On the Inside Looking In

Does becoming part of the elite world of publishing, Hollywood, and the academy mean you have to give up perspective?

We need to connect courageously with the rejection, the fear, the vulnerability that Trump’s victory has inflicted on us, without turning away or numbing ourselves or lapsing into cynicism. We need to bear witness to what we have lost: our safety, our sense of belonging, our vision of our country. We need to mourn all these injuries fully, so that they do not drag us into despair, so repair will be possible…. Because let’s be real: we always knew this shit wasn’t going to be easy. Colonial power, patriarchal power, capitalist power must always and everywhere be battled, because they never, ever quit. We have to keep fighting, because otherwise there will be no future—all will be consumed. Those of us whose ancestors were owned and bred like animals know that future all too well, because it is, in part, our past. And we know that by fighting, against all odds, we who had nothing, not even our real names, transformed the universe. Our ancestors did this with very little, and we who have more must do the same. This is the joyous destiny of our people—to bury the arc of the moral universe so deep in justice that it will never be undone.

Writing for the New Yorker and battling capitalist power. Keeping it unreal.

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5 thoughts on “On the Inside Looking In

  1. Does the Francis Effect help with perspective?

    I’m a progressive who cheers Rachel Maddow and sneers at Bill O’Reilly. I live in an affluent, diverse, urban area where pickup trucks are as rare as Trump signs. I live in a bubble, an echo chamber where my own ideas get reinforced. We may have that in common at least. Trump’s election came as a shock, a jolt to everything I know. Perhaps I haven’t visited your towns and neighborhoods enough. I haven’t talked to a middle-age man with calloused hands whose factory job is gone, and is desperate for someone, anyone, to shake things up. Perhaps I’m not listening enough to those of you who feel like your traditional views on marriage and sexuality are disparaged by secular liberals. Pope Francis talks about those who are excluded. Many of you must feel a sense of cultural and economic exclusion I have not tried hard enough to understand. The only answer for this is encounter, the pope tells us, meeting each other. Caricatures are easy to paint on social media. But I know you’re more complex.

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  2. They feel a lot. I still wonder how they get up in the morning. Do you think they go from padded bedroom to padded car to padded office? Wash, rinse repeat. Well, for the country’s sake I hope they stay in therapy for the next four years and keep cocooning themselves in their feelings and disillusionment. Maybe, doubling up on their safety pin avatars. Has anyone at HuffPo killed themselves, yet, or stroked out? Maybe I can sell them gold safety pins and a certificate of authentic angst.

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  3. Do you think that those protesting DAPL are keeping it real? Look at how our nation tolerates their treatment. Or before Black Lives Matter, look at how our nation tolerated/ignored the mass incarceration and shooting of Blacks? Look at the climate change deniers who have key posts in our government despite the fact that temperatures and sea levels are rising. I could go on.

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