Anthology – Peoples’ Plan for Life, Now and Forever …
Friday, September 23, 2011. The way people think is reflected in their sources of identity with others. News of the Day: With cyberspace devices – satellite dishes and social media – an added factor has been introduced that makes it possible for terrified citizens in an isolated region under threat from local authority to find out what is going on outside their immediate area. At the same time, as in Mexico, citizens who try using it to counter the drug gangsters who use it, are tracked down through it, brutally beaten and killed, their bodies displayed in full view of the public. Perhaps, but not necessarily, people who act with such violence toward their fellow beings will be tracked via cyberspace through the trail they leave in finding those they intend to silence. It takes tremendous courage to pursue justice through the agonizingly long chain of opportunity used to dodge it.
In New York City right now, the Internal Affairs Division of the police has been revealed to have employees who immediately transmit information of impending raids to their fellow officers who are the subject of these raids. These are officers of the law, sworn to duty to the public. Some may have seen and applauded Serpico, a movie that successfully portrays the betrayal of an undercover officer in this same department in the 1970’s. An individual who conspires to deny life by violating the trust placed in her or him to protect life could easily become a decapitated corpse strung by the ankles from one of the many New York City Borough bridges at rush hour of a morning. If the Internal Affairs Division of the New York City Police Department continues to harbor criminals in its ranks, it will be only a matter of time. As is well known, those who betray their civic charge are inevitably swept away by those whom they enabled.
Wouldn’t you think all of this could be seen coming? Apparently not, unless space aliens are watching, taking notes and wishing to learn from it. Earthlings just don’t have the capacity to retain what is observable. And, as you can see from Anthology’s extracts, this never remains just a local problem. Washington Irving’s Tales of Sleepy Hollow observed humans’ nature long before discovery of the atom. In 1819, his schoolmaster, Ichabod Crane, along with The Headless Horseman, fired the imagination. Who would have foreseen imagined beings taking over all of human affairs? Back then it all was merely fanciful – entertaining. Sleepy Hollow’s subliminal kernel of truth made it even a little scary, but only a little. That was in 1819.
Returning to the present moment, one has to ask why I close instead of open Anthology with Primo Levi’s observation about the smallest form of life, carbon, the element on which all life depends by virtue of its mandate to combine or not to combine with others, yet is not recognized as such by most of us. If it were, we would be sufficiently informed as to how to retain and act upon the knowledge of this elemental truth [the last line of his autobiographical Periodic Table]. Were this understood, there’d be no reason for Anthology. If we knew enough to take Mr. Levi’s cue, we would not have to worry over conscience. We humans would have it, obviating the need to be on guard against its lack and all that flows from that simple observation. So this paragraph, regrettably, takes its place at the end of Anthology.