Dismayed: A Letter to Howard Zinn: Hi Professor Zinn. Whenever I feel sad or down regarding the political trajectory of the country I go onto Utube and listen to one of your lectures which I did entitled "The Holy Wars." I loved that. Tonight we rented a film about Woodstock which, of course, catapulted me back to those late 1960's years that I loved so much. I love reliving those days when I thought all change was possible and continue to shake my head and wonder what happened. I thought, too, how just a year ago I was SO hopeful with the Obama presidency only to have those hopes dashed one by one as his policies reflected little and sometimes no change at all. So now we come to the Coakley race and believe me it's not that I love Coakley so much but it is the unbelievable boomerang that is the nature of the American public. Upset with the power that is go to the Democratic corner. Upset with that go to the Republican corner. It reminds me of a bouncing ball bouncing from one side to the other not knowing where to land and so it bounces in perpetuity never to find a safe place to rest.
I see something not so nice within the heart of this country. There is a nastiness, an anger and an almost fascistic quality to a large part of the electorate. I know that in the history of this country there have been times when the good shows through and major change occurs. Sometimes though that change takes centuries. Often those who fought the hardest for rights never make it to see those rights won. Yes, the Coakley race has taken its toll on me NOT because I love her so much at all but because of a HUGE disappointment in a president for whom I held out such ebullient hope just a year ago. Does the public especially in Massachusetts REALLY think Scott Brown or those other Republicans like him will be the key to extracting them from their malaise? It's like putting the same germ in your body to rid you of the illness. Can people be so incredibly stupid? I suspect they can and THAT is the etiology of my sadness.
Yes, we can continue to fight an uphill battle but now I am 61 years old and I have hoped since those wonderful days when all hope seemed possible that WE would create the better world. I know you say leaders cannot be counted on to do anything and that change must come from the people but when the people themselves disappoint one so, where is there to turn? If I were a religious person I would turn to god but I'm not a religious person. So I still do not see except when I hear you speak that the nature of this land can be molded for the better. I think it has a crudity, ignorance and an angry white racist strain running all the way through it -- north and south, east and west. So where do I look to recoup what I thought I had so many years ago -- hope?
What a disappointment -- a HUGE disappointment Obama has been. I think his use of his vast power has been dismal and he is not the man I thought he was. I think when he invited Rick Warren to his inauguration I SHOULD have seen the handwriting on the wall. How can one analyze him without thinking he lied. All his beautiful words were simply words and meant nothing. This loss will be STINGING and I can hear the Republicans crowing for days. It makes me sick. So back to Republican rule yet again. When will it end? I truly fear for the structure of the nation. It is split right down the middle. Pat Buchanan said that this is a "center right" country." If so how that change will come from the bottom up I have no idea. I simply do not see the good in man at all. I say Hobbs was right. Life is nasty, brutish and oh so very short and that is true in this country and is true nearly everywhere else.