Friday, July 08, 2016
What rough beast . . . slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?
I'm kind of an old guy now, and I lived through the '60s -- the Civil Rights Movement and massive police and KKK violence in response, the Vietnam War protests and the Chicago convention, the assassinations, the urban riots, the Weather Underground, the Black Panthers . . .
It seemed as though everything was spinning out of control. People got scared enough to nominate Barry Goldwater, and then elect Richard Nixon, but eventually everything calmed down and the country held together. The truth is though, the underlying fractures in our society didn't heal, they just got painted over for a while. Is this historical moment more dangerous, or do we have more cultural resources now to overcome the turmoil and fear?
I'm not sure yet. Has progress been an illusion, or are we just seeing the one step back after two steps forward? We'll just have to stay tuned.