America, Where Are You Now?

It doesn’t say who bombed the shelter. Even if it did, it would only be more finger pointing instead of fact. Misinformation and disinformation are the norms, and the USA may well be the leader in that arena.

What we do know is that America provokes and escalates violence and instability throughout the world and therefore is no less culpable.

The video has enlivened in me an emotion lying just beneath a thinning surface: America, where are you now?

The violence that America perpetrates in the name of national security is an elaborate hoax. Wars are the lifeblood of its burgeoning political-corporate-military-industrial complex.

War, as with the oppression of animals, many livelihoods depend on. And thus America has become addicted. A junkie strung out and unreasoned, convinced that war and animal flesh are both good and needed.

This never-ending violence angers me to never-ending.

I joined the USAF near the end of the Vietnam war, a confused young man. I stayed state-side, and so I don’t associate as a Vietnam vet, per se. Nonetheless, the stigma remains. However, the point I’d like to make is this, my final disillusionment in the people of a country I believed at one time desired peace.

Foolishly, I thought peace was the goal. And, I believed it attainable.

I saw the mass demonstrations during the Vietnam war. Young people fled to Canada. People burned their draft cards. Students protested, and four were gunned down at Kent State. The Ohio National Guard willfully turned its guns on unarmed, nonthreatening young American citizens and opened fire, a tragedy now nearly forgotten, known as the May 4 Massacre.

Inside me, I knew that once this war was over America would never fight another. Its people had had enough of war. Enough of sending their sons and daughters off to die in foreign lands. Enough of executing its citizens on the home ground.

Likewise, I knew that when people saw the brutal reality of animal agriculture veganism would become a wave that swept the entire world in compassion.

Was I ever wrong?

War protests are now a blemish on American history.

Animal enslavement has reached epidemic proportions.

The peace and love movement had died a silent, lonely death. Its aging hippies now very much defending the status quo. Trading bell-bottoms and paisley print for suit and tie. Peace for war.

To speak out against war is unpatriotic. To express discontent, the act of a traitor.

War is what we are; it defines us. Violence is what we do, daily in our lives, to the people, to the animals. It is on our plates, literally; and from there its escalation has no end.

And peace? Well, that’s just a word, a concept I can no longer believe in.

Although my bell-bottoms and paisley prints live only in the faded snapshots of an era long ago, I never have nor will I ever own a suit and tie. These are the garments worn by the representatives of Authority. They serve as a constant reminder of oppression and war.

As I write this, as relevant then as now, Steppenwolf’s, Monster, plays in the background and asks, “America, where are you now…Don’t you know we need you? We can’t fight alone against the monster.”

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Author: Peter Schreiner

Ethical Vegan, Idealistic Anarchist and Practicing Nonconformist, Amateur Writer, Prolific Dreamer, Hardcore Misanthrope

14 thoughts on “America, Where Are You Now?”

  1. I am most disillusioned as well, Peter. And the sad fact is that there is no place to go to escape from what this hell hole represents; destruction, cruelty, barbarism, evil, torture, corruption and death. America and Americans are evil, personified and this is projected outward to encompass every living thing on this planet.

    Many times, I am so distraught, I cannot even think straight. I have the best of intentions so often, but I am finally getting to my ‘fed up’ point with so-called ‘humans’. There is not a goddamn thing ‘human’ about the majority of us.

    I hear you! Believe me, I hear you!

    Liked by 7 people

      1. Unfortunately, this may not be anybody’s planet for very long since ‘humans’ are hell bent on destroying it. But if I could, I would most definitely claim to be from some other universe other than this one that contains that which would destroy its own world.

        Liked by 4 people

    1. My position is equal to my view on the government. Oppressive. And, growing in severity. Increasing taxes, fees, fines, licensing, permits, parking, tolls where does it stop, or even level off. It hasn’t. It won’t. And we know where the funds are funneled: To fuel the war machine. However, my answer doesn’t do justice to your question. It’s complicated, isn’t it. But let’s let it stand at that. For now at least.

      Thanks for reading.

      Peace, strength, courage.

      Liked by 4 people

  2. This cat shelter! We bomb everything and everybody — this evil empire of ours. My gosh, you, Peter, once in Vietnam! Now you try to bring peace and love to all people — and animals! So maybe there’s hope for many others . . . though right now I find it hard to find even a few rays of hope for us and the world.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Yes, sorry, you do explain that, I believe, in your post. It’s good right now, in any case, to be thinking,as you are, about Vietnam — what the country did over there, and the conflicts it engendered here. For a long time, it seems that war was not popular, and then we seemed to forget.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I came close. Out of basic training in Texas to technical school in Illinois, I had orders to go U-Tapao Air Force Base in Thailand. I didn’t want to go. My wife was expecting, and I’d be away for no less than 12 months. I pleaded my case to the Base Commander. He wasted no time telling me there wasn’t a thing he could do and politely sent me on my way. A full bird colonel and there wasn’t anything he could do, seemed odd. Well, I went home, gave the wife the bad news, and we started planning for my absence. A day or so later, I had new orders to my home state of Indiana. I never learned if he had anything to with that or not.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. So heartbreaking. I remember seeing an article about that shelter and wondering, sadly, how long it would survive. It just sums up this addiction to violence. This infection they spread of negativity, feeding off it, it’s so sick, even sicker because it is deliberate, but not many people look beyond the surface. It is just so soul-destroying. All of it. It consumes me, all the time, I don’t know what to say anymore. There is just so much that is wrong it feels like the tipping point has been well and truly passed. For every awakened, compassionate soul, there are thousands who are not, and for every tiny glimmer of hope, a seldgehammer of violence, cruelty, ignorance and heartlessness comes crashing down. The anger, frustration, sadness, despair just burns and moving amongst people all the time, every day, who just see nothing, feel nothing, are aware of nothing, just drives me crazy. That’s why it feels like nothing will ever chnage. ‘They’ are winning because most people refuse to wake up, to look at what is really happening.

    Liked by 2 people

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