Saturday, December 3, 2016

"A Place Where There is No Darkness"

"We shall meet in a place where there is no darkness," is a quote from George Orwell's futuristic novel, "1984." Besides being a warning never to name a book after a year, it was a vision of a dystopia not totally unlike what we may be seeing today. "Freedom is slavery," "Ignorance is strength," seem Trumpian now. The place where there is no darkness, which all believe in a state beyond state repression, turns out to be a prison cell where the lights are never turned off.

Maybe I am being alarmist but it's better than passivity. I am inclined toward worse case scenarios perhaps because I'm a Jew. The fact that some Jews still exist is partially attributable to Darwinism.  We are descended from folks who, for whatever reason, foresight, or twist of fate got out before it was too late.

I have been running around to planning and brainstorming meetings of all stripes trying to find a place work from when the attacks start coming and, unless we can overturn this election, they will. Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare may be first on the chopping block if Tom Price is confirmed as head of Health and Human Services.

Many Trump voters, including Sarah, Russia from my backyard, Palin, are already regretting their presidential choice. Yes, we are a divided nation. Racial and gender identity politics without class analysis are a dead end but so are class politics that don't include an analysis of other types of oppression that compound socioeconomic struggle.

In 1993 I was a librarian at the San Francisco Chronicle when we all went on strike. There were Teamsters from the printing plant, reporters from the Newspaper Guild and some AFL-CIO members as well. We were picketing at a printing plant in Richmond when some of the Teamster guys started calling some outside strike-breakers crossing the picket line, "faggots." Later at a meeting we explained to them how, because many of us were gay (that was the word then before all the initials), that divides us. They got it.

Maybe the rural heartland Trumpers can get it too. Maybe not. We don't need to wait for realization to dawn. We need to organize and come together with whoever wants to fight back. Time to put up hurricane shutters and brace ourselves for the coming storm.