The Free Market Of Moral Outrage
I can’t wait until we start killing prisoners for sport, like in the dystopia depicted in the Steven King story turned crappy movie starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, The Running Man.
I don’t think we’re that far off, and lately I’ve been thinking that maybe it’s time we just embrace violence. Kill who needs to be killed. I mean Jesus Christ, it doesn’t always have to be such a bummer, does it? And didn’t Obama just prove that to be true, bookending his SOTU with a celebration of death?
In the free market of moral outrage, those of us who go through the motions of expressing concern are free to choose which atrocities to be disturbed by, and which ones to sort of let slide. I wasted nearly a minute of my life tweeting to some guy who calls himself BardOfEarth because he went ballistic over a cat that had its head bashed in and the word “Liberal” scrawled across its dead corpse.
The image of the dead cat is terrible, but these are terrible times, and in the free market of moral outrage I choose to be more disgusted that a Marine can get off with just a pay cut and drop in rank for slaughtering women and children in Haditha than for some sick fuck’s misplaced political rage.
My twitter feed is a mosaic of moral outrage, and I’m sorta getting tired of this woman from #Bahrain. Her father and husband have both been tortured in prison and she’s always talking about terrible shit happening. I’m considering unfollowing her. Or maybe tweeting her that The State killing their little uprising doesn’t blip in the US, because Bahrain lends America its oceanic parking lot for its 5th fleet. And to spit in her face, the president quietly supplies Bahrani royalty with weaponry:
President Barack Obama’s administration has been delaying its planned $53 million arms sale to Bahrain due to human rights concerns and congressional opposition, but this week administration officials told several congressional offices that they will move forward with a new and different package of arms sales — without any formal notification to the public.
In a recent exchange with a fellow blogger, there were some thoughts shared regarding the philosophical opposition to war as juxtaposed to the sometimes vicious behavior of (all of us at times) bloggers and commenters; civil discourse abandoned for mud wrestling, implying an inability to practice what one preaches. Guilty.
Despite my own personal failings, in the free market of moral outrage, I’m gonna continue using my market share of the social media revolution to amplify my personal mosaic of moral outrage. And to make the tediousness of my anti-imperial brand more palatable, I’ll keep offering poetic interludes, like this one, that explores the possibility that at times I behave like a dickish somnambulist:
In poems I sound the call
typifying dissent with words untied to action.
In life I daily fail, same as the rest.
Who can say, from one day to the next, what
In poems I am the music dancing from word
to word, line to line, changing like a shape-shifter
perhaps in a shed where motes of dust linger
in suspension, where
the diffusion of afternoon light outside animates
the tiny drama of my existence.
In life I yell at my dogs for delaying our progress
when they nose out tidbits from alleyway trashcans.
They glance back at me, only slightly perturbed
by the volume of my voice
which makes me angrier, which causes me
to act stupider, which is why
I promptly leash when I cannot seem to whisper.
In poems I sound the alarm, but cannot disable
the snooze button.
In life too often I wonder if I’m really awake.