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Advice to College Graduates in the Age of Trump. The terror beyond the school gates awaits you.

By Feux Follets following x   2018 Jun 12, 4:13pm 96 views   1 comments   watch   sfw   quote     share    

Anyway, here’s my official joke on this sunny afternoon in the middle of this beautiful open campus quad. Ready?

Bang, bang, I’m dead!

No, really, in our present world, shouldn’t that pass for a joke? Think of it as my way of making light of a grim reality of your educational lives.

After all, imagine some classmate of yours, angry at, well, who knows what, or simply, as new head of the National Rifle Association and former illegal gunrunner Oliver North suggested recently, on Ritalin and devoted to violent video games, stalking onto this very campus this very afternoon.

He’s—and it almost certainly would be a “he”—spoiling for payback of some sort and he’s—who could doubt this in twenty-first-century America?—armed to the teeth with lethal, possibly military-style weaponry.

The odds are that, standing up at this podium in front of you as he began blowing people away, I might well be the first to go.

Hence, my joke! But of course you got it, didn’t you?

To be clear, on your graduation day I’m not just kidding around. I’m also doing what the truly old—I’m almost 74—always try to do: somehow get in the spirit of the young just about to step into, not out of, our world. It’s true that when I went to school back in the Neolithic Age, we had our own version of being blown away—and of active-shooter drills and of the fear of dying that went with them.

From the time we were little, we were, in the parlance of that moment, “ducking and covering”; that is, diving under our school desks for protection with our hands over our heads like (as one civil defense cartoon of the time had it) Bert the Turtle going into his shell.

We were protecting ourselves against a nuclear attack from a land you won’t even remember, the former Soviet Union, which imploded before you were born (R.I.P. 1991), aka the Ruskies, the Evil Empire. And yes, looking back, those tiny kids crouched under those desks, one of whom was me, couldn’t have represented a more pathetic image of “safety” or, to use the word that has dominated this American century, “security.” And yes, even as children, we knew it.

The underside of a desk and your hands were no defense against the atomic bombing of New York City (where I lived in those years, as I do today). In fact, you have to wonder what sad group of adults came up with that brilliant strategy for terrorizing children?

Those were the active-shooter drills of that particular lockdown moment, us under those desks as CONELRAD blared its warnings from a radio on the teacher’s desk and sirens howled in the streets outside.

Even at a ridiculously young age, you knew that you, your parents, your grandparents, your friends might not be around for long if that particular shooter, the Soviet Union, made it into your world. Its “shot” would, of course, have been heard not just in that classroom but around what was left of a nuclearized world.

So, believe me, whatever your nightmares about mass shooters in your schools may be, we had them, too.

Here, then, is an entrance-and-exit reality to start with: you can’t arm a citizenry like no other on the planet (Yemenis come in a distant second) and then successfully wall yourself off from that reality with fewer entrances and yet more arms.

You can’t let more than 300 million weapons loose in a single country, including millions of military-style assault rifles, as if preparing for a future war at home and expect nothing to happen. (It’s hardly surprising, under the circumstances, that this country leads the world by a long shot in what are politely called “mass shootings.”)

You can’t arm your police nationwide with weaponry and other equipment directly off the distant battlefields on which your armed forces have been fighting for almost 17 years, or fill their ranks and their SWAT teams nationwide with veterans off those very same battlefields who used those very same weapons and expect nothing to change.

You can’t fight wars for more than a decade and a half, still spreading in those same distant lands, and not expect them to come home somehow, even if in the fantasy figures of terror-minded refugees against whom you plan to build those walls and institute those travel bans.

You can’t have a Washington in which in 2003 and again in 2018—despite everything that’s happened in the years between in the Greater Middle East—“real men want to go to Tehran” and successfully wall yourself off from the results of that urge.

You can’t expect all of that and not also expect that somehow or other this will, to use the title of my new book, turn out to be a nation unmade by war.

There are no walls, no entrances or exits that can be closed in order to contain the damage from or protect the American people from Washington’s destructive follies.

Much more in full article: https://www.thenation.com/article/advice-to-college-graduates-in-the-age-of-trump/

#ClassOf2018 #College #WorldAffairs #Policy

Cue the downvotes and comments stating libbies are unpatriotic, hate Potus, just don't get it, TDS on a roll etc.

1   FortWayne   ignore (2)   2018 Jun 12, 4:19pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

They loaded up on debt during Obama administration. How is this all Trumps fault again? Shitty education system has been around for a long time, because liberals decided that education should be dumbed down to stupidest kid in the world as an average.
2   Feux Follets   ignore (0)   2018 Jun 12, 4:37pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote        

FortWayne says
They loaded up on debt during Obama administration. How is this all Trumps fault again? Shitty education system has been around for a long time, because liberals decided that education should be dumbed down to stupidest kid in the world as an average.

Read the article did you ?

The article isn't about education.

Novel idea - perhaps perusing the article before commenting would be appropriate.

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