Another day, another massacre in the USA. Now that we’re basking in America’s greatness again, I knew that if we tried hard enough we could top the death toll of the shooting at the Pulse dance club in Orlando, and lo and behold, in Las Vegas on October 1, 2017, we hit the jackpot. A total of 58 dead (59 if you count the shooter who killed himself before he could be apprehended) and over 500 wounded. Not a bad haul for a volley that lasted around 10 minutes. Since we’re talking Vegas, we can lay odds that someone whom we least suspect is already plotting how to exceed that total. And sure enough, on Sunday, November 5, before I was even able to put the finishing touches on this post, that attempt was made when a dishonorably discharged member of the Air Force, in an apparent act of revenge against the family of his estranged wife, waited for the church service to begin at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas before he opened fire on the congregation, killing 26, over half of them children, one of them still in its mother’s womb.
What exists in the space of not-knowing? I ask because I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t have the faintest idea of what’s happening in our Unraveled States right now. Until we know, if we ever do, we make guesses, assumptions, rationalizations, form beliefs, do whatever we must to fill that void of uncertainty and doubt. But in so doing, we blind ourselves to vital truths that lie below the snake line of perpetual noise generated by this vaunted Information Age.
It is with tremendous pleasure and pride that I announce the publication of Raw Spewage, the first volume of posts collected from this blog. Raw Spewage can be purchased through Amazon by clicking on the cover image above. Please note: if you search for the book directly on the Amazon site, you will need to search by my name, not the title.
Many thanks to Amanda Higgibotham and Shane Charanias for seeing the potential in this project and making it possible.
Since my last post in April of last year, I have been writing and involving myself in some form or other with words, but I have chosen to do it in the private forum of a journal and other projects. These alternative outlets have given me the freedom necessary to work through troubled thoughts and feelings without the worry of criticism or judgment, in hopes that the words, once I was able to spit them out via the keyboard, would enable me to confront and, therefore, understand certain truths – good, bad or indifferent – about myself and the world. These truths, in turn, would inform a personal philosophy to guide me in my way through a world that increasingly makes no sense or diverges so far from my sense of common decency that I’ve wondered if I might be losing my goddamned mind.
A large part of reclaiming a narrative is reframing or discrediting language that historically has been used to demean certain groups and diminish their power in society. Authoritarians, especially Trump, bristle at the notion of political correctness, which is to say a call for greater sensitivity in the language one uses publicly in mixed company. And in today’s always connected and increasingly global society, there’s rarely a time when we’re not in mixed company.