Catching Up With A Week That Was   1 comment

Much has happened since going to Memphis to attend the International Blues Challenge. For starters, the NY Times Travel section was two weeks late in providing a good article, “Roll Over, Elvis. Meet Indie Memphis.” We now know we missed a lot.

While in Memphis, the US Supreme Court decision involving the Fair Elections Now Act works against the continued corporate takeover of our government. Are corporations evil? No! Neither are the people who work within their controlling environments. However, with the Supreme Court’s recent decision, it is becoming even more convincing that we need to redesign a poorly designed invention of our culture (corporations). I know this will not be an easy task since most of us are products of the corporate mentality and lifestyle. Still, if we value the mystery and categories of human enterprise, we must find ways to level the playing field. It is important to remember that there is nothing more unequal than the equal treatment of unequals.

Is This A Good Year To Be Born — Newsweek, 1967

The great US historian and activist Howard Zinn, who helped change many Americans’ conscience, passed away this week at age 87. I first learned about Howard Zinn in the late sixties while still in the Army. During this time, frustrated by our continued involvement in Vietnam, I began keeping a scrapbook of articles, opt-ad columns, political cartoons, and photos. During this time, I first read the Zinn quote, “Dissent is the highest form of patriotism,” which has since been carved into my very being. Although many have read his book, The People’s History of the United States, which gives voice to Native Americans, Blacks, women, immigrants, poor laborers, and others not covered in mainstream history, still many only got to know of him through the recent History Channel, The People Speak. A believer in democracy by the people, and in light of the above mentioned US Supreme Court decision, I share this Zinn quote: “If those in charge of our society – politicians, corporate executives, and owners of press and television – can dominate our ideas, they will be secure in their power. They will not need soldiers patrolling the streets. We will control ourselves.”

Pogo — 1967

This past week witnessed two examples of a great leader in action: President Barak Obama’s State of the Union speech and, two days later, his appearance before and discussion with the Republican Caucus. I urge you to make your own judgment by viewing the videos on YouTube.

Lastly, this past week also so the death of J.D. Salinger. Not being a “reader” as a child and young adult, one of the first novels I read (all-be-it because I had to in senior English) in the late ’50s was Catcher In The Rye, and like so many young people of the time, it had a lasting impression. So many of us share a kinship with Holden and the phony world we live in.

“If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you’ll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don’t feel like going into it if you want to know the truth.” The opening line from Catcher in The Rye.

I will end this posting by sharing an email from brother Tom:

The cat and I were laughing ( As in J.D. Salinger’s story. “The Laughing Man” ) about persons who repeatedly speak of “coming-out” with their BOOK  explaining “IT” all….. And we thought of Theroux’s quote :

“A person becomes a writer because they are DEFICIENT.
They have problems;
They are “crazy”;
They have unhappy families…
They are “eccentric” and…
Not because they read a LOT  of books;
but on the contrary…
Maybe they haven’t read enough books!!!!!!!!
There is a strong irrationality about  THE WRITING LIFE…
Often a writer writes to maintain a need to be HUGGED and told that she is loved.”


Thanks, Tom. We may be far from one another, but we remain on the same wave link.

— kenne

One response to “Catching Up With A Week That Was

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  1. Reblogged this on Becoming is Superior to Being and commented:

    I’ve been spending more time going back through my blog posting during this time of COVID-19. This is a posting from January 2010 that still rings true today in so many ways. It was a time when we lost two great American writers, Howard Zenn and J. D. Salinger, as today we mourn Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s death. Whether we like it or not, the human condition remains much the same. — kenne


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