When I learned that the Rolling Stones big hit “Mother’s Little Helper” was about Valium “though she’s not really ill, there’s a little yellow pill” and it was the most widely prescribed drug in the 1950’s, I nodded with understanding. Almost jealous that doctors are not doing that now. So many smart women forced into subservient stultifying roles – those were NOT the good old days. On social media, I see photos of the women standing behind the Mango Mussolini and say “The town of Stepford called, they want their Robo Wives back” and I get likes and hahas. But seriously, they scare me.
Scary smart chicks should not be expected to face life sober. The hostilities take many forms. Derision, shouting, storming out, questioning, always questioning, our conclusions. Libtard, Snowflake, Pollyanna – I am none of those things. Gas lighting is the new sexist art form. Fighting every single day to be heard, to have our advice heeded.
De-humanization on steroids, the last four years. So I speak. And I write checks to progressive candidates. And I write letters to my elected representatives. I ask my friends, “why do you think Fox Media and Sinclair Broadcasting keep handing you someone brown to hate?” I argue that no person is illegal. That we should be ashamed seeing asylum seekers arrested just for asking. There was never any caravan from South America. Cliven Bundy was no hero. Kyle Rittenhouse is just another in a long line of murderous angry white men, egged on to crazed attacks on an enemy manufactured by xenophobic propagandists. Clutching their un-read Bibles, they come wrapped in the flag, spewing hate. The Confederacy, founded on de-humanization, on the ugly belief in the superiority of the Caucasian race. And all too often, in the right of the Master to beat his wife, too.
And on January 6th, the violently misinformed beat a police officer to death with flag poles and fire extinguishers. Those are the faces of our abusers. Let us punish without mercy the ones who lied to them, and pointed them like bayonets at the Union
Catherine G. Tripp writes for grownups, for the curious, for those who appreciate wry humor. Her work has been published in Pilcrow and Dagger, Wingless Dreamer, Reedsy, and she has read her work for several Zoom shows in 2020, including the Mask Monologues, Coffee and Grief and Creative Caffeine. Her recent writings and blog posts have been insightful, fast-paced, evocative essays about current events, and thought-provoking memoirs about the tangled branches of her family tree.