Nobody asked but …

I remember other times when our country has seemed on the brink of running off its rails.

My cultural memory keeps me ever in mind of Valley Forge, the KKK, and the Whiskey Rebellion. We, as a society, wear the Civil War on our sleeves. Freedom of speech, in the form of historians’ writings, has kept us in the loop on the genocide of the Native Americans, the overthrow of Hawaii, the Spanish-American War, the yellow fever, and two World Wars. My own ancestors have made sure I remember the Great Depression.

In my life, I have seen the sky full of war planes, a polio epidemic, Vietnam, McCarthyism, Watergate (and subsequent scandals), Kent State, urban race riots, military adventurism (read quagmirism), 911, the seeds of past wars becoming the weeds of future wars.

We have survived. We are surviving. Three hate filled mass killings or attempted killings tore into our collective conscience in the past week, the supermarket in Kentucky, the mailbombs from Florida, and the synagogue in Pittsburgh.

These instances are unbearable. But we will stay on the rails. We will survive.

— Kilgore Forelle

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