Tuesday, July 04, 2017

The Ugly Americans

So, I was 16 or 17, out bike riding with a friend of mine on the back roads of Tioga County.  A car with two redneck couples in it passed us, the driver swerved at us to scare us, laid on the horn, everyone yelled at us.  We gave them the finger, which was apparently socially unacceptable behavior, and the driver pulled onto the shoulder and slammed on the brakes.  It was a 2 door car so me and my friend had to wait while the non-driver male got his ass from out of the back seat.  Finally, the two guys came over to me and Chris, got into our faces and asked if we wanted to fight.  Chris worked out, and I had a box-cutter stuck up under the seat of my bike (which I pulled out), so we said “Sure”.

The assholes backed off, walked away muttering about faggots, etc etc and peeled out in a spray of gravel and dust.

30+ years later, it’s amazing how many variations on this scene I’ve gone through, whether walking, riding my bike or (ugh) jogging.   Lots of insults, people pulling over just because they want to beat the shit out of me (I still always carry a weapon), things thrown at me…….

In the last 2 days, just biking around town, I’ve had 3 separate people (2 male, 1 female or, for a different demographic, 2 white, 1 black) shout shit at me as I biked past them.  “Faggot” still seems to be a favorite among both sexes.  I like “miscarriage” as a reply. 

It all got me thinking about the 4th of July.  Is this behavior freedom?   Ignorance?  Mindless hostility towards anyone who seems to be different?  Am I supposed to feel kinship with these asswipes because we’re all American?  Fuck ‘em.  I hope they all die of cancer, slowly & painfully.  As a younger person, I’d always assumed that this kind of small-town inbred belligerence would stop as people got older.  Here I am at 48, being proven wrong on a weekly basis.

Trump didn’t invent this mindless, ignorant hatred and knee-jerk bullying, but it seems to be getting much more prevalent these past few months.

Why are Devo not running for president?

No comments: