our fears and fan the flames until we are so frightened of what may come for us that we will vote for the loudest can in lieu the most qualified. Laws might be passed, but probably not. If they are, they will be ineffective and almost laughable. And next week, we’ll be on to the next story about how Kim K had the nerve to wear flip flops and cornrows to some black-tie gala in Hollywood.
 
And we’ll all go back to sleep until someone else dies and then the cycle turns all over again. We will do it over and over again because we are not learning anything from these events. We are not doing anything to change ourselves as a society, because, truly, that is the only way things like this will stop. We all have to move towards evolution or we will disintegrate like so much paper in a campfire.

So…I can’t. I just can’t. The ability to stop and think has abandoned us for the most part. We are only reactionary in our responses. We are screaming in rage at each other. We are shifting blame to whoever is the most vulnerable or convenient at the time. We are even resorting to making up horror stories so to pull in those few who are still questioning the lie of they are all out to get us. In short, we’ve stopped thinking and started reacting. We’ve de-evolved to our reptilian brains in a world that needs calm and reflection instead of striking.

And in doing so, we are ripping ourselves apart from the inside.

I just can’t. Not in this time, not in this place, because even as I write this, I know that while I might touch someone out there, you’ll forget. You’ll forget because Johnny Depp is divorcing his wife and Steph Curry was tempted by a ‘thot’. You’ll forget because there is a new season of “The Voice” or “Survivor” or “Game of Thrones” coming. You’ll forget because staying asleep is more preferable to the powers that be than the alternative. Being toddlers crying in the moment is much better than learning about what it is that has made us cry. And so, you’ll forget because toddlers forget their tears when something sweet, bright and shiny comes around. Maybe it’ll be next week or next month, but this open letter to you will disappear in the annals of internet history, buried somewhere beneath the cavalcade of Donald Trump’s rantings.

It has been said that those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it. It has also been said that insanity is doing something over and over again expecting different results. So here we are in the same position as we were when Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, Newtown, Columbine, Colorado happened. We have not learned and we are insane.
 
I want to believe that we are better than what we have become and I can’t tell you that in any better way than that. We are better than this – ALL of this. But until we all figure that out, I can’t. Until we stop blaming entire religions on a handful of misguided fools, until we stop screaming over one another instead of listening to one another, until we stop seeing things like sexual orientation, gender, race, and religion as crimes punishable by death, until we realize that at the end of the day we all want the same things in this world, until we just start acting like human beings...I simply can’t. Sorry. I’m too tired.
 
On the day someone hears that not every Muslim is a terrorist and believes it, maybe I will.
On the day politicians learn that just banning everything in sight is a band aid solution and instead, start digging out the root of a problem to solve it, maybe then I will.
On the day men stop thinking that women owe them for that drink, that date, that phone number, I will.
On the day that everyone realizes that the words ‘transgender’ and ‘homosexual’ do not equal ‘pervert’, I will.
On the day that all religions are seen as tools of peace and not weapons for control and war, I will.
On the day that race and culture are celebrated by everyone, I will.
 
Until then, y’all. I can’t. For real. I can’t.

Wearily Yours,

-- O 

 


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