Miscellaneous Mental Musings of an Emerging Artist
I wish I could say I was surprised that America has escalated to deploying tear gas and rubber bullets against toddlers.
But America is also a nation that has separated toddlers from their parents and then placed those toddlers in front of judges to answer for the crime of seeking asylum. America is a nation that refused to give many of these children back to their parents, sending them back to their countries of origin with no plans or organizational capacity for reunification, and sending others to be adopted as if their birth parents didn’t desperately want them back. America has already told children from Syria that they don’t care how many of their drowned corpses wash ashore.
America is a nation where an alarming number of children face hunger and malnutrition on a daily basis while 30-40% of the food supply goes to waste. America is a nation where children are routinely denied basic health care or life-saving procedures due to a lack of personal funds or the business goals of an insurance company. America is a nation where people are so willing to believe a discredited theory that vaccines cause autism that they’d rather see children afflicted with diseases that used to kill them by the hundreds.
America is a nation where bullets are fired either accidentally or on purpose into the bodies of children and our solution is to traumatize children further by running repeated simulations in which psychopathic intruders invade their schools to murder them. America is a nation where the parents of these victims can be told that their children never existed, that they were instead concocted by political operatives in order to undermine one’s perceived right to a personal weapons stockpile.
America is a nation where children can be murdered by police or self-proclaimed vigilantes and a significant segment of the media narrative will imply that the child deserved it.
America is a nation willing to relax regulations on industrial toxicity that harms children and a nation unwilling to act swiftly when the children of entire towns suffer from lead poisoning. America is a nation that considered the children of Puerto Rico a lower priority for disaster relief than multi-billionaires were for tax relief.
America is a nation where children are abused by their peers for having identities or orientations outside of an utterly arbitrary standard and attempts to curb such abuse are frowned upon by legislators who contend that the abuse is a necessary cornerstone of religious expression. America is a nation where children are either kicked out into the elements or beaten to death by their parents under suspicion of being the slightest bit queer.
America pretends to care about children before they are born or when they hear a naughty word in a pop song or when they see a same-sex couple kissing each other on television. America cares about children conceptually, in terms of how their suffering might affect their ability to wield power, infuence, or wealth. The list of things America actually cares about before it cares about the welfare of children is long and unsettling.
Shame on us for the line we have crossed today, but shame on us also for every step we took on the way to the line.