One-Man-One-Vote Rant by Thomas Martin Sobottke


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We started with
white
male
property
determining
electoral
viability
in a Republic
committed
to some approximation
of equality
birth free
and equal
dreams
deferred
because they were
never real
just out there
for show
you could not be
so naïve
as to think
you could vote
to have influence
over the hypocrisy rag
played non stop
to the inmates
of the asylum
that is America
with its puffed up chest
bragging of its
supposed democracy
yet holding people
as property
no better than a pig
or fencepost
demarcating the theoretical
superiority
of whiteness
maleness
native born
over the foreigner
snuck in
during the night
when bigots
weren’t looking
for there were some
who could not
countenance
the status quo ante
of such a contradiction
between
how we lived
with
how we said we lived
thought we lived
wished we lived
as women discovered
they were no better
than the slave
except for their
skin pigmentation DNA
linking them to
the oppressing group
it made them so sick and ashamed
they rebelled in one long Ovarian war whoop
with their consciences
hanging out
there for all to see
and the nation
went out and killed
three quarters of a million souls
just like you and me
to decide to do
what they said they would
when the experiment
was begun in that civic petri dish
of freedom
liberty
equality
acceptance
compassion
in brotherhood and sisterhood
nonetheless the damaged ones
that oppressed
did wrong
said
not yet for the women
who started it all
they became such pests
the men finally granted them
the vote
so they could think themselves equal
to the dead white guys
who started the whole mess
don’t you see
that glorious flag
waving over me
so that I might feel it too
only to find the detour
we got to go through
that trick and deception
they call Jim Crow
we didn’t get the right reception
yet we fought
to have the very human rights
enshrined
in the founding document
applied to those
the Creator said
had them all the time
yet there remain those
bent on exclusion
even now
after all
this fuss and contradiction
and all the obfuscation
to hide from the people
the principle
that made the Revolution
so the evolution
of the Constitution
wouldn’t be for nothing
to all these folks
here with us now
standing in one unending line
wiping their collective brow
wondering if they will get that thing
promised to them now
finally
not pulled away
at the last second
by souls damaged fatally
without the vision to see
what they do to you and me
so now we struggle on
to make these
truths
self-evident
to end on a note
benevolent and sublime
but ready for the ultimate freedom struggle
if there be the need for one for all time.

-October 2013

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