The Lynchpin That is California

A lynchpin holds things together. I like to think of California, that way, and I’ll get round to explaining that point of view, shortly. First, you need some of the back story. A friend saw something that I reposted on Facebook:

http://www.blackwestchester.com/never-forget-americas-forgotten-mass-lynching-when-237-black-sharecroppers-were-murdered-in-arkansas/?fbclid=IwAR3PJEWfTuem7VbSMD7RpQjhaYflczkj3y-EevfexNQ2FfEOhA_djHz62Bk

About this article, my friend said:

Drives me nuts that that could’ve happened in this country I don’t care if it was hundred years ago it’s just ridiculous.

My response was:

  • Yes- I hear that lame dog excuse (that it happened hundreds of years ago) all the time.
  • It’s BS, because………… IT’S STILL HAPPENING!
  • The only difference is that now it’s GOVERNMENT SANCTIONED: Travel bans; immigrant detention centers; deportations; police abuse of Black and Brown people; prison system slavery; school to prison pipeline for many innocent Black n Brown students; and oh ya- that “university” that ICE just opened to trap n deport immigrant students. Also all the “gone missing” Native American women, and the crimes that we constantly commit on their reservations without suffering any legal consequences. …………CA could do A LOT better at treating people decently and fairly, if we were a sovereign nation that could close our borders to ICE and to a regime that wanted to build a wall through our farm lands, etc.

Reading my blog roll, of these last two years, you may notice a common thread. It’s a thread built around a stark contrast of us versus them.

While I sometimes………..(okay, maybe “often”) fall into a common trap of defining “them” as ALL republicans, or even just republican politicians on Capitol Hill, I try to remember to keep my eye on the prize.

The real gold medal prize would be recognition of California as a country of “unrecognized peoples”.

Truly, that is what we are. We are a COUNTRY made up of Indigenous Peoples, and immigrants, as well as a few of us who can say that we were born here, but truly, even if we were born here, unless we have Indigenous blood in our veins, we were born to immigrants and invaders.

We need to remember (if we want to not look completely ignorant of our history) that most of us fit into one of those three categories, the next time we consider telling someone else what right they have or don’t have to speak a different language in our hearing, or to walk on “OUR” streets. Those STREETS were all laid on stolen land. So were the railroads that were laid by underpaid immigrants and Black Slaves:

http://railroads.unl.edu/blog/?p=32

https://www.uscitizenship.info/Chinese-immigration-and-the-Transcontinental-railroad/

Regarding some of the crimes against humanity that I mentioned in my opening paragraph, I’ll cite sources, below. You’ll find some in many of my previous Medium posts, as well, along with some possible methods of making reparations. For that last, look especially for works in Medium by author Marcus Evans Ruiz, like this one:

https://medium.com/@marcus.ruiz.evans/how-californians-honor-indigenous-treaties-draft-7f460de2b47b

And other thoughtful and thoughtful provoking works of his, like this one:

https://medium.com/@marcus.ruiz.evans/the-collective-impact-of-california-history-on-native-tribes-f2da4975d1e0

And on to some information about those crimes against humanity that I mentioned earlier, if you have the stomach for it:

http://www.niwrc.org/resource-topic/missing-and-murdered-native-women

https://rewire.news/article/2016/04/14/missing-murdered-no-one-knows-many-native-women-disappeared/

https://www.aclu.org/issues/juvenile-justice/school-prison-pipeline

http://greenlining.org/blog/2018/school-to-prison-pipeline-black-kids-get-cops-white-kids-get-docs/

https://www.democracynow.org/2018/10/5/the_school_to_prison_pipeline_now

https://www.alternet.org/story/151732/21st-century_slaves%3A_how_corporations_exploit_prison_labor

http://occasionalplanet.org/2015/12/01/u-s-companies-make-a-killing-off-prison-slave-labor/

https://www.cbsnews.com/video/ice-arrests-dozens-of-illegal-immigrants-after-fake-university-sting/

I could go on, but I don’t think I need to. My fellow Californians are mostly “WOKE FOLK” and well educated. You are well enough educated that you’ve been able to follow the downward trend (read: spiral) of America, caused by this latest regime, and their collective corruption and greed, bolstered as it was by collusion from abroad, and bigotry from within.

If you’re wondering what I mean by “downward spiral” I’m alluding to real financial losses that I’ve cited in previous blog posts, here in Medium. They’re losses to the tune of $14 Billion+ and more from the tourism and farming industries. The working class, as a whole, lost even more, due to layoffs from large corporations whose CEOs got big tax breaks from the current regime.

And let’s not forget the latest 800,000 people working without pay, due to the government shut down.

And maybe it sounds like I’ve fallen into that common trap again, that I’ve mentioned before, of the “us versus them” blame game. The truth is that I DO blame “them”. “They” (tRump and his followers and enablers) are the ones who shutdown the government, and kept it shut down. They’re the ones who wrote tax breaks for the rich into policy that made the employees of those companies jobless. They’re the ones who jumped on tRump’s “Make America Great Again” bandwagon when America was never really all that great, but we were at least on the road to getting better.

My fellow Californians will understand this. We know that greatness isn’t greatness in proportion to financial wealth. We know that it doesn’t come with having dictatorial authority or influence.

  • We know that greatness is in the state of wealth that we achieve when we have the highest rate of employment, and the lowest rate of homelessness in compared to other countries.
  • We know that that greatness comes from extending caring not only to people but to the Earth Herself, such that we’re cleanly recycling housing materials, and protecting our organic food sources, from agencies that would dump or drill in our national parks and preserves and off our shores.
  • We know the interconnectedness and relationship dynamics of those first two proofs of greatness, and we continually strive to innovate technology, medicine and creative design that works together to improve the lot of our own UNRECOGNIZED NATION OF PEOPLE as well as the people of the WORLD.

That is what has always made CALIFORNIA GREAT as a NATION.

Please, my beloved California, continue to go forward being great, by remember what has made us great in the past. Remember our history and that of the Indigenous Peoples who were here before us, in order to LEARN by it. Learn from our Indigenous brothers and sisters how to care for each other and the land sustainably. Learn from the immigrants that made us wealthy how to improve our technology, and learn from our parents how to care for our elderly, so that they can guide our youth.

If we do this, greatness will forever shine on us and also out from us, to guide the rest of the world. The world will come to respect us, and seek to learn from us, the way they seek now to learn from Norway and Sweden when it comes to educational systems, prison systems and from Europe when it comes to health and education.

Continue to make me proud, California. I know you can.

Activist, Author, Secular Humanist, National of California, Wife, Mom, Daughter