Patriotic Hackers
January 02, 2003
John Perry Barlow: Pretending To Be Asleep

Here's another excerpt from the letter I just quoted from John Perry Barlow.

This really hit home, because I feel like I'm one of those people who got woken up last year.

I think more people are waking up every day.

Maybe we can even wake up some of the possums.

Actually, I have finally figured out what's going on with a great many of us. Shocked into a kind of political catatonia by the multitudinous Uh-Oh's of the Uh-Oh's, we are pretending to be asleep. This is the only explanation I can think of for our political passivity.

If we were actually asleep, we would have been shocked into alertness by the wanton ruin of our economy in only two years, the overnight establishment of an oligarchy that makes Mexico's look enlightened, the detailed repudiation of the Constitution enacted by the USA PATRIOT Act, and the breezy willingness of our government to commit us to simultaneous wars in separate hemispheres.

If we had really been sleeping, these and many other shocks to the conscience would have us bolt upright by now. The real patriots would be well out of bed, rushing to defend America against the Junta, rather than ratifying it with their absence from the polls.

But there is an old Navajo proverb you've heard me quote before: "It's impossible to awaken someone who is pretending to be asleep." Never has that phrase seemed more bitterly and poignantly true than now. It is also impossible to teach someone who's pretending to be asleep. And, finally it is impossible to administer a pop quiz to possum players.

Posted by Lisa at January 02, 2003 10:06 AM | TrackBack
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