10.23.2008

If I'm Honest

It’s finally grey enough for me to write. Yesterday and the day before it the Sun was too brilliant, the sky too blue, the leaves too on fire with the hues of fall for me to sanely consider holing up with my thoughts.

I returned from Canada to find a full mailbox: junk, voting pamphlet, voting ballet, voters registration card, and a copy of the Sun. It appears as thought my voting registration went through, as did my subscription change of address request. This was a bad time for election decisions, but a great time for the Sun.

Can we delay this election? Can we push it back until politicians are honest, until your average citizen actually believes that what they have to say is being heard (and maybe even acted upon)? Can we call a temporary halt to the onward march of this crazed civilization? Is it too much to ask for a week or two of national meditation and reflection on where we’ve been, where we are and where we are going?

A flash of emotions rushes through me when looking at the ballot. I want to do one of many things to it: fill it out and send it in, spit on it, set it on fire and light a cigarette from the burning embers or simply resign it to the recycle bin with the rest of the scrap paper that blows through my life.

I'm struggling with thoughts of my great grandfather. Tell me again why he left Ireland for America. I don’t see what he saw in this country. I don’t know that I ever will.

My thoughts straddle the border. Do I immigrate north and leave this despotic government to it’s own devices? How bad did it have to get before my Irish ancestors boarded the ship and set sail for the new world, how bad will it get before I do the same?

Here is an excerpt from Sy Safransky’s Notebook. It’s words like these that keep me sane.

“No matter who’s elected president, daffodils will bloom in the spring. Men and women will fall in love and, sadly, out of love. Inconsolable grief will still be inconsolable. A broken heart will nonetheless keep beating one hundred times a day. No matter who’s elected president, writers will write. Painters will paint. Three in the morning will still be three in the morning. The door in our psyche we don’t want to walk through will still be just down the hall. No matter who’s elected president, life will hand us the invisible thread that connects us all; love will hand us the needle.”

7 Comments:

OpenID reapingtruth said...

Hey Bro,

Reading your post makes me want to cabin'chill. to bad it so expensive to fly across our country. maybe we can meet somewhere in-between? just thinking.

love,
Michael

4:15 PM  
OpenID silver22bsti said...

Cabin'Chill 2008?

Count me in.

4:37 PM  
Blogger kelsey lee said...

wow. i love that passage. it brought tears to my eyes in fact.

8:37 PM  
Blogger michael said...

I want in on cabin chill!
response: lets not forget that we can always run away from problems. How can we as tribe leaders fix them. That might take a handful of us learning and working up the system to topple it? maybe? I don't think I am that smart. I'll stick with NOLA

8:06 PM  
Blogger Amy G said...

I really like that quote you posted. I wish more people would think like that. Yes, the president is important, but also, life goes on!

As far as what your grandfather saw in the US? I'm not positive right now, as it's a country that has literally chewed my family up and spit us out. After a year (short by most standards) and thousands of dollars spent on the immigration process, my husband is banned from the US for life for something that his mother did with his documents as a kid. Now I'm apparently supposed to move to Mexico with a newborn, to a country where the current rate of kidnappings beats Iraq and drug cartel gunfire has killed 21 people in 24 days.

I think that's where I begin to see the value of the US. For all its faults, it's a country where police still generally seek criminals rather than bribe money. It's a country where the government isn't doing enough, but at least a poverty-stricken pregnant woman is able to get free public health care to take care of herself and her baby. It's a country where seeing patrols of armed forces in the streets and at mall entrances is NOT the norm (yet or hopefully ever). It's a country where a minimum-wage job pays better than an entry-level "professional" job in many other countries, cost of living accounted-for. It's a country where people can protest their job conditions or fight for better ones without being instantly fired. It's a country where you can still see the generosity of citizens every now and then, where there is a sense that things will eventually be OK.

In our case, immigrating to Canada has become more of a necessity than a dream, and we pray more than ever that Canada will give us a chance. But as awesome as it would be to become landed immigrants in Canada someday, we don't deny that the US would have been a perfectly good place to accomplish our dreams and raise our baby, as much as we doubted that before.

It sure isn't perfect as a country, but there are people and communities in the US that have caused me to realize that at least there's still hope!

9:29 PM  
Blogger Corey said...

Yes, Cabin Chill '08 is most definitely in order.

Amy G,

Welcome to the blog. If you dont mind me asking, how did you find your way to my blog? Thanks for sharing your story.

I'm sorry to hear that you have been forcefully separated by the unreasonable and inhumane immigration laws of a fearful and war mongering government such as is the one in the U.S.

It's always interesting to me that the same people who create laws to make American immigration damn near impossible are probably only a generation or two removed immigrants themselves. They're nothing but a bunch of xenophobic hypocrites.

In reference to your comment about the minimum wage being higher than in many countries i would have to ask whether or not that minimum wage is also a living wage. Can you actually "make a living" (or even "get by") on the minimum wage offered in America? The answer is a resounding no. And this from the monetarily richest country in the world. Now that's disgusting.

I expect more from this country and rightfully so.

NOLA Mike,

hey man, really good too hear from you. I understand what you are saying about the running away part. There is a part of me that wants to stay in this country and fight for making it a better place for all of us to live in. At this point in my life i am just really burnt out and tired. The prospect of staying in the states for an indefinite period is an overwhelming thought.

My concern is that this country will slide toward some kind of massive police/prison state (it's already headed that way, just ask any of the more than 2 million citizens currently imprisoned) which controls and watches the movements of the people who live within it's confines.

Governments tend to want more and more power (kind of like corporations want more and more money) and they have a hard time giving it up once they've had a taste of it.

There is something deep within me that cannot and will not accept living beneath a system that attempts to revoke "certain inaliable rights" from me.

But i'm glad you're in NOLA and staying there, it sounds like that's where your heart is at and that's what is most important.

11:23 PM  
OpenID silver22bsti said...

May G, thank you for your perspective.

10:56 AM  

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