1.11.2006

Must Read: New Valenzuela

I hadn't seen Manuel Valenzuela, who used to write essays frequently for Axis of Logic, for quite awhile. I think the power of his writing is almost unequalled, and, well, I just agree with his passionate and well-reasoned vision and stand on fundamental issues.

Anyway, he has a current piece at Op-Ed News, "Of the Evil Empire: Imperialist Devastation of Peoples and the Evils Done in our Names". Excerpts:
Let us for a few moments put aside our lavish lifestyles of fortuitous endowment and providence that have made us blind to the realities of billions of our fellow humans. Let us ignore our plasma televisions, our DVDs, our two-story cookie cutter homes and gas-guzzling SUVs. Let us promise to not open our overstocked pantries and refrigerators, or to go out and eat at one of many corporate controlled franchise restaurants offering vast assortments of gargantuan meals. We should ignore the opulence of our society that dwells permanently in our minds that makes us forget the severe indigence and suffering that transpires beyond our shores and borders.

In short, we should come out of our luxurious bubble that has shielded us from the evils inflicted on billions of humans that have not been as privy to a life of safety and security. Let us traverse the road of reality, sojourning through history and through mirages of hidden truths. Let us dive into the making of the Evil Empire so that we may see what our government has and continues to do in our name. The road ahead will not be easy to swallow or comprehend, yet we must open our minds to the possibility that what has happened is real and what is occurring is not fiction. Only then will we understand why our hands are smeared in the blood of tens of millions of human cadavers and countless more whose lives and futures have been devastated at the hands of the United States of America. Only by knowing who and what we are can we correct ourselves . . .

Entire ethnicities, tribes, languages and cultures were eviscerated from the face of the Earth by those whose importance of property and ownership superceded the respect for human life. Beautiful peoples took with them to the grave lives living free, roaming pristine and untouched forests, deserts and prairies, being one with nature, respecting everything that breathed and a spirituality that has much to offer our capitalistic civilization. Advanced civilizations in wisdom and spirituality, yet seen as savages to the “more sophisticated” European people, native peoples’ way of life was vanished, never to fully flourish again. Millions ethnically cleansed, millions whose lives were made barren, all making way for the destructive bulldozer ravaging land and man. The Evil Empire had sprung to life, a trail of victims visible everywhere the giant walked.

Not satisfied with the killing of millions of native peoples, the citizens of America next decided to unleash hell onto each other. As a result the American Civil War of the latter part of the 19th century killed more than 600,000 people, leaving the United States mourning for brothers and sons, fathers and grandfathers. Graveyards littered the landscape; battlefields were transformed into fields of death and devastation. Divided a prospering nation stood, soaked in blood and agony, splitting apart families, creating widows and orphans. In the end, hundreds of thousands lay dead, many more maimed and wounded, all to quench the voracious appetite for violence, death and destruction . . .

Our society has been made blind to endemic and ceaseless worldwide suffering at the hands of our government. Through years of conditioning we now fail to blink at the carnage our military engenders around the world. From the cradle to the grave we are subjected to incessant violence, whether real or fictional, that makes us immune to the torment prevalent in the rest of the world. Through careful manipulation we are made to believe that war is peace, destruction is prosperity and murder is life.

The world burns while we live lives of consumption and production, happy worker bees stuck in hour long commutes working most of our productive lives. We live in peace and harmony at home, distracted from reality by our television screens and movie theatres, by our lavish lifestyles and wasteful society. In the land of the individual the communality of peoples is an alien principle. Content, conformist and passive thanks to our nation of plenty, we care not for peoples outside our borders. We have everything we need, after all, and a plethora of distractions in our daily lives prevents us from even considering that a larger world exists beyond our shores.

The impenetrable bubble we live in protects us from empathizing with billions whose lives have been made worse since the birth of the Evil Empire. We have been made ignorant to that which has been unleashed onto the world and that owes its existence to our continued lifestyle and complicity by acquiescence and failure to act. The Evil Empire runs rampant through the planet, devouring all in its path, enslaving millions and conquering and despoiling lands.

Meanwhile, inside the belly of the beast we sit, basking in extravagance and splendor, complacent in life and circumstance, unwilling to open our eyes and minds to the evils done in our name.
You owe it to yourself to read the whole piece. Powerful.

Also, I just realized Manuel has his own blog, Valenzuela's Veritas. So go there awreddy!