When Robert Frost was presented with an alternative route, he took, “...the one less traveled.” Poor Yogi Berra, who said, “When you come to a fork in the road, take it,” suggested going around in circles, unable to make up one’s mind. The Pied Piper of Hamlin was very deliberate when he chose a path C that led the unsuspecting directly into the sea.

America and her followers were exhausted when they arrived at a crossroad. Their journey had been torturous from the beginning. When they first set out, they did choose a road that none before them ever had trod. It was a great risk, but their association with the greater congregation had become intolerable. The newly formed amalgamation of the Americana groups convened in order to agree upon and document the reasons for their violent separation and the guidelines by which they would conduct themselves as a new entity. Despite their stated intentions, the bad habits they had carried over could not be resolved merely because they willed it so through the flowery and deceptive texts of their documentations. Thus it was that America and her brood began their rocky road to potential ruin.

It was not long before conflict among the disparate groups began to affect the founding amalgamation. They were a very talented people. The original conflict of separation had drawn them together as a force of unity. However, as time passed, and a certain geographical segment of the groups began to discard the bad ways of the past, their opposite number not only continued the bad ways, but began to profit by them. Those rebellious ways were tolerated by the others until their pathways led to the acquisition of new territory. That stalemate brought about a holocaust that left the new amalgamation dangling by the thin thread of its documented ideas.

The defeated faction did not take kindly to its comeuppance. The bad ways, along with their associated profit, had been extirpated with surgical precision. The resulting wound was very painful. The healing has been slow and dolorous – and continues to affect the body politic to this day.

As the amalgamation grew, so did those who formerly had been crushed under the old bad ways. Contributing to the growth of the population are others who had been attracted the amalgamation by the tenets of its documentation, which intent now was reaching maturity. That old surgical wound still festered, however, and was further exacerbated by the new social and population realities.

Voilà, it is that America and her vastly altered constituency who arrive at this crossroad of a new millennium. In her mind, there must have been the remembrance of Yahweh commanding Moses not to allow the dust of his old desert trails to be carried over into the Land of Milk and Honey. There stood America, at first seemingly caught up in the Yogi dilemma. Then, along came a Pied Piper. Although his presence was dismaying, the seductive sound of his pipe seemed to lull many into the mistaken notion that there was salvation in taking his path back to a dishonorable, bad-water past. America, thought, now out of her doldrums, with her mind clear and with her vision firmly set upon the unexplored promises of the future, proudly proffered a salute to Robert Frost as she boldly gathered her throngs together and exulted: Over here, this way, this is the path we shall take – not the one that leads to the sea! This one, the one with promise of the future, untrodden and unsullied! This is a path for each and every one of us!

Americana is once more saved from its own destructive impulses.

PIED PIPER: Just hold on there, a minute, Miss America! That’s all nice and pretty and sentimental – but, it’s just a bunch of bullshit! David Duke: Run over there; grab her by the pussy and wrap her up in your sheet – then drag her ass back over here! Whether she likes it or not, this is the road we’re taking!


Curtis W. Long

Curtis W. Long

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