It’s always darkest before the dawn, right?

I feel kind of spacey. Thank this sudden onset cold and the metaphorical buttload (I did not shelve the pills) of pseudoephedrine I’m using to contain it. I possibly haven’t eaten enough food today, which is a rarity for me. I don’t have the motivation to seek out food and the more I trawl the internet, the less motivation I have to do anything but pull away from the world.

Shit’s bad, yo. Seriously. The hanging at Piedmont Park (an apparent suicide surrounded by questionable evidence). The brutal killings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castle by US law enforcement. The sniper attacks in Dallas during a peaceful protest, resulting in the deaths of five police officers. Things are terrifying out there as racial tensions reach a boiling point. Is the US on the brink of another civil war? Can police please stop shooting black people? I don’t feel like that’s a big ask. People are being killed by those who are supposed to serve and protect. It’s not like this is a new thing, but for fuck’s sake, can’t we make it an old thing? There are few words that epitomise it as much as “horrifying” does. It’s sickening that people in positions of power are repeatedly abusing that power to the detriment of those without. I’m not used to being this close to a culture of systemic violence. Cops back home don’t carry guns. The first time I saw a cop in New York with a gun on his hip I freaked out. When I lived in an island sanctuary half a world away it was easy to dismiss these kind of occurrences. Exaggeration, the US was Hollywood, it wasn’t real to me. Living now in Toronto, everything seems closer, fresher. Day after day, report after report of violent incidents. Has it always been this way? Has social media only made its reporting more prevalent? Or are there other factors at play?

This Trump thing freaks me out. Brexit freaks me out. It’s like a trickle effect of previously hidden xenophobia and racism have worked their way up to a stream. Ordinary everyday bigots hear these rich, white figureheads spouting disgusting rhetoric and feel okay about spouting it themselves. At a time where we should be progressing as a people, we’re being pulled backwards by terrifying regressive attitudes. It’s becoming all too apparent that this shit has been bubbling under the surface and the dam’s about to break. I know that buying into fear is the wrong thing to do, but at times it seems hard to do anything else. In a world where we’ve managed to harness science and knowledge to prevent small inconveniences like seeds in our watermelon, why are innocent people dying for the colour of their skin? Was it more important to develop the latest iPhone than the social consciousness to look out for others?

If this is the nightmare we live in, I’m ready to wake up.


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