We are still debating whether or not to watch the debate. It's live at 6pm Seattle time, which is right when the girls eat dinner. I had forgotten what it's like to be scheduled by the needs of others.
We'll probably pre-record it and watch the debate later. It probably won't be a very entertaining experience. I really am angry at how all this unpleasantness is being forced on us. We have to pay attention, but even at that we are fast approaching the slippery slope to fascism.
I am still working out my response to Colson Whitehead's novel, The Underground Railroad.
Just a few notes from the beginning of the novel:
The unique feature of slavery in this country was the reduction of human beings to merchandise. This was a pure capitalist innovation with no counterweight of a humanist or religious outlook toward enslaved Africans.
Whitehead writes a shocking re-creation of a scene at a slave market, as men and women are sold in an atmosphere of brawling energy and optimism on the part of the crowd. The more Whitehead reports on this in a parody of the objective eyewitness the more horrible it all seems. This is an atmosphere where an observation such as, "She would have fetched more but for that season's glut of young girls," seems quite reasonable. It's business, and business is not about human rights. And it's fun when you have interesting merchandise to buy and sell.
The merchant will face some adversity in his pursuit of profit, but usually things turn out well. As a slave ship returns to Liverpool, having sold most of its cargo, exchanging it for "sugar and tobacco, there were fewer screams below decks." So it was a successful voyage. Whitehead lets the blatant awfulness of that moment stand without embellishment.
Whitehead mimics the normalizing tone that is characteristic of all forms of fascism. Slavery was American fascism, still a nostalgic favorite in the dear old Southland.
The grotesque Trump has allowed the normalizing of assaults on human decency that are coarsening American life past the point of no return.