By David Glenn Cox
A recent Newsweek article says, “Most Americans say this the lowest point in U.S. History in Living Memory” I almost hate to say this but stick around they’ll be a floor show later. But history is like weather cycles too long and protracted to gain much personal experience. I was sitting in class once in the third grade. The principal came to the door and motioned the teacher out into the hall. She returned and said the students who rode their bikes or walked to school were to go home immediately. The students who rode the bus were to go to the lunchroom. I couldn’t believe it. It was like a fire drill except when we got outside, we could go, no questions asked.
I rode my bike home leisurely like eight-year olds do on a beautiful sunny Dallas day. When I came in the back door, I could tell my mother had been crying and she told me about the President being shot downtown. For a child it was devastating touched by murder but then watching the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald on live TV. My parents were having coffee, and I ran to tell them what I had witnessed.
“No, I think you heard that wrong. That couldn’t happen.”
It was another minute or two before I could get them to believe me and come to the TV. It was a low point for America a coup de tat by person or persons unknown. The chief suspect murdered while in police custody stinking to high heaven. It was a low and troubling time in America who did this and why? No faith in elected officials or the system which puts them in power they chose election by bullet. As soon as the area was opened, my father loaded us all in his big Chrysler and took us to see the Texas schoolbook depository. The narrative at that time was that Oswald had escaped out the back door. So, my father wheeled the Chrysler round back so we could see this famous door. As it turns out it was just an ordinary door that Oswald didn’t actually escape through.
Selma to Montgomery, Birmingham, Bull Conner, church bombings, Viola Liuzzo. Freedom Riders attacked and beaten at the bus station while police stand idly by. Malcolm X murdered, Martin Luther King, Medgar Evers, Emmett Till all murdered. George Wallace, Lester Maddox and the Vietnam War, Richard Nixon and Ronald-Fucking-Reagan. Stick around the Party is just getting started. In 1968 the consensus said that there was no way in hell Ronald Ray Guns could ever be elected President. I mean, what sort of stupid moronic country would elect a has been ham actor to be the President of the United States?
There were points of light, but they were mainly murdered in the kitchen of a Los Angeles hotel. Murder was the theme for the costume Party and the message was clear. Make too much noise and you could have a real bad accident. Now, go put on this green suit we have some yellow people we want you to kill. Your service in Vietnam was dependent on your ability to get into college shifting the question of service from patriotic to economic. The crime of officials knowing the war was unwinnable in 1968 but continuing on just the same. Like our private prisons of today as grist mills just grinding through money and lives. Factories build tanks and planes while poverty builds the infantry.
The resignation of Richard Nixon was bittersweet. It wasn’t just Nixon; Vice President Agnew had resigned pleading no contest to a criminal charges and Gerald Ford was elected vice-president by one vote. Richard Nixon’s vote. The nice thing about picking your successor is its like choosing which cop you’re gonna try and out run. The Hudsucker Proxy, not too bright is just right. Someone you can count on to have an attack of conscience with desire to end our long national nightmare. Another shining moment in American history.
War Crimes! War Crimes! War Crimes! Nixon bombing dams in North Vietnam to bombing water treatment facilities in Iraq. Assassinations and missile strikes on school buses. Depleted uranium spreads democracy and birth defects! We entered Afghanistan under the same premise Austria presented Serbia in WW1. We’re coming in and have this piece of parchment with a little red ribbon on it and a wax seal that says this is all legal. We entered Iraq under the same premise Adolf Hitler invaded Poland in 1939. Iraq was in possession of one the world’s largest collection of obsolete and unserviceable military aircraft. After eight years of war with Iran she was militarily exhausted and ripe for the picking. So, pick we did and if a million Iraqi’s died to make that happen it’s a good thing American public opinion is only measured week to week.
So how do the detention cells in Guantanamo line up with detention cells for border crossers? Is this a new atrocity or a continuation of the old one? Have we gotten worse as a society or are we just noticing more? We do owe Donald Trump a sincere debt of gratitude for he has brought us together. Millions of American’s have joined hands together and said, “Oh My Fucking God! Donald Trump is the President!” Donald Trump for his part has exceeded all expectations and premonitions of dire events.
Trump’s subtle and overt racism have made our better angels come to the fore. I get angry when the media refer to the “killing” of George Floyd. You kill a cow or a chicken, but you murder a man. America witnessed that murder and for just a moment it saw itself as it really is. The scenery has fallen we are not worse than we used to be. We are the same as we used to be and there is your problem. This is not the lowest point in U.S. history this is the lowest point in U.S. history…so far.