Skip to main content

I have the most extraordinary longing to say "Bloody Hell!"

Let it be said, by me, by all of us, that we will not sit silently by and watch our country be shredded by ignorance and cowardice, by hate and violence, by meanness and cruelty, or by discrimination, sexism, ageism, barbarity and intimidation.

The election of Donald Trump is not now an invitation for all of us to be punks and jackasses and beasts. For those who think they will have in the White House someone who will defend indecency, bigotry, and lawlessness, be warned: you will be confronted and opposed.

For those who think Trump as president is now your right to mock and piss on and shame, him and those who support him, get hold of yourselves. This is not a time for juvenile rants and petty retaliation.

Respect for the Office of President, reverence for the Constitutional framework of our government, must be honored. If we play this game of seeing who can beat up the other, whether in words, photos, memes, or actual deeds of violence and cruelty, then we do not have a country any longer. All we have is a wasteland of indifference and hate.

This is America, and though our history records times of human blight and the debris of our stubborn selfishness and the fears that turned us against one another, it also records periods of unity, of compassion, of high achievement when we worked together to build our nation into a paradise of invention, brilliance, freedom and hope.

Over the decades, people all across the world have not come here to be oppressed or scorned or fought. They came here to escape torture and evil, to create a new life, to raise their children in an environment of justice and safety, in a society of acceptance, welcome and promise. We have been that for them, time and time again. Of course there have always been the detractors, the ignorant, those who thought they owned the country because of their color or their status or their religion. They were wrong. They are wrong. They will always be wrong. And we must keep reminding them that they are. Not by bullying and tit for tat and outright chaos and riot. But by living strong lives of decency, fairness, equality and yes, love.

19th Century playwright and poet, Henrik Ibsen, has his famous character Nora Helmer say in a moment of intense frustration, “I have the most extraordinary longing to say ‘Bloody Hell!’”

I do, too, as I see what is happening to our country. What are we doing? It is time to stop this incessant fighting and scolding and evening the score and getting an eye for an eye.

Ibsen also wrote, “Those who possess liberty other than as an aspiration, possess it as soulless and dead.”

What do we truly aspire to be as a nation? Once we answer that truthfully, intelligently, decently, with heartfelt sincerity, we can then get on with being America.

It’s time.

© 2016 Timothy Moody

Popular posts from this blog

The Light in the Faces of Our Incredible Human Family

National Geographic Journalist Paul Salopek is walking across the world on foot to trace the pathways of the first humans who wandered out of Africa in the Stone Age to claim the earth as theirs. His journey will cover 21,000 miles and is estimated to take 10 years. He is four years into his massive expedition and already he has discovered that humanity is mostly kind and generous, welcoming and caring, hard-working and disciplined.
I watched a brief piece about Salopek’s journey on the PBS News Hour this week. I have included a link below.
What is extraordinary about his adventure is his realization that in spite of all the wars and turmoil across the globe, he has learned that “The world is an incredibly hospitable place.” In following the ancient trade route called “The Silk Road,” Salopek has gotten to know a variety of people young and old. And though he has so far encountered a few dangerous situations where he had his water supply stolen, was once ambushed by raiders, and was sho…

Our National Lack of Self-esteem

There is a brokenness in our society, a pervasive moral collapse, a reckless disregard for community, neighborliness, courtesy, and compassion.
Our government leads by this example. Both parties are incompetent to guide us into a more responsible living, into a serviceable structure of humanity. Our leaders are dominated by greedy oligarchs who don’t just want more, they want everything, even if it costs our society its dignity, its soul, even its future.
What is on display here daily is a wretched lack of self-esteem. The loss now influences all of us. We’re all affected in ways that keep us shamed by our actions.
When we feel powerless, aimless, without any higher goals than the accumulation of things and the momentary thrill, we then mute our intelligence. We live by raw emotions—anger, appetite, urges. We don’t think, we don’t consider, we merely react. We push. We disregard. We threaten. We act out. And we fail.
Self-esteem is a learned process. It builds on genuine successes that ar…

Is the Soul Solid, like Iron?

Mary Oliver has a beautiful little poem in which she asks:

“Is the soul solid, like iron?
or is it tender and breakable, like
the wings of a moth in the beak of the owl?”

It is both.

The soul, we are told by philosophers, theologians, and mystics, is our essence, the permanence of our true self. It is that part of us that lives beyond death. Or so we are taught by religion. Where exactly the soul exists beyond that, has of course, been long debated.

There are times in life when something deep within us is, as Mary Oliver says, solid as iron and we operate out of some sense of aliveness, confidence, and inner strength. It may be fleeting, but there when needed; or it may carry us through long periods of endurance when we build a sturdy self, confident and capable of our abilities and talents.

This is the work of the soul. This is a part of our spiritual development. This is what enables us to believe there are forces in life, loving and generous and mystical, that nurture and compel us tow…