July 19, 2007 - Issue 238
Waving The Flag And Losing Their Minds
Keeping It Real
By Larry Pinkney
Perhaps the most insane aspect of America as a nation is its propensity for constant denial of the obvious. America has taken mythology and spun it into an unrivaled web of internal and external deception and hypocrisy resulting in unending and unparalleled bloodshed.
Thus, the President of the United States can, with a straight face, declare that America invaded and is occupying Iraq in order to bring about justice and democracy for the Iraqi people. Never mind that America does not practice or have justice or democracy for its own people, especially the majority of Black and other people of color.
The Vice President of the United States can, with a straight face, brazenly declare that his office is not a part of the executive branch of government and thus not be bound by the legalities prohibiting unlawful spying, etc., on US citizens. Never mind that common law and common sense alone dictate that such actions on the part of the Vice President and his office are ethically unacceptable.
US political candidates from both the Democratic and Republican parties, can with a straight face, declare to Americans and the rest of the world that it is time to take America back to its basics of justice, decency, and democracy. Never mind that the basics upon which America is built are in fact not justice, decency, and democracy, but hypocrisy, genocide, and slavery.
The above three examples are but a few, out of many, re a nation and a people whose common thread, more often than not, appears to be one of denial and concomitant insanity. It is a nation that repeatedly demonstrates its preference for mythology over facts, for embracing subterfuge and distortion over truth. As such it is a nation that is constantly at war and always manufacturing rationales thereto.
Thus, it should come as no surprise that even as America sinks deeper into the self-created bloody quagmire of Iraq, its President, Vice President, the entire US Senate, and a sizable portion of the US House of Representatives are selectively ignoring the lies which led to the American invasion and occupation of Iraq in the first place. Now these same elements are clamoring for war with Iran while blaming that nation for the deaths of US troops who were themselves taken into Iraq under the patent "weapons of mass destruction" lie. This insanity will stop only when the people of the United States bring it to an end. The politicians, be they Democrats or Republicans will never end this insanity as they and their corporate bosses are irretrievably intertwined in this symbiotic cycle of insanity.
There will be no real change in America unless its peoples bring about serious systemic change, and such change calls for forthrightly addressing the fundamental political, economic, and social contradictions of the United States. US politicians, including Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, are in fact beholden to the maintenance of this political, economic, and social system, not the scraping of it. For example, the fact that millions of Americans are without health coverage or adequate health care is not a coincidence. To believe otherwise is akin to believing in the tooth fairy. The fact that America incarcerates many millions more of its people (some of whom it executes) and most of whom are Black and other people of color is also no mere coincidence. These things are part and parcel of an insane American system dedicated to corporate profit for the few at the expense of the overwhelming majority of Americans and people throughout the world. This is nothing short of insanity. It is the kind of insanity that substantively ignores and exacerbates the horrors of global climate change at the expense of the entire planet, in the name of corporate profits and waving the flag. It is that uniquely insane American brand of denying the obvious.
Black Americans know that the US cannot offer that which it does not possess. It cannot offer sanity, justice, or democracy; for as the old African proverb correctly states, "Beware of the naked person who offers you clothes."
America's politicians who feed from the trough of its corporations have chosen time and again to wave the flag of corporate greed at the expense of humanity while waiving the human rights and aspirations of the majority of its own citizens and people around the world. Black America must resoundingly reject America's insanity, seeking and creating a different path while there is yet time. We must continue to collectively struggle, along side the vast majority of the human family, to hold tightly to our sanity and make our objectives a reality. We can do this. Indeed, there is no other acceptable option.
Larry Pinkney is a veteran of the Black Panther Party, the former
Minister of Interior of the Republic of New Africa, a former political
prisoner and the only American to have successfully self-authored
his civil/political rights case to the United Nations under the International
Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Click
here to contact Mr. Pinkney.