Will the new president contemplate this?
Tonight, Romney and Obama debate for the third and final time – a sure to be tantalizing tap dance that will only circle the latent issues beneath America’s “foreign policy strategies” – those issues that are far too taboo to be mentioned in the debate, on the news, or even at all.
It’s important on evenings like this (is this not also the great ‘evening’ of the American empire itself?) not to get too caught up in the arguments and rhetoric of either side, nor in the post-debate blitzkrieg of intellectual analysis. At this time, we cannot afford to forfeit the attention due to the deeper, the deepest contemplations at hand, which are urgently pressing up towards the surface of mass consciousness. Here are such reflections from Pink Floyd’s, Roger Waters. Consider carefully what he has to say about the state of humanity and our apprehension of ourselves:
Thirty years ago when I wrote The Wall I was a frightened young man. Well not that young, I was 36 years old.
It took me a long time to get over my fears. Anyway, in the intervening years it has occurred to me that maybe the story of my fear and loss with its concomitant inevitable residue of ridicule, shame and punishment, provides an allegory for broader concerns: nationalism, racism, sexism, religion, whatever! All these issues and isms are driven by the same fears that drove my young life.
The new production of The Wall is an attempt to draw some comparisons, to illuminate our current predicament, and is dedicated to all the innocent lost in the intervening years.
In some quarters, among the chattering classes, there exists a cynical view that human beings as a collective are incapable of developing more “humane,” i.e., kinder, more generous, more cooperative, more empathetic relationships with one another.
In my view it is too early in our story to leap to such a conclusion. We are after all a very young species. I believe we have at least a chance to aspire to something better than the dog-eat-dog ritual slaughter that is our current response to our institutionalized fear of each other.