Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Will my country now be mine? Ours?

...truth be told, it's beautiful outside, I'm feeling good, I listened to reggae on the drive in, and I tried not too feel too smug or overconfident. I do, after all, live in crAZy. I stayed up too late to watch returns, completely ready to feel that sinking failure again, certain robberies were going to happen, certain some pendejo was going to shoot someone at a polling place...

But nothing happened.

And, something happened.

What we, who have become so tired and frustrated and angry with the lies, deceit, arrogance, fear-mongering, and anti-American, anti-Constitution, hell, anti-human dignity wave of political endeavor will do with a putative victory by slightly less arrogant bastards (but god of your choice bless Nancy Pelosi!) is a good question. I'm not a libertarian or a some goofball Ayn Rand type, but I am really concerned that in a wave of giddiness we forget to take control. In the same way I want Latina/os, Chicana/os, Mexicana/os, and brown peeps of all kinds to get up stand up, I am fully aware many of us have been so tired just trying to keep our heads above the water of agressive arrogance. I truly want us to be able to take a few collective breaths as a nation, then remember not to giggle too much in public.

However, I am greatly pleased that Arizona, of all places, voted down the marriage amendment. I hope that means we're interested in NOT letting government rule every aspect of our lives. The anti-immigrant and English only BS is just that, though I deeply worry, given a penchant nationally in some spheres for illegal detention, that the bail amendment will impact quickly.

What the anti-immigrant things mean to me is that though I have no accent, have a PhD, and can throw a perfect spiral, I still might be a target for some wackos like Warden or Felony Dove because I'm brown. My white husband probably wouldn't make much difference to them-- he'd be a race traitor. Even though he's Bohemian and Irish...

Johnny Clegg, a white singer from South Africa who plays with a black and white SA band and was harassed for doing so before the dismantling, wrote this song about his country during Apartheid, and when I was listening to it recently I thought-- one day my country will be mine... but, right now I don't know if I'm the witness or the crime.

And I am DEAD tired of you who who cause friction in the land.


Woman Be My Country

Here we stand on the edge of the day
Faces melting in the African rain
So many seasons of silent war
So many drowned before they reached the shore
Nothing is clear to me any more in this sad and strange landscape
I've got no defense, I've got no attack
I can't leave, I can't stay and I've got no way back
Hard to deal with the way things have been
I can't lie but the truth is so extreme

Woman be my country, 'till my country can be mine
Hide me deep inside your borders in these dark and troubled times
Remember me my innocence before I drowned in the sea of lies
Woman be my country, 'till my country can be mine

Too many seasons of quiet rage
Too many young people just wasted away
Too many futures hanging in the balance
Too much owing nothing left to pay
A lonely flag flutters in the breeze
for the hardened hearts who still want to believe
Am I the witness or am I the crime
A victim of history or just a sign of the times
Across my heart questions and shadows still fly
But in the dead of the night I know where the answer lies

Woman be my country, 'till my country can be mine
I have no flag, I sing no anthem, I no longer carry an armalite
Bathe me in you sweet rivers, anoint me with your touch and your smile
To your colours I give my allegiance, I lay it on the line

Ngikhathele ngifile wena weqat' izwe
(I am dead tired of you who cause friction in the land)
Ngikhathele ngifile zindaba zakho
(I am dead tired of you, and your matters)
Yash' imizi yobada
(The homes of my fathers are burning)

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