BEARING WITNESS

AvatarIn my college studies in Literature, one of my classes focused on the writers of resistance – those brave people who wrote about despots and crimes against humanity (think: The Holocaust as an example).  Despite danger to themselves these writers felt compelled to bear witness to the atrocities so that change might come about and so that history was recorded. 

We have a similar dynamic now as some of our writers focus on the Trump Presidency and I am impressed with their unswerving commitment.  I too have a feeling of alarm regarding the damage being done to this country by this Administration, but as a writer I struggle in knowing how to express my concern, how often, the words to use, the tenor.  There are other writers who show no such hesitation – like New York Times Op Ed writer Charles Blow.

He was interviewed on the Charlie Rose show a few weeks ago, and his words echoed much of what I read in other resistance literature. He even noted his responsibility to “bear witness.”

Certainly Charles Blow has gone after his subject full tilt.  In one column a few weeks back he wrote:

What befalls a country riven by a dynasty of deception and disrepute? What comes of a country being forced by its puerile “president” to retreat from its world leadership, set to a soundtrack of world mockery? What to make of an enterprise of corruption that Trump calls a family when they abandon any semblance of propriety and all things we once found appropriate? The America that I know and love is hanging by a thread, and Trump’s scandalous camarilla is playing with the shears.

In another column, he insisted:

Every now and then we are going to have to do this: Step back from the daily onslaughts of insanity emanating from Donald Trump’s parasitic presidency and remind ourselves of the obscenity of it all, registering its magnitude in its full, devastating truth. There is something insidious and corrosive about trying to evaluate the severity of every offense, trying to give each an individual grade on the scale of absurdity. Trump himself is the offense.

There are others like Blow who do not flinch, do not equivocate, who sound the alarm.  It will be interesting to see how history will treat these modern day writers of the resistance.

— Jonnie Martin

 

About jonnietootling

It seems forever that I have seen myself as a writer, enamored of life and great literature. I have been a journalist, a blogger, a published novelist; hold both a Bachelor's and Master's in literature and creative writing. Now in my 70's I am blogging here about existence, philosophy, art, literature, people of every stripe, finding our way through life, and growing old with panache.
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5 Responses to BEARING WITNESS

  1. Blow’s style is powerful, his words resonate. So much more of an impact than the screaming media of both left and right. I am grateful that there are those who continue to bear witness.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I enjoyed the Charles Blow interview on the Charlie Rose show. Blow speaks in such measured, thoughtful one and yet it is clear that there is a deep passion and sense of responsibility. I am always glad to find authors like him who talk about serious things with energy — but are not on rants.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sharon Cinkowski says:

    Well put. I agree with all the sentiments. I am just saddened by all of his supporters who continue to back him and cannot see the reality of him and his regime. Love you! Keep them coming Jonnie!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Me too Sharon. It is going to take years for us to repair all the damage done and continuing.

    Like

  5. Joella Ewing says:

    What amazes me is the number of Republican columnists who voice similar disgust and dismay at the words that come out of our president’s mouth and his actions. George Will, David Brooks, Jonah Goldberg, Charles Kruthhammer (never thought I’d ever agree with anything he’d ever say), Robert Samuelson, Dana Milbank. Michael Gerson, Kathleen Parker, Mathew Doud, Bill Christol all abhor what’s happening. But of course they are all part of the “fake” news.

    Joella

    Like

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