Dark clouds roll across the matte grey sky. And it is beautiful. Leaves dance to a tune only they can hear. And it is beautiful. Tall pines and oaks reach up to speak to the clouds and sway gently to their whispered response.
Winter comes to America. And if it were just limited to the natural cycle that we experience every year, it would be beautiful and I could try to wax eloquent in awe of its majesty.
But the winter that has come to America is one of hatred, anger, opinion-based dogmatism, divisiveness, hypocrisy and the seemingly never-ending quest of those in power to grab more power at the expense of everyone else.
The winter that has come to America may be among its last. The great experiment that is America founded on lofty principles of equality and freedom that it has never attained may be at an end.
Not because its reach has failed to exceed its grasp – for what are lofty principles but stretch goals we should all be striving to meet – but because as a people, from our unscrupulous leaders all the way across too much of the populace, we are no longer even trying to do what’s right. We’re not seeking to be better ourselves or to improve humanity. Instead we seem to be trying to outdo one another in demonstrating the basest of human traits.
Our so-called leaders are so consumed with propping up a status quo that history has repeatedly shown us is unsustainable that they are pushing us faster and closer to the cliff rather than steering us to safety.
Whenever inequality is as stark as in America today – whether measured by income, healthcare, opportunities for education or employment, exposure to the criminal injustice system or the toxic environments relegated to the poorest communities – whenever the majority of the people are suffering under that unequal weight, the scales must shift. The center will not hold. Empire will fall, whether in five years or fifty, since in the great expanse of time either is but a mere blink.
The rejuvenative cycle we have all come to expect when winter wanes and spring blooms forth is inevitable in the natural world, and in this most unnatural of worlds we call America today.
And winter comes, and the days grow short and darkness looms just over the horizon.