Listen to our writers!
James Baldwin (1924 – 1987)
…Rereading Nobody Knows My Name
by James Baldwin
Colonialism and Cultural Change: Then, and now
More than fifty years ago, James Baldwin remarked that most people are able to delude themselves and get through their lives quite happily. There is a parallel now in the splendid illusions proposed by those who claim victory in drone wars of choice, the failed Iraq campaign and our most recent misadventures. As we spiral into sad decline: deaths,
destruction, deficits and dishonor… many of us find neither solace nor safe harbor in such delusions.
Today, in America, we are forced to examine who we are, where we are going, and what we may become. Fifty plus years ago Mr. Baldwin intoned that it was essential for Americans to free ourselves from the myths of America and try to find out what’s really happening.
After more than a half century of searching, perhaps in the nick of time, we may finally discover what must happen if we hope to survive. We feel powerless when leaders redefine torture to legitimize aggression, but if we intend to find truth, courage, and fidelity among these transgressions, we must take James Baldwin’s observations to heart.
He told us, “The intangible dreams of people can have a tangible effect on the world…. The challenge is in the moment, the time is always now.”
the rest the essay: http://www.ThePortlandAliance.org/JamesBaldwin
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