Against 'Make America Great Again'

Where did it all go wrong?

Today America is divided, more than I have ever known it to be. Algorithmically reinforced bubbles of thought have desynchronized our descriptions of reality, so that to our fellow citizens, our words sound like gibberish. Excommunication, until recently derided as one of the worst dehumanizing features of religion, has become apparently fashionable again, and has brought along a harsh sentence for sense-making, a penalty for acts of cognitive empathy and reconciliation.

Why did it all go wrong?

For decades, problems have mounted against us, challenges to the fundamental makeup of our society, and have gone unanswered. The Information Age has fused with Capitalism into a sisyphean game, a winner-takes-all rat race of popularity, where there are hundreds of losers for every winner, hundreds of shattered dreams for each ray of hope.

And when the system itself faltered, we found our representatives funneling funds meant for our welfare towards corporations—as if they too were human and not mere legal fictions. The rich get richer, and there is no hope on the horizon for the downtrodden.

When did it all go wrong?

Were there brighter days behind us? Have we committed some grave sin, for which our current circumstance is penance? Was there some secret, some magic which we once knew, but have now lost, which could solve all these problems?

We see anger and hate rising around us, where once there was peace. Could it be so wrong to wish for a time before the hate?

What went wrong?

Ah, but what drives the hate? It is our very past which is hateful to so many. There are times we must regret, there were injustices before our standards rose.

Our newborn nation aimed to be a nation for all, and failed, and tried again. The aristocracy of Europe we had meant to leave behind, so that each generation might have its own chance, its own fair shot to forge an American Dream. For that Liberty, for the freedom to pursue whatever called out to our souls, our founders risked everything.

When did we start clinging so hard to all they were willing to sacrifice?

Who wrought this wrong?

You glorified the past, you held that which you were meant to shed. The fruits of fathers cannot be preserved from generation to generation—that will only lead to rot. Each generation must plant their own seeds, must grow anew, and must earn their own way.

We are, at our best, a nation of new beginnings. Time flows only forward, and cannot be held in place, and cannot be grasped once it has passed. The past is something to learn from, not something to yearn for.

If you wish for a prosperity which has proven to be fleeting, would you leave behind the same hollow prize which was left to you? Is it not rather worth the cost to forge together a new union, new seeds for those after us to grow?

One day they too will fail. There is no immortality in this project. But let them fail forward, leaving better seeds, to be planted, to be grown, and to be cut down, in their own time.