Rigorous
Volume Five, Issue 2



Tezozomoc


The Paradox of Unity

“...remember when former US president Nixon went to China. The idea was that only a right-winger can do something like this. If a left-winger, or a Democratic president had done this, he would have been attacked as a traitor. The same paradox in France, you remember. Only De Gaulle was able to recognize an independent Algeria. A left-winger would have been considered a traitor.” --Slavoj Zizek

It was the morning of April 29th, 1992.
I had just settled into my 2nd cup of coffee.
I greeted all the physical therapists on the floor.
We had wired up our first treadmill patient
for the day.

My job was the collection of EMG
electromyography from leg muscles.

Collectively, measuring the
surface available insight
into nerve electrical behavior.

That resting potential of -70 mV
with balanced negative Na (neg) Ion,
and positive K (pos) Ion
[Na = Sodium Ion, K = Potassium Ion] .
When the stimulus is applied
the nerve cell opens up its sodium channels
floods with an increased density
in charge
creating a 3 mS impulse spike
peaking at +50 mV
and discharging this potential
via its Myelin sheath axon
activating the muscle fibers.
Several milliseconds later
the K+ Ion channel dilates
and brings the cell
back into its resting potential.

The clinical atmosphere
was broken
with the squawk of the
overhead lab speaker.

Security informed
that mass uprisings
had broken through out LA;
there were fires, gun fire, and violence.
We were all ordered to
go home and shelter.

The whole West Side of LA
poured into the transportation arteries
of the city.
We found ourselves in
a blood clotted city;
A cholesteric phased city.

It took me 7 hours
to drive 18 miles,
not including the anxiety
and panic of the situation.

Looking back I can say
that I experienced unity
with all those fleeing
the results of the Simi-Valley Jury
that acquitted the police
officers from any charges
from the beating of Rodney King;
a year before in March.

If you are struggling
with the reasoning
of the all majority white jury,
you are not alone.

If the interest of reason
is to suspend
the antitheses
of the differences.
Clearly, it failed
the Hegelian fission
of differences.

We see the first
paradoxical failure
of unity;
that reason
does not seek unity
at the expense of the
differences or distinctions.

While the Hegelian paradox
is tautological (meaning self referential).
We are asked to embrace reason
as conceived by reason,
as a process of thought
that includes the differences
determined by understanding.

It was clear that the jury
hadn’t read Hegel.
How could they unreason
Laurence Powell’s, in-car computer,
message, “Gorillas in the Mist”

Terry White, (King’s lawyer), sarcastically
questioned Powell about his
Gorillas in the Mist" message:

White: Now this call that involved these African Americans, was it in a jungle?
Powell: In a what?
White: A jungle?
Powell: No.
White: Was it at the zoo?
Powell: No.
White: Were there any gorillas around?
Powell: I didn't see any.
Later in the cross-examination,
Powell offered a "just-following-orders" defense.

After the Jan 6, 2020 incitement
to and insidious failed insurrection,
we see the tortious political programs
like “personal responsibility”
and their so called, “contract with American”
being thrown out the window
like deadbeat dads out the door.

They screamed, we seek unity,
which means,
“Do as we say, and if you don’t,
here are the violent followers
who will extract violence.
If they do show up it's your fault
for sowing division.”

This seems very tautological
a la Hegel’s unity and difference.
Using language against itself,
is meant to intimidate;
This is the logic of fascism.

There is no cooperating with mayhem,
no trying to get along,
no concessions,
no meeting you half-way.

No negotiating with rabid dogs.

We see the social political surface potentials
polarize when those channels
become highly differentiated;
highly polarized and exceeding
the potential threshold
causing social impulse responses.
only when you balance them
do we get a social resting potential.

I remember the old South Central
woman screaming, when she was being
interviewed about the uprisings,
“These people talk about unity!,
what they really be saying is, ‘you ain’t in it’.”

There is no uniting with fascists!




Double Mutant Jumping Jim Crow

“India’s health ministry said last week that a variant with two mutations — known as E484Q and L452R — was found in the country. The mutations are not new, but the variant in India carries both of them —something that has not been seen in other variants.”

Spoof:
“The mutations are not new but it could make them more contagious and better at evading the body politic. First, it's incredibly serious. Second, it is probably just the tip of the iceberg in what we should worry about in the U.S.”

“Come, listen all you gals and boys, Ise just from Tuckyhoe;
I'm goin' to sing a little song, My name's Jim Crow.”

We deserve
a prosperous,
democratic,
secure,
well governed,
nation,
Even If we stole it.

A competent state,
strong rule of law,
democratic accountability.
this would make me
“Weel about and turn about and do jis so,
Eb'ry time I weel about I jump Jim Crow.”

After 1812,
to differentiate ourselves
from British culture,
we had to steal,
“Jump Jim Crow”,
from Jim Cuff,
a physically disabled
enslaved African,
who lived in St. Louis, Cincinnati, or Pittsburgh.
We had to steal
the music of slaves
and African Americans
to create a national identity,
and don’t worry
we did it for Jazz in the 1930s,
we did it for blues in the 1960s,
we did it for hip hop in the 1990s,
with Robert Van Winkle,
a.k.a Vanilla Ice Baby.

Thomas Rice,
the minstrel of 1828,
performed all over
as “Daddy Pops Jim Crow”.
He tricked you!
Had you marching down,
had you marching
back and forth
between the feet
of a dead man
named Ulysses S. Grant
and another
dead man
named Robert E. Lee,
singing,
“Weel about and turn about and do jis so,
Eb'ry time I weel about I jump Jim Crow.”

Even with centuries old
Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871,
which makes it
a federal crime
to “conspire to prevent,
by force,
intimidation,
or threat”, to prevent someone from voting.

We learn the lessons of
the Republic of China,
which is strong,
well developed,
but weak in rule of law,
and no democracy.
Singapore has a rule of law,
but very limited democracy.
Russia has a rule of law,
a state good at suppressing dissidence,
but no good services,
and a weak rule of law.
A weak nation can’t
enforce its own laws,
while “....they make a chump
out of you.
they make a fool
out of you.
Make you think
you’re going somewhere
instead they got you singing…
“Weel about and turn about and do jis so,
Eb'ry time I weel about I jump Jim Crow.”

The inherent conservatism
tends to invest institutions
with emotional significance
once they are put in place.
Anyone who suggests
abolishing “white supremacy”
with something newer and
better, faces a huge uphill struggle.
As much as “white supremacy”,
is a lie, such as the November Slogan,
“Stop the Steal”
From this false ontology
Republican legislatures
introduced more
than 250 bills creating barriers to voting,
cutting early voting,
purging voter rolls,
limiting absentee options
and now, in Georgia,
outlawing poll bottle water.
This is mutation #1,
the virulent mutation
of "Stop The Steal"
to "Stop the Vote"
and want you to look away
and keep singing….
“Weel about and turn about and do jis so,
Eb'ry time I weel about I jump Jim Crow.”

The South finds itself
in the hands of government segregationists.
Racists, white supremacists,
who disguise themselves
as Dixiecrats and Republi-crows.

In the north
they don’t do it with Jim Crow,
but with the left and right winged
northern bird called gerrymandering.
Here, is where you
find mutation # 2,
While Malcom X asserted that
African American political primacy
was the bullet or the ballot, the Dixiecrats and Republi-crows
have mutated to "Stop the Ballot with the bullet".

I kneel to de buzzard, an, I bow to the crow;
An eb'ry time I weel about I jump jis so.



Tezozomoc: “I am a Los Angeles Chicano Poet and 2009 Oscar Nominated Activist and have been published by Floricanto Press, Gashes!: Poems and Pain from the halls of injustice, a collection of poetry. I have also been published in the following journals/anthologies: 2021 Boundless Anthology, Rigorous Journal, Red Earth Productions & Cultural Work, Underwood Press, Mom Egg Review, Love Letters to Gaia, An Anthology, Los Angeles Poets for Justice, I Can’t Breathe, A Social Justice Literary Magazine, The Oddball Magazine, Spitpoetzine, The Silver Stork, The 2018 Winter Issue of Come and Go Literary Is Finally Here (Come and Go Literary), The Blue Nib, The Coiled Serpent: Poets Arising from the Cultural Quakes and Shifts of Los Angeles (Northwestern University Press), Men’s Heartbreak Anthology (Karineh Mahdessian), CrazyQuilt, Rhino, Mind Matters Review, Left Curve, Next Phase, Minotaur Press, San Fernando Poetry Journal, Caffeine, Orchard, Poet's Sanctuary, Black Buzzard Press, Dance of the Iguana, The Americas Review, La Hoja, Louder Than Bombs, Orale!, Tight, (Untitled), and ChupaRosa Writer's '93. In the above magazines I had a total of 36 poems published. I am a Huffington Post blogger where I blog about activism and food issues. I have an academic chapter in Mexican-Origin Foods, Foodways, and Social Movements: A Decolonial Reader Edited by Devon G. Peña, Luz Calvo, Pancho McFarland, and Gabriel R. Valle, “Chapter 11 Fragmentary Food Flows: Autonomy in the “Un-signified” Food Deserts of the Real”. I have published essays in Urban Future Manifestos produced by the MAK Center. My work also includes academic essays on Nahuatl indigenous languages: see http://jan.ucc.nau.edu/~jar/TIL_7.html which was published as a chapter in Teaching Indigenous Languages, 1997. I am national and international regular guest speaker at conferences; Agrarian Trust (2016, Santa Fe), Green Festival, Braiding the Sacred, Seed and Food Sovereignty, and international gathering of Voices of Maiz (2016).”




Top of Page

Table of Contents






Visit our Facebook page          Visit us on Twitter


editors AT rigorous DASH mag DOT com
webmaster AT rigorous DASH mag DOT com