Being Considered Expendable is No Fun

But the tendency of the nation to put millions in that position is yet to be repudiated

Being Considered Expendable is No Fun
Photo by lucas clarysse on Unsplash

So, the lieutenant governor of Texas has come out and said that the grandparents of Texas are willing to die to save the economy for their grandchildren.

Really, sir?

I expect that in a few days, there will be a ton of grandparents pushing back on this, and I certainly have taken enough calls from senior citizens who don't have so low a view of the value of their own live and the value of their lives to their grandchildren. I don't think the average grandparents in Texas are this dumb either – I hope not!

But see, the lieutenant governor of Texas has shown up the persistent flaw in the leadership of America since the Founding. Since the Founders were men who did not give a second thought to considering millions upon millions of people expendable – their slaves – this should be no surprise.

Yet the lieutenant governor of Texas just slipped up and let it be known that there are White senior citizens in power who think other White senior citizens who are poorer and less powerful can be the new millions to be counted as expendable for profit – to be a chattel, given over to death for the profit of the nation.

That is essentially the Civil War written in geriatric terms, but still, the same terms.

For, see, for 401 years, Africans enslaved in America and their descendants have been saying that human life is not just to be reduced to how much profit can be made by the Founder-class of people.

No one in power listened at all for 246 years -- until the Civil War was the cost -- and barely listened for another century after that. Not enough people are listening to those foundational builders of America and their descendants on this subject even today. Too many people are invested in private prisons to want that message heard.

No one listened at all to Native Americans who were dispossessed of about 99 percent and their population in order that their land be made a chattel – no one listens to the surviving Native American who values life over profit, and tries his or her best to protect land and people from further degradation.

No one listened to the Latino inhabitants of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, and California who were there before the United States took over, and no one listens to the Latinos that are still in cages at the border, or still upholding many of our industries every day in spite of the Covid-19 threat.

No one in power is listening to the multiple generations of loyal Asian American citizens, some of whose Chinese ancestors provided the labor to complete the railroad system that paved the way for the modern and mighty United States of the 20th century.

No one listened to loyal Japanese Americans, some of whom fought for the country in World War II while their families were confined in internment camps at home. No one is listening while Asian Americans from all backgrounds are being racially attacked because of the excuse of this virus.

But here's the thing about this virus. Covid-19 only cares about your race: human. To Covid-19, we are all expendable in its mindless drive to spread and survive.

If you're old, you're more more vulnerable. Nobody has the complexion for the protection.

Of course, though, if you know your American history, you know the country would not be shut down for the elders of the African American, Latino, Native, or Asian communities if only they were susceptible. They would be allowed to die for the good of the country. 400 years and counting of that anyway.

But see, the lieutenant governor of Texas let the cat out of the bag about people just like him.

No one is safe alive in America if their death is more profitable. No one.

Again: nobody has the complexion for the protection, this time around.

Maybe Covid-19 will get the fever high enough in this nation so it is willing to accept the humanity of all people, and be healed.

If not, then expect to see millions of bodies, and not hidden away from view this time like in less media-heavy periods of history. The nation's folly of making chattel of its own people will be exposed to the whole world. We will then have to come to terms – too late – with what has been true from the beginning: we will either do what is necessary to protect all of us, or none will be protected.

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Deeann Mathews
Deeann Mathews
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Deeann Mathews

Deeann D. Mathews is is a former professional journalist with the Bay Area News Group, and is a writer, composer, and community servant living and working in San Francisco, CA. She is an early adopter on Vocal and the new Hive Blockchain.

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