Question: Do the recent happenings across the globe and in America, as well as the 2016 presidential campaign, leave you feeling troubled, with a sense of impending doom?
These days it’s as if we’re all in some sort of novella; something akin to Koontz or King that tells the tale of the world’s gradual, yet undeniable, unraveling. Mankind is the McGuffin, or rather a safe world that all mankind can reside harmoniously in, is the McGuffin. Our mutual survival is the endgame of the story being written right now.
We’re each of us part of his or her own multiple subplot or backstories in a horror novel, ready-equipped with demonic overtones if you happen to consider that recently in Pensacola, advocates of free speech allowed the opening prayer to a recent city council meeting be recited by a member of a satanic cult. Could this courting of the devil, under the guise of greater tolerance, portend the beginning of our inevitable downfall? Will such excursions into satanic worship continue and blossom? Does it mean anything that it happened in Florida? Remember Florida’s where it all began anew, where the whole black vs. white thing intensified for a new millennium, with the killing of Trayvon Martin.
There’s religious extremism of all denominations pushing man against man all for the sake of misconstrued and self-serving doctrine. Whether it’s Islamic Terrorists, Christian Fundamentalists or Jewish Zealots, they’re all carved from the same stone of hatred and selfishness. They mean the collective world no good whatsoever and that’s usually the case in such written theater; global end spurred on by man’s hatred of his fellowman, all with a pious bent of course.
And we’ve also had our share of plagues: AIDS, Ebola, Mad Cow, Swine flu, influenzas of varying degrees of lethality and now Zika. Invasive species overrun us, striking at the heart of our delicate biodiversity. Like in the prose, the power that’s killing us is summoning up nature’s wrath to soften us up for what’s still to come.
But the scariest bit is the political unrest and how the threat of insurrection thrives with just the slightest provocation across the globe and not just in the third world anymore. Here at home, it’s an election year and candidate Donald Trump, a man with a more than fair shot at winning, slyly courts renegade factions like the white supremacist movement, never disavowing them totally even as the Nazi camp routinely throws praise his way. Rising out of that pesky eternal sea, his incoming foreign policy threatens to decimate the decades of effort America has extended in straddling the various fences of global diplomacy. Make America Great Again could become synonymous with abandoning your allies and ignoring the promises made to them across tables of peace.
At the same time, a neo-Nazi’s nocturnal emission is exploding all over the country. Their manifesto, the great race war between the mud people and white America is finally beginning. Even many police feel it’s open season on law enforcement as some African-American males have taken retaliatory steps against cops for their past shootings of unarmed black men. In books, such provocative actions would always be perpetrated by an agent of evil, a rogue, supremacist bent on helping along the conclusion of his brethren’s doctrine.
But as in any story of the type, there’s always a contingent of good to battle the forces of evil. We see it happening around the country. Take the first responder who recently cut the toenails of a homeless man. Is it any coincidence that in his picture, bending forward performing his ministrations, he evoked the visage of Christ washing the feet of the Apostles and others? Even in the scheme of Fate, does it mean anything that it should have such a biblical reference?
They say the devil resides at the crossroads. As America comes to her fork in the highway, I’m of a mind that it could very well be true, because he is busy EVERYWHERE. Don’t believe? Think about it the next time you blow up when someone cuts you off on the street. How many times have we mentally imbibed something eerily similar; the quasi-end coming amidst man’s self-destruction? The good news is that civilization, however daunted, almost always finds a way to carry on.
The problem is that all of it-Trump, cops, Zika, coups-is true and happening right now. We’re all going to have to live through it. It’s not the devil or aliens, it’s just us and I think that makes it even harder and scarier. Still, it’d make for a hell of a read.