AMERICA- embracing tyranny since 1492
For the past two months I've been lost in the 18th and 17th centuries, investigating the political time period of my ancestors, Richard jennings and Gysbert Oosterhoudt. Uncle Dick was murdered by his nephew and Gysbert was murdered by a friend. Those two historical facts sent me on the chase through ancestry.com and wikipedia hell. I went at it seven days a week, 8 hours or more per day, researching, writing and trying to connect the dots. Deer season was upon us and I'd barely gotten up in a tree. I hadn't seen any friends, or as you know, written a single blog in weeks. I had no more words after all the hanging, scalping and torture.
Two hundred pages later and I feel it is all complete crap. I wish I could give you better news. We all could use a little cheering up, but I'm sorry to say, writing a family history isn't as easy as I thought it would be. I wasn't lacking in characters or events, but what sounds so interesting in, a half paragraph outline of murder, hangings and Indian killing, slips through fingers like slimy fish, as one tries to capture it on the page. I feel like one of those Sunday plein air painters, trying to capture the stormy weather, and birds on the wing.
Add to this the election of Donald Trump, all my despicable relatives' exploits and I'm more than ready to shut the lap top and hit the woods. The one thing it has afforded me is a crash internet course in American history from 1733 to 1846. Both sides of the family were here way before that, but that's my window. The exploitation, demonization and virtual extermination of the first Inhabitants of this country, along with the enslavement, torture, denigration and imprisonment of African American society was formed and perpetuated by the Jennings and the Osterhouts. I learned of my kin owning slaves and most likely scalping Indians, being captured, escaping, fighting, killing, and spreading the empire, like good Americans. Sounds intriguing, right? Well it really isn't. It's pretty fucking disgusting.
Today we have a president whose most infamous tag line is "Grab 'em by the pussy." He doesn't believe in climate change, spouts devisive, white supremacist language, while plating everything in sight with gold. His base, according to the clueless media, is "rural white", the lost tribe, recently discovered in Kentucky by the BBC. These voters haven't been seen since the spinning jenny took their jobs in 1764. It would be laughable if it wasn't so deadly serious. The people who elected Trump aren't some toothless, mouth breathers in pajama bottoms. They are your family, my family. And this is what's so disheartening about history. Goddamnmit if the Osterhouts and the Jennings don't need to shoulder a helluva lot of the blame. I'm crushed. I'm going in the woods.