Monday, November 7, 2011

progress progress pleasant myth

One of the great perks of academic peonage is the ability to take free classes and keep the brain from atrophying, though what good it does for my cortices might be cancelled out by the blood pressure, released only by doing my best to not laugh or start talking too much.

I love that we have these discussions and I'm sure people wonder what planet I'm from too with some of the things I think and say but sometimes these perspectives are either so bizarre I can't even parse them out or they're so caricatureistic that I just kind of shake my head and wait until the end of class to vent with Randal about the Ayn Rand acolyte, the Che-obsessed undergrad who can't believe that Stalin would ever do anything bad, the older gentleman who still believes in some archaic concept of law and order and neoconnery, the other who believes that the world is getting better and someday we'll all hold hands and kumbayah and brings EVERYTHING back to the KKK.

As a country, yes, we're not as institutionally racist and that's a really good thing, but is it any better in the rest of the world? Sub-Saharan Africans in post-Gaddafi Libya are getting massacred, the Bhutanese who say they're the happiest country in the world are uprooting their Nepali kindred, the Bantu Somali were enslaved by the ethnic Somali up through the 1930s and still endure discrimination there, and when they immigrate elsewhere.

You really think it's better? Same shit, different place no matter what book you read or statistics you throw my way. How do you live this long and travel the world and be so educated and yet be so constrained by the narrowness of your personal experience? I just don't understand.

And I speak up and say we've all got dirty hands here, that all this talk of rights and universalities is semantics, and that no one treats everyone justly.

Classroom lessons World War Two
Atrocities against the Jews
Never again our solemn vow
That's why we all share Cambodia
Isn't it great how far we've come since then?

And I can't help but bow my head and cry
It took so long to finally realize
That all our hopes are based on such gross lies

Dialectic's shit
Evolution's crap
Time and time again the masquerade is
Shown for what it really is:
Progress, progress it's a pleasant myth
Progress, progress it's a pleasant myth

Progress, progress
Pleasant myth
That makes my life worthwhile


Randal Graves said...

Welcome to earth, space woman, klaatu barada nikto.

Assuming he's not bullshitting us (and to be fair, the dude's noodle is full of actual fact), it's disturbing how one can be so worldly in terms of actual places and cultures touched, yet simultaneously buying the crap American mythology and attendant extra-national blindness and what a convoluted paragraph, but dammit, some folks are plain nuts thus my typing English not good is.

thatgirl said...

Facts are useless if they don't lead to greater wisdom. I don't understand either (or rather I get what you're saying and I don't get him).

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Oh my goodness, did I stumble upon a dirty hippie blog?

Next thing you know, the peasants will voting (as well the usual, of course).