I spoke to B. today, over in the US. Sounds tough.
We watch the stuff in the US unfold, from down here in our safe harbour.
She referenced the idea of a 2nd US Civil War. Makes sense. Gun Deaths per annum are pretty much the same casualty rate as the entire Vietnam war. Being the wrong type of person in the wrong part of town gets you statistically closer to being one of those casualties.
War ain't what it used to be. I, for one, would contend that WW3 started a while back. It's information warfare.
Who do you believe?
Down here in Aus, we do some things that we don't like to talk about so much - the offshore processing centres for boat arrivals to discourage economic migration. Turning a half-blind eye to the knowledge that we inflict suffering as a deterrent.
Not the first time we've done that sort of thing. Ask the Chinese descended Australians how much welcome they received in the 19th century. Or the Kanakas.
For that matter, and if we're gonna be picky, no one except the Marsupials were created here.
Everyone who's here, traveled here.
Some, 40,000 years or more ago; some, 230 years ago; some just landed.
Perhaps the indigenous population of 1788 might want to try their hand at Language Tests, Processing Centres and the rallying cry 'F-off we're full'.
With that in mind, as the inhabitant of a Glass House, I have put my rocks down. We own our own behaviours.
yet - and this is a biggie.
I vote my conscience.
As a band playing roots styles heavily skewed to 20th Century US music, we've long had the foreigners appreciation for the noble aspects of the American experiment.
200 years the shining city on the hill.
200 Years the marathon carrying news of Humankinds re-awakening to the tenets that are so clearly self evident that they formed the basis of the declaration to the world.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
On this US 4th (it's the 5th here guys) we send our solidarity to our mates in the states. We wait with you as you puzzle the designs of your own minds.
We'll still be here when you work it out, and to borrow further from the founding fathers - if a friend tell's thee a fault, imagine that he tells thee but the half. and if they're Australian, they get that your faults are as much you as your virtues.
I commend to you, our American friends, the words of Franklin.
Beware of the first Acts of Dishonesty: They present themselves to the Mind under specious Disguises, and plausible Reasons of Right and Equity: But being admitted, they open the Way for admitting others, that are but a little more dishonest, which are followed by others a little more knavish than they, till by Degrees, however slow, a Man becomes an habitual Sharper, and at length a consummate Rascal and Villain. Then farewel all Peace of Mind, and inward Satisfaction; all Esteem, Confidence, and Reputation among Mankind. And indeed if outward Reputation could be preserved, what Pleasure can it afford to a Man that must inwardly despise himself, whose own Baseness will, in Spite of his Endeavours to forget it, be ever presenting itself to his View. If you have a Sir-Reverence in your Breeches, what signifies it if you appear to Others neat and clean and genteel, when you knowand feel yourself to be b----t. I make no Apology for the Comparison, however coarse, since none can be too much so for a defiled and foul Conscience. But never flatter yourself with Concealment;’tis impossible to last long. One Man may be too cunning for another Man, but not for all Men:Some Body or other will smell you out, or some Accident will discover you; or who can be sure that he shall never be heard to talk in his Sleep, or be delirious in a Fever, when the working Mind usually throws out Hints of what has inwardly affected it? Of this there have been many Instances; some of which are within the Compass of your own Knowledge.
Whether you chuse to act in a public or a private Station, if you would maintain the personal Character of a Man of Sincerity, Integrity and Virtue, there is a Necessity of becoming really good, if you would do good: For the thin Disguises of pretended private Virtue and Public Spirit, are easily seen through; the Hypocrite detected and exposed. For this Reason then, My dear Isaac, as well as for many others, be sincere, candid, honest, well-meaning, and upright, in all you do and say; be really good, if you would appear so: Your Life then shall give Strength to your Counsels;and though you should be found but an indifferent Speaker or Writer, you shall not be without Praise for the Benevolence of your Intention.