Panel from Sandman #39, “The Soft Places.” It’s the Latin and the translation I’m calling your attention to here.
I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with politics. On the one hand, societies are like texts. No matter how good they are, they can always be better, and politics are the way you revise a society. On the other hand, politics are about power. People absolutely destroy one another — often in unethical and illegal ways (and sometimes LITERALLY, in the literal sense of the word) — over power. There’s no separating these aspects of politics from one another. They are two sides of the same coin.
So, what’s a kind-hearted person who has never once been in a fight and has a hard time even contemplating the ugliness of power, but who is uber-committed to the improvement of the society he lives in, to do?
Haha. Engage in politics, apparently. As much as politics leave a bad taste in my mouth, compel me to struggle against the regional culture that birthed me, and create interpersonal problems with people I love, I can’t stop. And honestly, the fact that people I know and love disagree with my views — even to the point that they do such stupid things on my Facebook timeline I have to block them — is not my problem. It’s theirs.
They are the ones who raised me to be a Southern Man with all the baggage that entails. They are the ones who put “oldest child” responsibilities on me when I was too young to understand what that even meant. They’re the ones who taught me to not be racist or sexist (and they did a very good job of that), despite the fact that they never quite divorced themselves from the racism and sexism of the mid-20th Century.
The worst thing you can be, if you’re a (White) Southerner, is a hypocrite. If you can’t practice what you preach down here, best to just not preach it. Hypocrisy is worse than murder. Yet, (White) Southern Culture has elevated hypocrisy to an art form.
Other peoples’ racism and sexism are not my problem, except insofar as they influence public policy and public behavior. I’m done walking on eggshells around people who are offensive and don’t realize it. Also done thinking I am responsible for the behavior of people who were fully-formed adults before I was even born. Behavioral responsibility runs entirely in the other direction. They raised me. I didn’t raise them. I’m sure they believe they’ve reared a monster. And I don’t care. I enjoy being a monster.
I have objections to the way American society in general, and Southern society in particular, are working right now.
It’s the second decade of the goddamned 21st Century and I still have to write about sexism, racism, and class? On BLOGS??? What what what????? I’m offended by that, but it’s my problem, no one else’s. I’m the one who has to deal with the things that offend me here in these great United States. No one is going to deal with it for me.
I’ve spent most of my life honing my communication skills, developing a deep understanding of the pathologies of Southern culture, and figuring out why some groups persist socially while others die. I’ll be 50 before I know it. If I quit now I will die an unhappy man and I will be damned, in the Christian sense of that word.
I don’t want to go to Hell, people. I’m not a conventional Christian. I don’t go to church and I don’t read my Bible (though I can quote it front and back if need be) and I do my best to not pray. But I know what my Maker expects of me. It expects me to do my very best for people who are more disadvantaged than me on account of the corruption that’s run amok in my society since before I was born. That, and take care of my dependents. All the Universe expects of flawed, tiny Gene’O.
It seems like a little. But it’s a lot. Just that much fills my days. Fills nearly all of them. So I’m gonna figure out how to talk about this stuff on the internet for as long as I can find people to give me stages on which to perform. And that starts here, on this dying blog.
If you weren’t aware, this blog has been dying a slow death for months now. It’s been important to mine and Diana’s project, and the time I put into both this blog and my former blog were well-spent. Me blogging here made us a lot of friends during the first year. Lately, not so much. A post here gets me less attention than a Facebook note posted for a restricted audience, and I’m weak on Facebook. So I’m not maintaining Just Gene’O much longer, but I am not done quite yet.
This blog, since I redesigned it last August, has had three purposes
1. We archive things here we need easy access to but which don’t fit on our other blogs, and I can do things here we can’t do on other blogs, like tell you we’re having a Feminist Friday discussion at Victim to Charm this week.
2. This is where you get to know me personally — that, along with supporting Diana’s premiere project — are what the #WeekendCoffeeShare posts have been about up to this point.
3. On occasion, I’ve used this blog to turn bloggers on to social opportunities like #SundayBlogShare and the Blog Blitz (which is going on today, btw).
And that’s it. That’s all it’s good for, and traffic here is tanking. Diana and I are in the process of re-distributing the archival pages. Sourcerer gets the pop culture, Part Time Monster gets the feminism.
Hello, gloves. Enjoy your relationship with my fists for now. You will be coming off soon. And I promise, gloves. It’s not you. This all about me.
The rest gets folded into Sourcerer, or else I just let it go until I am able to re-think what I want out of the internet and rebuild my personal presence. This transition will take a few weeks, but once it’s done the landscape in our corner of the blogosphere will be irrevocably changed.
- The current archival pages will be elsewhere and the ones here won’t be updated any more.
- If you want to get to know me personally, you’ll need to know me on Facebook (which is relatively easy to pull off), or else you’ll need to hang around Sourcerer on the weekends and comment on the threads over there.
- You’ll need to find social opportunities on your own for the short term, until I decide whether to fold those into Sourcerer or create a new webspace for Gene’O.
The purpose of this blog from here on out is to establish that I can write well about politics, until such time as I start to place political posts on blogs larger than I can build myself.
If you don’t like my politics (and I’ve given you adequate information over the past couple of years for you to decide how you feel about my politics), it’s time for you to hit the exit.
This is not the end, but everything I do on this blog from here on out is a coda.
I’m shutting this blog down and leaving the archives intact so as not to kill any links to other people’s blogs. Eventually, I will put up a static page and be done.
I’ve made up my mind. This will proceed, and it will be complete by October at the latest.
In the meantime, if you DO like my politics, or if you’ve been following me since day one and you understand that whatever else I am doing, I am telling a pretty awesome story in which several other bloggers are characters . . . Stick around.
I’m opening a new front in my quest to take over the Internet as of now. The foundational posts will be published here, because I don’t have anyplace else to publish them.
Every end is a beginning. It’s a stupid cliche, but it works for this.
Play your ukulele, whatever else you do. Because life is too short to not.
Even if your grades are bad, it doesn’t mean you’re failing.
(How am I doing here, Gretchen?)