[Sticky] Posts we want to remember
A little masterpiece by @Vestralux, posted the day after the Republican Senators voted not to allow any witnesses in the president's trial.
She is responding to this statement by @codyroo: The problem with this is that we are teetering towards Oligarchy.
Yes. We are. But we've been teetering towards oligarchy since our founding. Since before our founding. We're a nation founded on a continental genocide—you know, so white folks could own land and plant crops and make money.
We're a nation that fought a CIVIL WAR because oligarchs wished to assert their so-called "sovereign right" to continue with the chattel slavery of living human beings—all in order to maintain economic power.
While the rest of the world has been orbiting the sun, we've been leaping to the whims and caprices of the Rothschilds, the Rockefellers, the J.P. Morgans, and their like. As a result, we've become a kleptocracy.
When slavery was defeated, the Southern oligarchs created mass incarceration and the "free" labor of the prison colony. Today, its proliferation has become a privatized prison industry. Hey y'all, the more people we lock up, the richer we get! To include asylum seekers and children.
I could go on and on and on. But the point, I think, is that Americans have to wake up from our collective delusion that we were ever anything else. In fact, this is the dilemma of the entire human race as I see it: Will everyday people continue to permit the tyranny of oligarchs and kleptocrats and sociopaths—and therefore the continued annihilation of countless species, including our own(!), or will we dismantle those forces which perpetuate it?
This is why I think the rage and frustration you're feeling isn't just understandable, it's necessary. We all feel it. And we have to feel it in order to be inspired to do something.
Posted by @Cindy on 1/30/20
As a survivor, I do understand the knee jerk reactions to Kobe's death and how that can be at odds with those who adored him as an athlete. I used to think it was a curse to think of things from so many perspectives at once, but as I've aged, I've come to find it a blessing.
What Kobe did 20 +/- years ago was wrong. Period. However, he was far ahead of his time. Attitudes take ages to make a dent in mainstream thinking, much less in actions. Just 10 years prior, most had not ever even heard of the term spousal rape until the Bobbitt case, much less known there were laws about it. Neither were the terms date/acquaintance rape mainstream concepts. Most only recognized the Hollywood version-a physical beating utilized to force sex on an unwilling person. Consent wouldn't be a mainstream topic for years after Kobe's case. Even today, victims are routinely blamed by defense attorney's or judges. Back then, it was par for the course for Kobe's attorneys to do what they did. Being high profile, she dropped the criminal case. Kobe came out and apologized, and acknowledged that what he thought as a male was consent, was a far cry from what the female perspective of consent is. This was unheard of at the time. I knew my perpetrators, and above all else, I always wanted an admission of wrongdoing and an apology. At least when she went after him in the civil case, they kept it out of the spotlight, and settled. They could have played blame the victim round two, but they chose not to. That's not to say this didn't benefit Kobe as well, but his statement and apology let me believe there was consideration for the victim in these choices as well.
Kobe changed. He created his on court persona to handle the athletic and public aspects of his life, and returned to church in his private life. He understood his inability to control his power and adulation earlier, and took steps to see that it didn't happen again. He started whittling away at his Karmic debt he had created. He opened up sports programs for underprivileged youth. He backed women's sports. He had four daughters. He had to live with the fact that each one of them faced inequality in the world, and abuse at the hands of men just like himself, much less the serial perpetrators out there. While supporting her aspirations, he knew in his heart that even if his daughter became pro- his daughter would not have the opportunities he was shown as a male. He knows that as each daughter grows older, they'll find out about his transgressions as well. That's quite a price to pay in itself.
I've often wondered how my attackers coped over the years. They knew my family, so I had to come face to face with at least one of them for years after the incident. I was 12, they were 17-18. To my knowledge, none of them ever participated in another such event. The one most closely tied to my family went to college, married and had two daughters. Karma caught up to him. His girls were little when he took ill. He couldn't work, and his wife supported him until their daughters were grown and on their own. Then she left him to have a life for herself. How much of his illness was because he held in guilt and negative feelings? I know of many who claim that trauma or negativity has harmed their health. Of course I'll never know what was guilt, what was Karma. It's not my business to know. It's his Karmic debt not mine. I don't worry about other's debts-mortgages, car loans, etc. Karmic debt is no different. I'm not owed personally, it is the Universe/Karma that is owed. Whether the debt is repaid here on Earth or in the hereafter is not up to me, nor is it my cross to bear. Making it my worry only adds to my burdens unnecessarily. How someone treats you is their Karma. How you react is yours. I am actually friends with one of his grown daughters. No, I haven't told her. Never will. It's not about protecting him or avoiding the feelings roused by talking about the past. I simply do not want to be the kind of person who would put that kind of unnecessary burden on someone else. I don't want or need that kind of Karmic debt.
To err is human, to forgive Divine. This doesn't mean that you are spiritual or holy for forgiving. Forgiveness doesn't mean what was done was right or ok, or that we have to be friendly or in contact with those who have harmed us. It means we let go. Letting go means we control our lives instead of letting the past be in control-that is the divinity. How many people have we hurt because we were once hurt? How many have we not trusted? We are human, and made our own mistakes. We can't undo what we've done. None of us. Not all rapists are monsters. Some are people who made the mistake once, and like their victims, will carry the baggage of that mistake the rest of their lives.
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience. -Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
posted by Jeanne on 02-02-2020:
A message for this darkness, and the light that will arise, in the spirit of tonight's meditation. Like Baba's dream, we can face this dark situation with open eyes and see more clearly a beautiful outcome:
"We were made to understand it would be
Terrible. Every small want, every niggling urge,
Every hate swollen to a kind of epic wind.
Livid, the land, and ravaged, like a rageful
Dream. The worst in us having taken over
And broken the rest utterly down.
A long age
Passed. When at last we knew how little
Would survive us—how little we had mended
Or built that was not now lost—something
Large and old awoke. And then our singing
Brought on a different manner of weather.
Then animals long believed gone crept down
From trees. We took new stock of one another.
We wept to be reminded of such color."
-- An Old Story by Tracy K. Smith