These Days

I tried to stand up and fly straight, but it wasn’t easy with that sumbitch Reagan in the White House. (From the movie Raising Arizona)

I try to write my personal stories, but it isn’t easy with Trump in the White House.

half mastMy writing group meets tomorrow morning, but today, families from Guatemala are in Tijuana hoping for asylum in the U.S. Tonight, in Tijuana, parents and children will sleep on the ground, again. They’ve walked for a month. Only a very few will be allowed to cross the border and apply for asylum. Then husbands may be separated from their wives, mothers from their children. Their suffering is meant to deter others from coming.

In 1939, when the ship of German Jewish refugees was denied entry into the United States, Roosevelt also wanted to deter others from coming. The ship went back to Europe. Many died.

It’s hard to write about my grandchildren, sleeping safely in their beds. These days.

Trump’s White House has cut regulations on air and water pollution, cut funding to fight climate change, eliminated references to climate change in government documents and websites, and withdrawn from the Paris Climate Accord. Trump favors coal mining and fracking. over wind and solar power.  (He claims that windmills kill thousands of birds, like eagles.)

It’s hard to write about spotting a pileated woodpecker in the park. These days.

Our intelligence agencies have revealed that Russia interfered in the election to benefit Trump. I expect it will happen again in the election in the fall. Mueller is investigating, but some congressmen are threatening the investigation. I watch mainstream news and read mainstream newspapers and I am convinced they are trying to protect a corrupt leader.

I taught my sons to be honorable men. But if a dishonorable man is in the White House yet so many support him, how do I keep my equilibrium?

Trump’s White House wants to reduce benefits and limit access for the poor. What about the poor who are disabled, children, elderly?  Must they suffer?  When I was young I worked for a time as a welfare case worker in a poor black neighborhood near Washington, D.C. I didn’t see the color TVS my neighbors claimed were paid for with welfare largesse. I only saw poverty.

My sons are browner than I, their father Indian. At rallies, Trump stirs up hatred of those who are not white, Christian, native-born.

Do I need to worry for the safety of my sons? These days.

Today, the Washington Post asserted that Trump has lied 3,001 times since he became President. Meanwhile he rails against “Fake News”; that is, any news that doesn’t suit his purposes.  I fact check obsessively.

And all the beautiful, or bold, or silly, or meandering thoughts that I might once have written about peter out and die before I can collect them into the framework of a story. These days.

Copyright May 1, 2018

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