'America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.'
It has been a struggle the last couple of years to return to the hope and the spirit I once had when writing about The 4th of July. All countries have their struggles, but the words, the songs, the sayings that define America seem distant. The current occupant of the White House resides with hate and unnecessary cruelness and phrases like 'Land of the Free' seem intended only for the wealthy, the privileged, the white. The rights of everyone but rich white men seem disposable, and the chaos, almost impossible to ignore.
It is almost impossible to fathom families in trauma, being re-traumatized when fighting for a new life, a new start. We're told a small percentage are 'evil', in order to justify the harming of many. If a small percentage of 'bad' eggs meant the destruction of any group, no group would survive, especially wealthy white men, who have ultimately been responsible for more harm, more cruelty, more death, than any other group on this continent.
Yet those sayings, those songs and those words are more important than ever. They can ground and re-energize a weary soul. The resistance is haphazard, messy and confused, but their passion, their resilience, there ability to organize is powerful and regardless of what happens this year or next, will ultimately overcome and prevail. It is inevitable. The current administration is doing damage, but it reminds me of the damage the of a movie horror killer. You know the drill, the masked killer is killed, so everyone thought, but they always rise briefly to make one last attempt to cause damage. The last 30 years have moved the country, the world, to a more accepting and equal place. This last gasp is painful, but a last gasp it is.
When the killer's mask is removed, it will reveal an impotent being, one whose power was only an illusion our fear allowed them to take We are not going back, we are not returning to inequities, racist policies, to abuse, to closets nor coat hangers. Going backwards is not an option, and attempts to drag us back there, although frustrating, are ultimately futile. The history books are going to have a field day with this time period, but the outcome is not in doubt.
Thanks to Jim from Studio1x for his incredible imagery, and the magnificentSamajay for the powerful visuals to embody both the illusion, and the hope, of this Independence Day. If you want to see a few more images from this series, check out THE OVER-FLOW HERE: