i recently finished reading the third volume of senator john lewis and nate powell's 'March' trilogy.
it tells the story of the black civil rights movement in the usa, from the first hand perspective of sen. lewis.
it's an often brutal, but inspiring story - i was a bit ashamed that i didn't know more about the history of the movement, and shocked that such appalling injustice was routinely condoned so recently - some of the events retold happened in my lifetime.
the narrative concludes with the inauguration of barack obama - a hopeful conclusion. if you've not read the books, i'd urge you to seek them out, they're really good.
then a few days ago, alvin hall was on the bbc. he was talking about the rhetoric spouted by donald trump, and about how, if you were a person of colour, or a member of a minority group, there's a there's a chilling and unmissable subtext to that language.
so when trump talks about making america "great again", i'm wondering if the golden age that he's harking back to is that segregated age... or at least if that's what great chunks of his support are hoping for. he has the backing of the kkk for starters.
and that's got me thinking about the michael rosen poem that's been doing the rounds...
'I sometimes fear that
people think that fascism arrives in fancy dress
worn by grotesques and monsters
as played out in endless re-runs of the Nazis.
Fascism arrives as your friend.
It will restore your honour,
make you feel proud,
protect your house,
give you a job,
clean up the neighbourhood,
remind you of how great you once were,
clear out the venal and the corrupt,
remove anything you feel is unlike you…
It doesn’t walk in saying,
“Our programme means militias, mass imprisonments, transportations, war and persecution." '
and even if he doesn't turn out to be a fascist demagogue, america has still elected a temperamentally unstable, tax-evading, draft-dodging, philandering, lying, narcissistic, racist, misogynist, sex pest as their commander-in-chief.
and of course we'll be sending boris johnson over there to do business with him.
all very depressing.