Monday, January 30, 2012

Gothic seizure of power: Republicans take Richmond, Virginia

The Washington Post, a war-loving daily just up the I-95 corridor from the seat of the Confederacy, has shed editorial light on one of the most certain catastrophes to have been predicted, of the Republican Party's recent seizure of the Virginia upper house, in the reign of a Falwellian mountebank in Mr Jefferson's Governor's Mansion. As night would follow darkest day in the Gothic horrors of Southern Republicanism, a Bill is pending in the Virginia Senate, right now, to intimidate adolescence under the foul, repugnant hypocrisy of controlling crime. The details are well enough laid out in the Post's cautiously superficial editorial, to chill anyone who toys with the illusion of humanity's protection by this Party. 

But the thrust of this legislation reaches further than to its exuberantly grisly ends, of destroying the young before they can even stand on their own. It is a phobic assault against human sexuality, an outrage of malignant sectarian molestation, hostile to every fundamental consideration of childhood development.

Minors in Virginia are already wards of a jurisdiction maintaining the scandalous cruelty of a permanent record of every supervisor's slightest whimsical distaste for their conduct, for so much as an instant. They grow up in the prohibitive shadow of unarticulated, unregulated blackmail, and can already no more risk the free expression of the antic, priceless glory of their personality, than they dare to hound themselves with cripplingly abusive control, for their entire life. The first observation against this proposed legislation, then, is that it is redundant. And the second is like unto it: it is onerously traumatising, simply to hover there in gross, invasive lust upon a child's likeliest dreams. But the greatest is that it lowers the burden of criminal proof below the common law's minimum standards of injury and of judgment, with canon law contempt for the presumption of innocence. It wishes criminality into existence, for the stark joy of punishment.

What Virginia parent could dare to allow his child to play with any other, whose parents he hadn't exhaustively interviewed on their phobias? It is the parent who will press complaints - whether possessed by the child or not - for whose personal chattel is the child, under Virginia law? If Bobby kisses Mary, Mrs Chastenpuss, how many lashes would you want? What educator could afford to accept the slightest tumescent disturbance in his literature class, for fear of being said to permit human development?

Often Love, the little boy, is pleased
to be the playmate of the beauteous girl
who is delightful to behold,
not the way the craven crowd portrays her.
And they fly together
above the mortal highway,
the first comforts of all knowing hearts.

Nor was heart ever wiser
than when struck with love ..

We already hear enough, from this Party, of the effrontery of the common law of tort, to regulate savage commerce too well. How little they care for regulating society by the conserving core of Anglo-American justice, they now make plain again, to seek to bind Vir-ginia to the stake of puritan hysteria. They are incurable: they invent a crime, to mask one in themselves. They compel rejection by a free people.

Giacomo Leopardi
Love and Death
  Canto xxvii
Jonathan Galassi
  Editor and Translator
Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2010©


  1. wow. just wow. when i hear of things like this, it makes me wonder if living in europe now is the best move for me, or if i should return to the usa and shake some sh*t up like i once used to do. my days as an employed youth advocate are behind me but maybe i see them coming up over the horizon once again.

  2. I think a contribution to the health of the United States is something to be refused from no one; but one can be anywhere, to advocate for youth. I greatly urge it, if you have a gift for it -- if you will excuse the effrontery. It's just that they deserve it.

  3. indeed they deserve it, and i still do it, albeit in a different capacity. that will always be the case. :) and there is nothing to excuse. ;) thanks for bringing these sorts of things to light. as always, it catalyzes thought.