This past week has, for lack of a better word, been heavy. Two more mass shootings happened less than 24 hours apart last weekend, that has left 31 people dead and many other people injured. Right after that, Toni Morrison passed away. It’s hard to write about anything else when once again, the people who’re supposedly our leaders refuse to listen to logic, and the words of Morrison remain as profoundly relevant than when she first wrote them.
That is why today will be devoted to Recommended Analyzing. Today’s piece is an essay penned by Morrison herself called “Making America White Again.” Published back in 2016 in The New Yorker less than a week after the presidential election, she gets to the core of the danger of Trump being elected to power and the motive behind the actions of those who act in favor of him; it’s all about the fear felt over America looking less white, less male, and less white male. She goes into spot-on detail on how willingly people are able to go to feel less like a shrinking privileged demographic, no matter how cowardice their actions are. In the case of the cause that led to the creation of this essay, there are people in this country who are so insecure, they were even willing to vote a dangerous demagogue like Trump into office.
Now the interesting thing is that these acts of cowardice have been going on long before the election, as Morrison highlighted with mentions of the Charleston church shooting and Black men being beaten and/or killed by white cops for ultimately no reason. But the scary part about this essay is that it also captured exactly what would become even more blatantly obvious once Trump actually took office. Since the creation and publication of this essay, more mass shootings have happened (particularly targeted at specific communities and unsurprisingly conducted by white supremacists), children are being torn apart from their parents (or, in the case of this week, finding out their parents were arrested by ICE agents), and attacks on race, gender, and sexuality – both verbal and physical – seemed to occur much more frequently. It saddens me that Morrison passed at a time when the country and the world are at a brink of self destruction.
Now I don’t mean to sound cynical, but if you’ve been following my writing on here long enough, then you know damn well where I stand on all this, and it should be no surprise then why I selected this essay from her as a recommendation for you all. Go read Morrison’s essay over on The New Yorker right now, and then really think about what she wrote. If there’s any chance of making a change, we can’t just wait the remaining 15 months until the next election. We need to start acting now.
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