hate

All posts tagged hate

Condem(nation)

Published April 12, 2016 by April Fox

Take a look at your hair,

your skin

the color of your eyes

the space between your teeth

and your words, the cadence

with which they erupt

from your imperfect mouth, the syntax

tripping, flowing, smooth like

broken glass

Take a look at the things

that keep you up at night, the

sites you visit

in the bathroom

home alone, but with the door locked

anyway

the nightmares you’re afraid to tell

the hands you wish would reach for yours

across the universe of shame

the vacant way you stare and raise your hands

in praise

Take a look at your twisted limbs, your fractured smile, your thickened middle

evidence

of greed and gluttony

Take a look at the god you cry to

when your self becomes too much,

staring down the barrel

one finger on the trigger

the other in the air

Take a look at the wreckage

that your life has left behind, at the emptiness around you

at the vacuum that you are

shrunken, flaccid, impotent and weak

Take a look and see

how beautifully easy

it would be

to become the

hated thing. 

That Was a Long Time Ago

Published April 6, 2016 by April Fox

We were all

disembodied

captured behind glass

eyes, red-rimmed and leaking

fluids

in our creased, cupped palms

sliding through our fingers

to the floor

where they bathed

in retribution.

We were all

glass-eyed, blinded, captured

by our wrists, bound

with the long and strangling

cords

of their self-loathing, we were

hunched over ovens, burning flesh

off our cheeks, exposing bone

the skull determined

to protect

what wasn’t there, we were

flowers

in cheap vases, we were

torn and stitched together

and together

and together until the fibers

meshed and the threads

locked tight together and the glass

behind us, now

reflected fire

and exploded.

Pillbug

Published September 11, 2015 by April Fox

I don’t care what you think of me,” he shouts
into his megaphone,
short fat body like a pillbug all rolled up and just as smart
words like stagnant water, they have
no substance
no ability to hurt
or to wash anything away

I don’t care what you think of me,” he shouts
garbled speech slowed down at the ends, sharpened by hate
but still
as dull as his head,
I don’t care what you think

but tell me

What do you think?”

And his insides must be slick as mud, rotten fruit and
the smell of regret, knowing
he was never anything
and in his head, the wires cross
short out the reality
the future like a blacklight
showing all the shit he’s done
showing all he stands to lose.

I don’t care what you think of me,” he shouts
sour tongue begs for a reaction, throwing epithets and hope
like a monkey throwing shit

I don’t care what you think of me-

I don’t.

Untitled, September 4 2015

Published September 4, 2015 by April Fox

This has been a trying week, with a lot of scary things happening close to home and around the world. I’ve been simultaneously trying to wrap my head around it all and to pretend that I don’t see the ugliness, and I keep coming back to this one thing that I simply cannot understand. With all the things that you can teach a child:

To paint a picture
To hula hoop
To identify birds by their songs
To play an instrument
To speak another language
To write in cursive
To grow tomatoes
To tie their shoes
To write their name
To play hopscotch
-or Go Fish
-or Parcheesi
-or Mario Kart
To bake a cake
To care for a pet
To wash their hands
To dance
To tell a joke
To practice gratitude
To love

Why would anyone want to teach them how to hate?

little ones

On Religion, Love and Government

Published May 14, 2012 by April Fox

To love is not a privilege or even a right, but an inherent trait, like the ability to breathe.

If you believe that god breathed his breath into your existence, then you must also believe that he loved your love into existence. To try to deny anyone the ability to love, freely and openly and in the same manner that all other adult humans are able to love, is to attempt to deny them the right to breathe; in effect, you are assuming the role of the god you claim loves all, sees all, created all-but created this love by mistake.

Do you equate your government with your god? Why then did you visit the courthouse for your marriage license and the church for the ceremony celebrating your commitment? If they are one and the same, why do you require the services of both a magistrate and a minister?

I’m aware that our government spends far more on death and violence than on food, education and healthcare. Our government rests on a foundation of greed and narcissism, power and control. None of those things have anything to do with love. On the edge of sleep, I promise the man beside me that this is forever, and he promises the same to me. There is no need to ask a corrupt government permission to make these promises. If there is a god and he sees everything, he hears our words, sees the love he created, and approves-even without the sanction of the secular government. Would your god deny a man and a woman the ability to love and to be loved by the children they’re raising, because we don’t believe in war and greed, and don’t want to associate our love with those malignant traits?

Does your god truly want people to die alone because they were unable to buy the right to partnership? Does your god truly want to watch families collapse under the weight of your prejudice? Does your god truly, in some inexplicable act of cruelty, want to hurt some of those that he created in his image, as you say, simply because they love?

I will not call the morality of the government with which you equate your god into question here-clearly there is none to consider. My question here is one I’ve asked before: how does your faith allow you to not only judge others and attempt to deny them love, but to use the government to perpetuate that prejudice? Where in your bible is the issue of state government addressed? Where in your bible does it clearly define the terms of a legal marriage license? Where in your bible does it mention your god keeping watch over the courthouse doors to see who leaves with the appropriate secular document granting permission to share the love that he created?

Where in your bible does it say that you have the right to judge anyone at all?

Amendment One

Published May 9, 2012 by April Fox

i feel as if
amendment one
is being read by the light of a bulb
shining through the skins
of my family, friends-
my children.

how can you cry your careful,
scripted tears over the loss of a life
not yet started
and tell the child before you
that his life means less than yours?

pro-life, and yet you spit
your prejudice and bile into the faces of your neighbors
fight to take away
their right to life

how easy is it for you to waste your righteous hours
combing through the verses in your book
tossing bits and pieces into piles by the side
over here are things that we’ll ignore
over here is where we make the condemnation pile

you gossip in the grocery aisles
while you shop for pork and tampons
maybe lobster for the anniversary of when you stopped
fucking behind the back
of the god that you adore

dip your razor in the baptismal pool
round the edges of your beard
shave your scalp clean
watch your faith fall to the floor

wine-drunk in the mornings
cannibalizing christ and if his body was inside you
you would see where you are wrong.

slave-owner, whore
if i were bible-bound like you
i could whip you while you cleaned my floors
then sell you for your meat
so your body could be violated
like your conscience must have been.

Why I Voted Against Amendment One

Published May 8, 2012 by April Fox

This is what my life looks like:

I am an adult heterosexual female. I live with an adult heterosexual male. We have expressed, both verbally and through the way we live, our commitment to each other. We each wear a ring that symbolizes that commitment. We share responsibilities: grocery shopping, bills, housework-though I will say that the housework sharing could use a little work. When I go off to my other job, the man that I live with cares for my children. He cooks dinner, makes sure medicine is dispensed on time, tends to cuts and scrapes and hurt feelings, gets them to necessary appointments. When the boys had a friend over and were immersed in a video game, he noticed that my daughter seemed to be feeling lonely, so he sat and kept her company while she watched her silly tween-girl Disney programs-not exactly prime viewing for a Star Trek-obsessed musician, but he made sure she had someone to hang out with. He’s never been an athlete, but when my son wanted to go to the baseball field and practice today, they went together, biking there and then stopping for ice cream on the way back. On my first day at a new job recently, he surprised me at work with the kids, and they took me out to lunch.

We watch movies with the kids, go to the park and the playground, take our little dog hiking, have cookouts and birthday parties and family meetings about chores. My children are lucky: they have a mother who loves them, a father who loves them, AND significant adults in their parents’ respective lives who love them.

A marriage license in our county costs $60. That’s not a lot of money for some people, but for us it’s a week’s worth of gas-a month and a half of dance lessons for baby girl-a rare meal out for all of us-new shoes for the boys… it’s not money that we have to spare. We choose to spend that money on things that we need, rather than a piece of paper that says we’re married. I’m opposed to legal marriage for reasons other than the cost: the fact that my gay friends are denied that right makes me reluctant to take advantage of it, and our government is so corrupt in so many other ways, I have no desire whatsoever to seek their approval of my relationship.

If passed, Amendment One would make it impossible for my children to get health insurance under my partner’s plan, if he got a job that offered it. That would mean they’d either have to stay on the state plan, costing taxpayers money, or they’d go uncovered. If something happened to him and he was in the hospital with visitation restricted to family only, the children he cares for and loves like his own wouldn’t be able to visit. If I became incapacitated and a decision had to be made about ending my life or keeping me alive via machine, that burden would be placed on my older two children, who are barely adults. I can’t imagine having to make that decision for my mother now, much less at age 18 or 20. The person to whom I am closest, who knows me better than anyone else, would have no legal right to ensure that my wishes were followed-he wouldn’t even be allowed in to say goodbye, under Amendment One. Those rights would only be offered to people who are legally married, and to the children of those unions.

Let’s look at some hypothetical situations: A woman is married to an abusive man who cheats on her and leaves her for another woman, but will not sign divorce papers. Some time later, the woman is in a healthy relationship with a man who treats her well. The woman is in an accident and is hospitalized in critical condition-only family are allowed to visit. Supporters of Amendment One believe it’s okay that the woman’s estranged and abusive husband could visit her-but the man who cares for her could not.

A child is raised from infancy by a man who acts as his father, in every way. The child calls the man “Dad” and has no contact with his biological father. Supporters of Amendment One don’t believe that that child has a right to say goodbye to the only father he’s ever known on his hospital deathbed.

A woman becomes terminally ill. Supporters of Amendment One believe that her parents, who cursed at her and threw her out of their home when she revealed that the name of the person she loved was Ann, not Adam, should be allowed to visit her and make end-of-life decisions, but Ann, with whom she has lived and been in love for 15 years, should not.

Supporters of Amendment One believe that children are only entitled to healthcare if their parents are legally married.

Supporters of Amendment One believe that a $60 piece of paper means more than the way a couple cares for each other.

Supporters of Amendment One believe that my friends, a gay couple who have been together for 13 years, don’t deserve the right to marry-but that the heterosexual barhop and the abusive crackhead with whom she hooked up and drunkenly agreed to marry two days ago, after he beat her and threatened to kill her dog, do.

Supporters of Amendment One believe that their religious beliefs trump the civil rights of anyone who doesn’t believe as they do, and that the lives of those who are different not in thought or in action but by virtue of an inherent trait that they cannot control are worth less than their own.

Supporters of Amendment One remind me a whole lot of a puny little asshole named Adolf, and that is why I voted against it, and will continue to fight similar legislation until we defeat this bigotry, ignorance and hate.

 

The New Christianity: Bigotry, Hate and Oppression, All in One Convenient Package

Published February 22, 2012 by April Fox

It’s no secret that I’m not a big fan of religion, and have issues with fundamental Christianity in particular. Now before you close your browser and bathe yourself in holy water to cleanse your spirit of the evil I’ve already infused in you via my previous posts, hear me out.

Let’s get this out of the way right up front: I’m not anti-Christian. In order to be anti-Christian, I’d have to be biased against an entire group of people based on one common factor. Since I’m not an asshole, I don’t tend to judge individuals that way. I’m simply anti-anything that encourages people to hate each other based on who they love or what they look like or what god they choose to believe in. I get why my general anti-religion stance comes off as anti-Christianity; I live in an area where Christianity is the most popular religion, and much of the idiocy I encounter is perpetuated by Christians. Trust me, if you’re being a dick based on your Jewish or Muslim or atheist beliefs, I’ll call you on that too.

Religion doesn’t have anything directly to do with god, or gods, or the lack thereof. Religion is about a group of people linked by their shared belief in their interpretation of their version of god, and the official documents and decrees that have to do with that interpretation of god. Religion is about following a set of man-made rules ostensibly set forth by whichever interpretation of god that particular man happened to believe in.

Religion, to put it simply, is just a political movement with the word “god” in it.

I’ve been accused of brainwashing my children by not forcing them to go to church and indoctrinating them with beliefs they’re too young to understand. I’m “brainwashing” them by sharing my own views with them-even though if those were Christian views, I’d just be “doing the right thing, raising them up in the way of the Lord!”-and discussing other beliefs with them, so that they can see what makes sense to them and make their own choices. The horror, people. The fucking horror! Before you know it, they’ll be choosing their own socks and asking for sugar cookies when I set out chocolate chip. And from there, good lord, it’s chaos. Anarchy! The whole world will go to, well, hell, I guess-if we start brainwashing our kids into thinking for themselves.

Go tell a fundamentalist Christian that she’s brainwashing her kids by not telling them that atheism is a valid and logical perspective. Go ahead, I dare you.

I do believe in certain aspects of certain religions. The “judge not” and “love thy neighbor” parts of Christianity are awesome, although those bits of wisdom seem to have been forgotten by many professed Christians. The Baha’i faith teaches that everyone is one and should explore their own beliefs. I love that. Meditation, self-reflection, loving nature: all are things drawn from and fundamental to certain religions, and they’re all good things. I take issue with the arbitrary rules and the notion that everyone should believe and act the exact same way. And I have a HUGE problem with any group, organization or individual who uses fear and threats to make its members follow its rules-especially when that kind of mental cruelty extends to children. I try to teach my kids appropriate behavior based on kindness, compassion and consideration. Don’t sing at the top of your lungs while your brother’s trying to do math, because it makes it hard for him to focus. Don’t hit, because it hurts. Don’t steal, because it’s not nice to take things that aren’t yours. Some branches of Christianity teach kids from a very young age that they were bad from the time they were born, and if they don’t follow the rules ostensibly made by some invisible man in the sky, they’re going to burn in hell.

Put on your censor glasses, folks, it’s about to get ugly.

What the flaming fuck on a pulpit is THAT? You don’t threaten kids into submission, and you damn sure don’t punish them for something that’s beyond their control. I don’t care if it’s wetting the bed or some mythical chick biting an apple, that is NOT OKAY. And then, THEN you teach them that how they behave isn’t really important because they’ll never be good enough anyway; all they have to do in order to go to the Magic Happy Place in the Sky after they die is say they believe in something?  I’ve actually heard people say “Being a good person isn’t enough.” Sorry, but being a good person is pretty much the ONLY thing that’s enough. If a parent holds his child to impossibly high standards, so high that they can’t possibly be met, and then punishes him when he fails, that’s considered abusive behavior. Tell the kids there’s no way they can live up to the standards of some false entity, and he better say he believes in this thing that he can’t even comprehend so he doesn’t end up burning up for eternity, and that’s just fine Christian parenting.

Doing what’s right based entirely on the potential consequences isn’t called being a Good Christian, it’s called being a sociopath.

I don’t have a problem with parents taking their kids to church, if that’s part of their family culture. Some folks do yoga together, some veg out in front of the TV, some go to church. No biggie. My son goes to a church group because his friends go. My daughter has gone a few times because she wanted to spend some time with her father’s girlfriend. It’s not the end of the world. And I get why church is a popular activity. People like to hang out with like-minded peers. We’re a socially needy species, generally, and while I’m far less inclined toward social interaction than most people, when I do want to be around people, I go where I know I can find others like me and who will be accepting of me. Besides the social aspect, church can fill other beneficial roles. My daughter attended a church, briefly, that focused a lot of attention on community service. That was fantastic. I can see how it could help people who are feeling lost and alone, too. But when the core beliefs of that church are rooted in hate and bigotry, I have a problem with your religion. When you’re talking about people of other faiths believing in the “wrong god,” I have a problem with your religion. When you’re teaching from a text and ignoring the parts that don’t support your hate and bigotry, I have a problem with your religion. When you’re teaching kids not to think and not to question but to blindly claim faith in something they’re too young to understand, I have a problem with your religion.

Not all denominations are like this. I’m not naming any particular ones, because I love people that belong to those sects and don’t want anyone to feel like this is a personal attack. It’s not. It’s an attempt to get people to think. It’s an attempt to make people see exactly WHY I have a problem with certain aspects of certain religions.

Bottom line: if I’m “anti-Christianity” for disliking the fact that people perpetuate fear, hatred, bigotry and oppression under the guise of being “Christian,” I’ll wear the title proudly.

And to all of my friends and family of every faith who have proven to me that the extreme examples I cited above are in no way indicative of every member of any religion, thank you for being who you are. I love you. Faith is not the problem. Aligning yourself with ugly beliefs and practices in the name of that faith is.

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