I suspect the reader might be weary of yet another praising of this most wondrous culture in Dzodze, Ghana. But I’m finding it simply impossible to not be constantly astonished by the warmth, generosity, humanity and vitality of these people we meet day in and day out. And parallel with that comes a growing disgust for so much of what is happening, has happened and looks like it will continue to happen in my country. If I unleashed the full force of that feeling, it would be summarized like this: What the fuck is wrong with us??!!!!
We got off the bus today in a nearby village with a festival in full swing. 50 white folks entering a sea of black folks and nothing but handshakes, smiles, warm greetings and welcoming gestures. I’m trying to picture a group of Africans getting off a bus at a country music festival in, say Texas, and wondering how the white folks would receive them. The mind reels.
And then we were seated under a canopy, but the hosts felt it was too close to the big speakers for our comfort, so they moved us further down the field in the open. And then it started to lightly rain. Some of us had umbrellas and little raingear, but mostly we were sitting in the drizzle hoping it wouldn’t escalate. And suddenly we saw a group coming towards us with a canopy that they picked up so they could cover us, leaving the village folks who had been sheltered in the open. (So sorry I didn’t react in time to get a photo!). To our credit, we waved them away, refusing the privilege of being (white) guests while thanking them for the thought. This is worth saying again. They were willing to leave themselves out in the rain to make complete strangers more comfortable.
Back in the U.S. of A., Facebook posted a photo of a billboard for a politician running for Congress that said, “Make America white again.” Children at the Mexican border are being taken from their parents and put in detention camps. The Supreme Court recently upheld our Fascist-in-Chief’s wish to ban “undesirable immigrants” based on nothing but their religious belief (Really? That’s Constitutional?) And some of the media and some citizens keep trying to justify these inhumane actions by joining other brainwashed folks who think they can fool themselves and others that they are something other than a despicable human being.
In fact, many of them are people who perhaps never felt the welcome and generosity we feel every day here, have no role model for what that looks like, feel traumatized and wounded by growing to adulthood never being wholly known or celebrated or loved in any true sense of that word. So perhaps it all can be understandable in some psychological sense. But I’m tired of trying to understand, justify and explain people’s inhumanity. They’re grown human beings who have a choice whether to be decent and they constantly refuse it.
Can someone explain to me why this is okay? No, don't bother. It's just wrong and I'm tired of hearing all the insights as to why people are so cruel and callous. Let's just stop.