Tuesday, July 16, 2013

I Need a New Bedtime Story

Dear John,
The apocalypse is upon us. Last month the Supreme Court ruled that the agricultural giants were immune from lawsuits; now they've done the same for the drug companies. It's good to see that the government is protecting us, isn't it? Even if a company covers up a side effect, they can't be sued for damage or death caused by that side effect. The world as I know it must have ended somewhere along the way and I missed the announcement. And again I'm reminded of the evening Mama cried because I didn't trust the government to look out for our best interests. I'm glad she was able to keep believing that - it was so central for her. My years and view are different.
It's odd to remember how optimistic our generation was at the beginning. While our parents' generation understandably valued stability, we wanted equity. Never having known instability, that was natural for us. And we really believed we could change things. At least, we believed it until 1968. That year was the turning point for all of us; a generation of idealists turned into cynics. We'll all end up in nursing homes in our dotage, still re-hashing 1968 and all the what-ifs of that year.
So now we have the executive branch spying on us, the judicial branch protecting Big Business from us, and the legislative branch ignoring us. This country has seen worse days. But I'm feeling a weary cynicism tonight. Now, instead of trying to change the world, I pray, "Lord, have mercy" and try to change myself. Maybe that would have been the best thing for us to do all along.
I miss you tonight. We spent so many hours talking about the flow of history and world view in the 20th century, trying to make sense of the changes we'd seen and understand ourselves in historical context. It was wonderful to be married to someone who saw the importance of historical context! That's another conversation we could have had at Wendy's and amazed Marcus. It's the kind of thing we always liked to talk to each other about.
If you want to come and visit tonight, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the world today. And maybe you could tell me a little bit about what Heaven is like. It would be nice to hear about good things to come. Please come and tell be a bedtime story!
Can't wait to be with you,

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