Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Make America Better Than This

If you saw the picture, then you probably had a reaction. The picture was of a teenage boy standing directly in front of a Native American man who was drumming and singing. The issue for me and seemingly most of the rest of the planet was the look of amused contempt on the boy's face. If you missed it, take a moment to drink it in.
If your reaction caused you to spit or spill anything on your computer, I apologize, and I will give you another moment to wipe up.
The kid in the picture was by no means  alone. He was the focal point of a truly ugly scene in front of the Lincoln Memorial at the end of marches that ended there: one "for Life," and the other for indigenous people. I assume that the young men  in their Make America Great Again hats were there for the March for Life. One might wonder what a gaggle of teenage boys would have to say or wonder about reproductive rights. One might also wonder what that same group would have to say about indigenous people. Especially since the photographed and videotaped reaction to their point person was that smirk.
By now, you may be familiar with Nathan Phillips' resume. Nathan, a Vietnam vet and activist was the sixty-four year old being accosted by that smirk and the attendant rowdy Catholic schoolboys bused in for the Pro-Life march. The life of this elder of Omaha nation excepted. His answer to the youth's chants of "Build The Wall," which were a little incongruous at both a pro-life and an indigenous people's march, was to suggest that this was not their land to wall off. Native Americans weren't much in the way of wall builders. That was more of an imported European notion. One of smirk-boy's buddies announced, "y'all stole it from the Aboriginals…it's been stolen throughout all of history…land gets stolen…it's how it works…it's the way of the world." Suggesting that aside from busing their best and brightest to the March For Life, the History Department of Covington Catholic High School could do their job a little better. 
Or perhaps we could all do our job a little better. America really should be better than this. 

No comments: