More Than A Season of Sorrow

by Phyllis Chesler

Rioter prepares to throw paint on an elderly woman in Portland 
Zane Sparling/Portland Tribune

For many months now, I was the one who counseled psychological fortitude, told others that we must embrace our isolation because it will keep us alive, and that we must be grateful for every day that we do not sicken and die. Easy for me to say: I was able to use the time to complete a book, Requiem for a Female Serial Killer (out in November) and to organize a major archive.

That’s done. Now what? At first, living lives of virtual reality was fun; now, it’s lost its novelty. So many dead, so many ill, so many harassed, robbed, shot, and killed in our cities and on our subways, terror about our employment, housing, even food—what to do with the children if there’s no school, whether to risk sending them to school at all—and then there are the drug-addicted and hallucinating homeless, doing their business in front of our homes, the seemingly intractable problem of how to vanquish a plague, while having to contend with non-political criminal gangs who shoot down children, attack senior citizens, young mothers, their own neighbors—and rob and shoot them too.

Anarchy has been unloosed. Funded and armed Antifa gangs menace civilians, the police, the government, topple statues, try to overturn history. A Civil War is fully underway. It is a class and race war between Marxists and Capitalists, between those who wish to “tear it all down” and those who wish to preserve what we’ve had, however imperfect it might have been.

How can we hold free, fair, and accurate elections? How can we afford not to do so? What will happen the day after the election results are counted? Blood in the streets, a glut of lawsuits in the courts? How will we ever right all wrongs in terms of class and race? And what ever happened to women’s rights?

Cry, the Beloved Country.