Corners do many things.
And we assign the concept of corners great powers. We turn corners, get backed into them – they can make a structure strong or weak, a path easy to negotiate or the most dangerous thing to travel.
It all depends on the effort one puts into designing the corner.
And that is something that is often forgotten, a corner only exists when two things are put together so they may change direction.
We build our corners in advance. But sometimes we forget that and are surprised by them.
I was online doing some hefty researching and preparing to shoot the Executioner. If you saw the first run of tweets you probably noticed that I choose two videos from each side of the coin – one for and one against the Death Penalty. It is a complicated issue.
Then I turned a corner about something I have been watching for days, the whole issue about that serial killer. Sometimes I comment on things and sometimes I don’t in the news but this one had a certain amount of urgency and importance to it because it effects a portion of our population that we don’t much pay attention too. And that is the safety and status of the Black man. That is who this serial killer is targeting. We would all get behind it and be tossing FB notes back and forth if it was a child or a woman of most any other race (although it should be noted that if the SK were pursuing black women it would take quite a bit longer for the news to surface much less the investigation to roll). What makes this all so unusual, besides this direct confrontation to our institutionalized racism, is that the killer is white. In the dark land of serial killer info, that is rare. Rarer still is a killer who is motivated by race etc.
But how we handle our information can be.
What was interesting to me, in trying to find videos to present both sides of the coin, was how easy it would have been to select ones that would have professed to support one view – but through their production et al, supported the other. Even in trying to word the tweets I caught myself subtly and inadvertently putting my opinion into the announcement and I had to write it over and over.
The fact that the best videos, the most balanced presentations of the whole (and there are quite a few but long) were made by other countries yet about the US. Al Jazeera’s show, Witness, had perhaps the best examination of our prison system, justice and application of the death penalty.
Is saddening. The state of everything in this country as far as our education, knowledge of our own system and society, and involvement in examination of ourselves is just…at a point that it is disheartening and overwhelming.
They say, or Nietzche said originally, “when you look into the abyss, the abyss looks into you.”
Tolstoi, to paraphrase one of his quotes, said “Nietzche is an ass.”
When you choose to look into the abyss, to peer into the darkness – the abyss does not look into you. In a sense, and I am going to use this term even though many may have a problem with it because metaphorically it is the easiest way to put it – when you look into the abyss, God looks into you and asks. “Where have you been?”
I think, that is the corner that I have both turned and backed into at the same time, I am facing the question “Where have I been?”
A part of me wants to beg forgiveness for allowing myself to become distracted and to believe my own distraction.
A part of me wants to run from the corner out into the open room where I can be less aware of what forms the “walls of my cell” (to borrow a phrase from OneSapien).
And yet, in that corner of the cell, the corner also becomes the bend in the path, with the road running out from the corner, only you cannot see where it goes or how hard or easy the going will be.
That is the thing that I am learning about corners. They have a dual nature. I know and was the one who constructed them, to form cells or paths, but I am also the one who can change the nature of the structure they are in.
The easiest way, after all, to tear open a box, is to start at the corner.
c.2010 Cassandra Tribe. All Rights Reserved.