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  • I am stunned, numb, speechless, and disheartened. But, as always, I carry on. The world did not change this day. This day, a dream died in Dallas. Time to go back to South Carolina, where I belong on this day. Another day, another dream will dawn, and the earth will continue to revolve around the sun – but on this day, the sun is not welcome.

    Lights out tonight, trouble in the heartland
    Got a head-on collision smashin’ in my guts, man,
    I’m caught in a crossfire that I don’t understand
    But there’s one thing I know for sure
    I don’t give a damn for same old played-out scenes
    I don’t give a damn for just the in-between
    I want the heart, I want the soul, I want control right now

    Talk about a dream, you try to make it real
    You wake up in the night with a fear so real
    You spend your life waiting for a moment that just don’t come
    Well don’t waste your time waiting

    Badlands, you gotta live it everyday
    Let the broken hearts stand as the price you’ve gotta pay
    We’ll keep pushin’ ‘til it’s understood and these Badlands start treating us good.

    For the ones who had a notion, a notion deep inside
    That it ain’t no sin to be glad you’re alive
    I wanna find one face that ain’t lookin’ through me
    I wanna find one place, I wanna spit in the face of these

    (Badlands – Bruce Springsteen)

    Yes, the world was really about to change. We were there. I saw it. I could feel it. The new day was dawning. Peace was about to be declared upon the land.

    I’d worked my ass off for 10 months to get to this moment. I’d left my mother’s side, thanks to my loving wife, who understood how important this would be. She knew how I’d started out with barely the glimmer of a hope, just a thread, a remote inkling that maybe, just maybe, we could change this thing ‘round, that a difference could be made, a new world order forged.

    For the longest time, it was just me, and then this one guy on the other side of the table, who dared to share this vision. I convinced him that we could do this, together. I got him to believe it could really happen. Despite all of the bad blood, despite all of the betrayals, despite all of the broken promises. We could change the world. I believed it. I could feel it all shifting beneath my feet. The tremble became a groundswell, then a rumble, then a sea-change. We were there.

    And then, just like that, it was gone. A nuclear detonation. An explosion, followed by an implosion, followed by devestation, disbelief, and confusion.

    Meet the new boss….same as the old boss.

    At 11:35 a.m. Central Daylight Time, a cowardly lion strolled into a room, a room which he had been conspicuously absent from for two days, but from which he’d known what was proceeding. At any time during that time, he could have said, “Wait a minute. We need to rethink that item.” But, instead, he chose the theatrics of walking in, dropping a bomb instead of signing a document, then quickly left before the shrapnel from the explosion could hit him in the ass. Left us there to bear the brunt of the impact, to clean up the mess from bad faith dealing, left behind in his wake.

    I am appalled. I am ashamed. I am stunned beyond belief. I have nothing more to say.

    Climb a tower of freedom, paint your own deceiving sign
    It’s not my power to criticize or to ask you to be blind
    To your own pressing problem and the hate you must unwind.
    So ask of me no answer, there is none that I could give
    You wouldn’t find.
    I went your way ten years ago, and I’ve got nothing to say
    Nothing to say.
    (Nothing to Say – Jethro Tull, words by Ian Anderson)

    (Photo – the Book Depository from which gunshots were fired from the 6th floor window, ending the dream of Camelot 49 years ago).
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