Tuesday, September 09, 2008

"To the Stars...

through difficulty"

These words I seem to have known forever; never have they seemed more appropriate than now!

The motto of my state, traceable through history back to the Romans.

So many seem to turn their back on history these days; that in doing so they doom us to repeat it seems not to bother them at all!

147 years ago this was agreed on and adopted as "The Great Seal of the State of Kansas". Centered on a field of blue, it also became her flag. The culmination of a long period of bloody intimidation and hatred, fueled by forces of "the status quo", or those who would stride forward into the light of day having tried to better themselves and the country they loved!

That of course, was not the end of the struggles, of the death, or the destruction.

It wasn't enough that two competing state constitutions had been written, one legitimizing slavery, the other freedom. It wasn't enough that not only homes, but whole cities were burnt; fathers were drug away and stabbed only to linger and die a year later from infections (William "Buffalo Bill" Cody's father) or people were drug from their cabins and murdered (John Brown at Pottawatomie Creek) in return for which others exacted revenge (the Marais des Cygnes massacre).

There are those who know of William Quantrill's burning of Lawrence in 1863. Most don't know that was the 2nd attack on Lawrence, Kansas. 7 years before "pro-slavery" forces had ransacked the town, destroying printing presses and burning what they could.

So much for freedom of speech...

You would think in a state where so many had died as a direct result of hatred, words would be tempered with thought! You would think that tolerance would be a watchword...that an effort would be made to promote peace, love and understanding among all her citizens...

Yet, of late, Kansas is known as much for one small group of hate-mongers as she is all of her other attributes and history. They have become known throughout the world for their particular brand of vehement intolerance. They know no shame in parading children as they spout their vitriol, and delight in causing pain to those who are seeking nothing more than to bury their loved ones.

I'm trying not to give them a single counter click by not mentioning their name or that of the "church" they belong to; though I try very hard not to deal in "negative energy", if I could trade my being for having all of theirs and their ilk beamed from the planet I would.

Our Governor has taken them on legally, though they still persist.

Sadly, not only do they believe that God hates fallen soldiers, or musicians, or accident victims, but he must hate high school students as well, because they protested at my nephew's high school graduation several years ago!

Of late, I almost fear admitting where I'm from! That 2,764,00 of us can be branded by 75 so is sad, but in this age of video clips and soundbytes it seems it is so...

It is very hard indeed not to wish that their "god" would inflict as much pain on them as they have in "his" name!



annie said...

i know of what you speak. good for you for separating yourself from such hatred and ignorance. i am so sickened and fed-up with their ilk. luckily for kansas and your readers, there are folks like you around.

Carolyn Ann said...

Powerful words, Alan!

You're not the only one - Sean Tevis is out there, too! :-)

Carolyn Ann

fineartist said...

I know the scoundrels you're talking about and yeah they suck, and they know the law, which sucks more.

My sister has had to deal with them on more occasions than I can name, she being in the Patriot Guard, but you know that.

Hugs you Alan, and I agree with you entirely. xx

beckyboop said...

It is sad and sickening. I am embarrassed as well.

They protest chanting and singing their hatred. The whole time they have cheesy smiles on their faces. It is freaky. They surround themselves with their children to protect themselves. They carry video cameras while they are protesting just in case they need evidence to sue someone or something.

The only time I've seen them rattled is when I witnessed two young gay men, holding hands, skipping right through their group. They even stopped singing and chanting for a minute. It was a great moment.

I wrote a story about my first encounter with them in 2006.


LucyTolliday said...

A good well made point. I know of the group which you refer to. A tiny group full of such hatrid and bile who cause great upset to greaveing families.

Chandira said...

I truly believe in karma Alan, and it's not what most people think. It's more immediate. They are in their own hell right now. They must be terrified of all the things they hate so very much.

I could think of a few punishments to in inflict on them... lol
Most of it would be pleasure to the rest of us.. ;-)

Love them as best you can, they are suffering themselves mightily.

zilla said...

I'm so naive on the topic I had to oogle-gay ansas-kay atemongers-hay.


I know how you feel. I'm looking forward to the day when overseas travel doesn't involve the temptation to wear a maple leaf lapel pin.

My "Kansas stereotype" comes from a young woman I met in art school. For the longest time, I thought she was from New York City. She had this subtle elegance and sophistication about her, but kind of a brash way of getting her point across. I couldn't figure out why she wore overalls most days and her paintings were all so bucolic -- like hot pink cows, for example, on a field of electric blue. So, one day, without letting on that I thought she should explore subject matter more familiar to her, I asked her, "Why are you so fond of cows?"

She said, and I quote, "Oy, vey! My family raises cows and I miss them so much! They're the sweetest animal there is!"

Then she asked me if my boyfriend and I would like to join her boyfriend and her for dancing at drinks at the Nectarine Ballroom on "breeder night."

Kansas is fine by me.


*Ange* Life in the PS said...

God bless the Patriot Guard and God Bless YOU.

Chandira is a dear a soul, but this sounds like child abuse to me. Both for the children of the dead, and the children having to stand and be subjected to that hatred alongside their crazy parents (who should already be under suspicion of child abuse, in my book). Surely there can be some law preventing children from being used like this.

I hope the governor comes up with one.

Bobby said...

You just wonder how a group of people could get from point A to point B in their thinking...that particular point A to that particular point B...that's some scary logic - to come to the conclusion that...that...is what should be done