How did the John Birch Society take over America for at least 8 years?
When did the Republican Party take over where the KKK left off?
But all the elements are there: the deletions of ghettoized voters, the intimidation at the polls, the dedication
to the 2nd amendment and contempt for habeas corpus, free speech and privacy, the belief in violence as redemption,
blood sacrifice as political fact, in short good old right wing terrorism, authoritarian belief, everything is privilege
they have you don’t, you get arrested for the wrong t-shirt, they show up at the event with assault rifles and sidearms
And I see Mississippi Burning and I remember when I was in high school about those three young men
not much older than I was then, really just boys, the F.B.I. agents found under a clay dam, and the local deputies
who took them out and beat and shot them to death and buried them sure it would be just like all the other times
they killed and didn’t even bother to dispose of the bodies except eventually the bodies always rise to the surface
and the whole U.S. elite is like that small town down in Mississippi really only a population of a few thousand
and they all cover up in plain sight trying to pretend what happened didn’t really happen but we’re still stuck
in the quagmires and the bodies keep popping up all around them as Iraq and Afghanistan blow away in dust storms
And then while I’m babysitting my 3 and one half year old and 4 month old grandsons, my daughter-in-law and
her friend Jen inform me that for 14 years starting in 1990 Jennifer was the number one name for new little girl babies
because apparently of the novel then movie Love Story whose female lead was named Jennifer the character I
associated way back then in the 70’s with suffocating sentimentality, claustrophobic tear jerking, the character who
said “love is never having to say you’re sorry” when love I knew is going around grateful she even allows you to live
and she calls him “Preppie” and I think about two decades of preppie presidents and here the rest of us are in the
mess they presided over while the banksters in the form of Goldman Sachs still got everybody’s balls in a vice after
everything that happened on Wall Street in 2007-08.
James Van Looy has been a fixture in Boston’s poetry venues since the 1970s. He is a member of Cosmic Spelunker Theater and has run poetry workshops for Boston area homeless people at Pine Street Inn and St. Francis House since 1992. His work appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.