Time for a New Monster?

It has been a week since the election that will put Donald Trump in the White House. In that time, the news has been flooded by articles on how such a widely unpredicted result could have become manifest. Low black voter turnout, white women unexpectedly choosing Trump, the poor and the disenfranchised deciding this man will be their champion, ignorance, racism, misogyny, Islamophobia…all have done their rounds. And while we can debate their relative merit all day long, such an argument ignores the crucial point that all these individual “causes” have a common core: fear.

The article on how we counteract that fear is for another day, however. Today, let’s talk about how we embrace it. A vast majority of us are afraid, whether of our government or of the terrorists who may lurk in our midsts. And that’s nothing particularly new, but the sudden shift in our leadership promises to bring our fears sharply into focus. “Corrupt Government” doesn’t seem to cut it when you’re seriously discussing whether or not the new administration will build deportation camps or embrace torture as an interrogation technique. “Terrorism” fails to capture the sensation of finding swastikas scrawled over the walls of our cities. It’s a brave new world, and with it will surely come monsters.

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“I dunno, man…I really like this girl, but she’s into some really weird shit. And not in a good way. I mean, that too, which is awesome, but there’s other stuff that’s kind of freaking me out. Like sometimes she just goes all starey, and then she’ll just pop out with exactly what I’m thinking. Or I came in one day and she was talking to the fire in the woodstove. And, I know it sounds crazy, man, but before she knew I was there, I swear I heard something in the fire talking back! And then there’s just weird shit, like how she keeps all her toenail clippings. Seriously! I asked her about it one time, and she got this weird smile and said it was so no one could ever ‘gain power’ over her. So she keeps them all in a jar she hides under her bed,” Steve said.
And then he never spoke again. Continue reading