Let's be honest here, too. For women outside of Kabul (and a couple of other places), things sucked pretty badly before the Taliban in Afghanistan. Here, in the United States, Aisha, the Rude Pundit personally knows women who say that their families will kill them if they stray from arranged marriages to get jobs or assert any independence. One says that her male relatives will kill her and make it look like she just disappeared. Are we supposed to bomb Brooklyn to change this?
So, yes, we would like to be the conquering heroes, the knights riding in to save the damsels in distress, God, how we ache to be that, but such fairy tales are not real. Killing dragons would be easier. What's real is an effort that will take decades to achieve, but one that can only begin in earnest once we are gone. We're sorry, Aisha. Most of us can't imagine your pain, your life, your fear. But when you're in a plane that's plunging out of the sky, you have to put on your own oxygen mask before you can help anyone else put on theirs.
(Note: we're never leaving Afghanistan.)
Sadly so. The futility of the 'mission' isn't enough to get us to leave. The powers that be have to figure out a way to get out without looking like they 'lost'. That we're broke might help, but throwing money down a rathole in pursuit of the impossible is not enough by itself. Pride goeth before a fall, and fall we will.
I think the best that can happen is we'll all get our own goats to hump.
Let us mourn now for the passing of the days when we could mock the rednecks. As backwards ass country fucks, these assholes wore their stupidity and ignorance as badges of pride, penning songs to celebrate how immune they are to progress and how much they love white racist governors. Whether we lived among the rednecks in South or Midwest or West of the United States, or if we sat in our liberal brownstones of the wicked Northeast, we whose necks remained unburned could feel vastly superior to the rednecks and scoff as they wallowed in the mud of their own inbred pool of devolutionary thinking. When George W. Bush was elected, "Quel horreur," we thought as we ironically drank our Pabst Blue Ribbons and got into alt-country music, as if overcompensating for being made to feel unAmerican in the reflection of the redneck uber-patriotic mirror. Sure, we could dismiss the Bush election as the primal yawp of the yahoos. We didn't vote for him. They did. Our little island of tolerance was shrinking, though. Oh, for the comfort of the myth of geographical identity.
But now, with the surge in Islamophobia and the anti-immigrant tear the nation is on, we cannot deny it anymore: we are a redneck nation, even here in the supposed bastions of liberality.
Here's the deal, rednecks of all income levels and corners of the country: you want freedom of religion? This is what you get. You want unregulated capitalism? Well, motherfuckers, telling someone what property they can buy and where they can build is pretty much as anti-capitalist/government-interferin'/fascist/communist/whatever-the-fuck-you-idiots-call-it as you can get. And if you really think that the growing Muslim population is gonna bring Sharia law to America, then you should probably stop trying to create laws against things like gay marriage based on your Bible and get on board with the separation of church and state. 'Cause, see, that works for all faiths, not just the ones you choose.
The thing about rednecks, though? They don't learn. As far they're concerned, they're right, you're wrong, and fuck you for thinking differently and using "facts" and "logic," you elitist pussy. Grunting, heaving emotion is what works. Shit-tossing instead of dialogue.
Tomorrow: Oh, so many Mexicans.
I kinardly wait. ¡O Sí!